Nanotubes and nanowires

Nanotubes and nanowires

C N R Rao and A Govindaraj  

Cambridge, UK: Royal Society of Chemistry  | 2005 | 272 pp | ?89.95 | ISBN 0854048324   

Reviewed by Karl Coleman 

Nanoscience is a rapidly developing field which promises much in chemistry, physics and medicine. The imagination of scientists in this field continues to amaze with ideas ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous.  

Nanotubes and nanowires are a fundamental part of nanomaterials and thus worthy subjects of a book in the RSC Nanoscience and nanotechnology series. Even with the unimaginative title those with an interest in material sciences will find themselves drawn to the book. Unfortunately, on balance the book fails to deliver. With such interesting subject matter the reader should be stimulated and left wanting to know more but you can’t help but be put off by the uneasy style and poor reproduction of figures.  

The book is aimed at both graduates and professionals and is divided into three standalone chapters: carbon nanotubes, inorganic nanotubes, and inorganic nanowires.  

Each chapter has a brief introduction to the field before tackling in turn the synthesis, characterisation, properties and applications of each material. The authors have chosen to focus predominantly on the synthesis of the materials, with very little space given to the properties and applications. I can’t help but feel that the authors have missed a trick here as it is the latter two that provoke the most interest and thought in the nanoscience arena. 

The saving grace of this book is that each chapter is extensively referenced and as such it could be useful for the more specialist reader. In this respect you could argue that the book has reached what it set out to achieve, to ’provide a comprehensive source of information on research associated with nanostructured materials.’.