SMALL MATTER…… Before scientists could work with nanomaterials, they had to understand them. Quantum mechanics employ mathematics to predict the behavior of very small, discrete units of energy and matter.
The two scientists given the most credit for quantum mechanics are Max Planck, who conducted his famous ”Black Box ” experiment and learned that light was made up of specific ”quanta” of energy in 1900, and Niels Bohr, who used quantum mechanics as part of his description of how an atom works in 1992.
These were very good theories but tough to prove except in experiments that tested the behaviors of materials. In fact, Albert Einstein had proved the existence of atoms in1950, but the atom itself was just too small to see.
About 60 years later, in 1981, after obtaining a huge amount of experimental data atoms, the curtain over them lifted when researchers GerdBinnig and Heinrich Rohrer developed the first working scanning tunneling microscope.
While working at IBM Zurich Research Laboratories in Switzerland. It was the first microscope that gave scientists the ability to see atoms. By the end of the 20th century, the first commercial applications of nanotechnology hit the market.