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When it comes to science on a tiny scale, Charlotte is BIG
By Hannah Mitchell Bethany Woody fell in love while earning her doctorate degree at UNC Charlotte — in love with her future husband and with the branch of science that fascinated both of them. Nanotechnology, the discipline that sounds like it belongs in a “Star Trek” movie but that scientists are applying every day in labs all over the globe, seemed to Woody to offer limitless possibilities. When she and her husband, Shane, graduated in 2005, they started their own business, joining what has grown to about a dozen companies and research centers that make the Charlotte region one of the biggest nanotechnology centers in the state behind Research Triangle Park near Raleigh. Nanotechnology, or nanoscale science, allows the manipulation of materials on a tiny, tiny scale. Nanoscientists frequently use a measurement called a nanometer. To put that in perspective, consider that a piece of paper is about 100,000 nanometers thick.