The Casimir effect could also play a role in accurate force measurements between the nanometre and micrometre scales.
Nanotechnology is used to study the fabrication and manipulation of structures that range in size from one hundred nanometres to a single nanometre (or a billionth of a metre).
As we approach dimensions of one billionth of a metre the nanometre scale it is now appropriate to talk about nanoelectronics rather than microelectronics.
These things are measured in nanometres, with a nanometre being a millionth of a millimetre, or about as far as a fingernail grows in a second.
The grids comprise carbon nanotubes - long, hollow cylinders of pure carbon a few millionths of a millimetre across and several thousand nanometres long.
In addition, he says, the new hydrogels have well-ordered networks of pores on both the nanometer and micrometer scales.
Colloidal dispersions have particle sizes in the 1.0 nanometer to 0.50 micrometer range.
Transistors, which next year will contain features measuring 45 nanometres , or billionths of a metre, have become so small that they leak substantial amounts of electricity.
The data are stored in tiny sheets of plastic polymer film as tiny indentations just 10 nanometers , or millionths of a millimeter, in diameter.
In fact, it can exhibit ordered structures with length scales ranging from micrometers to nanometers .