Nanoparticles have been incorporated in hundreds of different types of products, and the novel properties of nanomaterials offer great promise to provide new technological breakthroughs. However, nanotechnology is an emerging technology which has potential health and safety risks throughout its product life cycle. The health risk of a nanoparticle is a function of both its hazard to human health and its exposure potential. It is prudent for companies to try to mitigate the potential risks of nanoparticles during the design stage rather than downstream during manufacturing or customer use. The intent of his paper is to propose ﬁve design principles for product designers to use during the design stage for products that contain nanoparticles. By using these design principles, the health risk of the nanoparticle may be mitigated by potentially lowering the hazard and/or the exposure potential of the nanoparticle. These proposed design principles are largely untested and are offered as an initial framework that will require more testing, validation, and reﬁnement.
Journal of Cleaner Production, October 2009