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Alternative titles for this job include

Nanotechnologists manipulate molecules and atoms to design and create new materials and devices.

Average salary (a year)

£27,000 Starter


£55,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

39 to 41 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends occasionally

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Nanotechnologist

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • working towards this role


You'll usually need a degree or a postgraduate master's qualification in nanotechnology, or a related course which includes nanotechnology.

Relevant courses include:

  • nanoscience
  • physics
  • chemistry
  • electronics engineering
  • materials science
  • computer science

Some employers may expect you to have, or be working towards, a PhD. This is especially so in the fields of medicine and healthcare nanotechnology.

Employers value work experience. It may help to study for a degree that includes research experience in the industry you want to work in. You could look for work placements with nanotechnology companies.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or 3 A levels, or equivalent, including maths and a science for a degree
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study

More Information


It may be possible to start as a nanotechnology research assistant or graduate industrial scientist after leaving university. You would usually need to study part time for a PhD while you work.

UK Research and Innovation and industrial companies sometimes offer studentships. This would give you the opportunity to do a PhD while getting practical research experience.

More Information

Career tips

Research into nanotechnology applications takes place in many different sectors, like:

  • aerospace and biotechnology
  • healthcare and manufacturing
  • engineering, materials science and computing

Examples include, miniature computer chips, targeted drug delivery systems and extra strong materials.

Further information

You can find out more about careers in nanotechnology through Nanowerk and the Institute of Physics.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • science skills
  • maths knowledge
  • knowledge of engineering science and technology
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • knowledge of physics
  • analytical thinking skills
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • persistence and determination
  • to have a thorough understanding of computer systems and applications

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

As a nanotechnologist, you could:

  • investigate how materials behave at the nanoscale - 1 billionth of a metre
  • analyse experimental data
  • design instruments that can work at tiny scales
  • simulate nanotechnology applications using computer modelling
  • develop ways to manipulate materials and create new systems and devices
  • write up and present research findings and publish articles
  • work closely with industry to scale up commercial production

Working environment

You could work in a laboratory.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could lead or manage a team of scientists in a research and development department of a commercial or public organisation.

You could also open up opportunities for career development by gaining Chartered Scientist status.

A further option is to move into higher education and combine your research interests with academic teaching.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a Nanotechnologist right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Access to HE - Science

  • Provider: Harrow, Richmond & Uxbridge Colleges (HRUC)
  • Start date: 16 September 2024
  • Location: Twickenham

Access to HE: Science

  • Start date: 09 September 2024
  • Location: Ipswich

Jobs In the United Kingdom

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