Posted in Nanotechnology

(Nano)Golden Fleece

Who knew that nanotechnology would become trendy in the fashion industry? Discovery News published an article recently about how clothing designers have begun adding gold and silver nanoparticles to Merino wool to create new colors. The size of the nanoparticle determines the color of the fabric.

Not to be a wet blanket, but considering the hype in recent years that people have made about potential dangers of nanoparticles, I’m surprised people aren’t more worried about putting nanoparticles in fabric. But who am I to argue with fashion? I can’t even stand to wear uncomfortable shoes.



Beth Kelley is an applied & digital anthropologist with an overall interest in how people engage with and are impacted by their environments and vice versa. This has manifested itself in many ways, by looking at creativity, playful spaces, built environments, and environmental enrichment, sustainability, design research, and integrative and collaborative models of learning such as through play and hands-on learning.

One thought on “(Nano)Golden Fleece

  1. Is this really an appropriate use of taxpayer money? Is this really an appropriate avenue down which nanotechnology and nanoscience should be traveling?

    Well, from the capitalistic perspective, this should be expected and not reviled. If this technology exists and consumers are situated such that they demand and can afford such luxuries, then perhaps there is no reason to object to such applications of nanotechnology.

    There is, however, a disturbing alliance between the government and the clothing designers who are likely to profit from these developments, which, clearly, are a product of public investment.

    Furthermore, there is the more broad concern that while our civilization is teetering on the brink of the catastrophe of not being able to supply enough energy to prevent collapse – once peak oil hits – that publicly-funded research is going into the production of luxuries rather than technological solutions to the crisis.

    Full discussion:

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