Home Technology This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
Technology By Joe Burgett -

Nanotechnology is often misunderstood as being just like normal robotics or even connected to artificial intelligence, but it is neither of those things. It’s a branch of technology that deals with dimensions and tolerances of less than 100 nanometers, which means manipulating atoms and molecules on an individual level. A nanometer is equal to one billionth of a meter, and it takes 100 centimeters to make a meter. That’s how small we’re talking about here. Imagine trying to work with technology at this minuscule scale – it’s virtually invisible when isolated and can be placed anywhere. But here’s the catch: many fear that this kind of technology could overtake humanity. And who can blame them? The power to manipulate matter on such a small scale is both exciting and terrifying. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the potential of nanotechnology and why it’s important to approach it with caution.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
[Image via Seeker – YouTube]

Brain Takeover

Nanotechnology could pose quite a huge threat when we develop it more. One area that has been discussed is the concept of controlling the brain. Nanoscale devices and materials are already being developed right now. Look no further than Elon Musk who has been pushing the idea of a brain chip or “Neural Link” that is supposed to help humans keep level with future artificial intelligence. Yet the problem with nanotechnology in this department is that it can be used to potentially read a person’s mind and/or invade their privacy. Small brain control can be done such as speaking to someone, making them assume they are hearing voices. This type of thing could influence a person or group’s actions. Not only could it affect them emotionally, but it could cause them to do some terrible things.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Genetic Engineering

We all know by now that scientists have already begun altering the human genetic code. A lot of this has to do with potentially removing problems such as hereditary diseases that could affect a person in the future. Yet genetic editing does not stop here, as several national armed forces groups have scientists working on ways to engineer what would essentially be a super soldier. Yes, the whole “Captain America” concept is in development. Of course, genetic engineering does not stop with the armed forces as it will become a popular concept in the future. However, doing this at a nano level could have unintended consequences for the evolution of humanity and the diversity of other living organisms.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Artificial Intelligence

While artificial intelligence on its own has been considered a potential hazard for the future of humanity, it won’t be alone. Nanotechnology will likely be the best way it’ll be able to do some sort of hostile takeover. If there are future artificial intelligence technologies based within nanoscale technology, we could be in trouble. Of course, the idea of doing this makes a lot of sense as that type of tech could be massively helpful to humanity. However, what if this AI developed autonomy and gained control over critical systems? AI that is more sophisticated than anything we’ve seen today that can also work within a nanotech territory? May God have mercy on our souls.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Contaminating Humanity Via Accidental Poisoning

There has been a lot of discussion surrounding the idea of using nanotechnology to help clean up the Earth’s oceans. Things such as the Great Garbage Patch could be gone entirely if we do this. On top of that, ecosystems that have been negatively impacted by our garbage or radioactive runoff could be cleaned up. While nanotech “could” do this, that also means it has the power to do the total opposite. It could quite easily contaminate our water and poison foods. That could lead to widespread illnesses and diseases, some of which we have not seen in over one hundred years. That could have a devastating impact on our society.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Goodbye To Critical Infrastructure

Nanotechnology is obviously quite small, allowing it to pretty much go anywhere one would want it to. This is good as it could quite literally allow humans to do things that we never could before. Yet this is also part of the problem, as it could enter pretty much anywhere to disrupt things we need. Important infrastructure like power grids, communication networks, and even transportation systems can all be damaged or at the very least altered. That could cause several problems that would cripple several cities all over the world. This sort of thing can also impact economies, causing potential nationwide ramifications. It would likely impact smaller nations the quickest but would also affect larger nations relatively fast too.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Weather Control

One big area where nanotechnology has been discussed is in the realm of weather control. We sort of already have a way of doing this by putting “seeds” into clouds to essentially cause rain to occur. Cloud seeding is not perfect and isn’t totally reliable, but with nanotechnology, we could likely fix this issue. Let’s say California is experiencing a 90-day drought without any rain. Nanotech could be used to cause rain in the area to prevent potential wildfires. While this is legitimately a great thing, weather manipulation could quite easily become a huge problem. We could cause rain but what if this also causes severe hurricanes or tornadoes, as well as major flooding issues? Just changing the temperature or humidity in the air could affect normal weather patterns which could cause global problems too!

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Energy Improvements

Nanotechnology has the power to help humanity in a big way by assisting in the creation of new forms of energy. This is clearly beneficial to the human race and would bring countless benefits. However, that is only if the development goes off without any problems. The risk of developing new forms of energy is immense and nanotechnology getting out of control could cause new types of accidents and worldwide disasters. Not only could this harm our environment, but we’re also potentially causing issues with our own health. Sure, improving the world of energy would be very helpful. However, there are limitations to what we can do here.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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High Radiation

Nanotechnology possesses the power to help rid our planet of unnecessary radiation, yet it also has the power to create an immense amount too. On top of this, nanotech could even be used to create more powerful particle beams too. Both of these could be a huge asset to the world of healthcare and even the processing of materials. However, the fact that it has the power to remove or create radiation makes it quite dangerous. In fact, if nanotech managed to get out of control or if someone wanted to use it for terrible purposes…they could certainly go this route. Where radiation could be used to harm either a certain group of people or even the entire planet. This would, obviously, also cause a lot of problems for the environment too.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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The Creation Of New Propulsion Systems

SpaceX (among others) has proven that there are new ways propulsion can be looked at, and we’ve also seen improvements in electric transportation too. Both show that we can improve in this area without nanotechnology. Yet with nanoscale devices, we could reinvent the wheel nearly. Things like space travel will be where new nanotech will likely be used. Here, we’ll likely see it create new propulsion systems that blow every other space transportation system out of the water. It is also possible we could see the creation of an antimatter engine or wormhole generator due to nanotech. Yet this is all very misunderstood and could pose a major threat to human life if things were to malfunction. Plus, this is not even addressing the potential harm other sentient life could present.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
[Image via Joe Burgett/MidJourneyAI]

The Security Threat

Nanotechnology is going to present a lot of problems for security systems, and well, security overall. New forms of encryption and data storage will be made using nanotech, which is kind of part of the problem here. This could result in the creation of more sophisticated cyber attacks as well as violate the privacy of billions. On top of this, there is a likelihood we’ll use nanotech for new forms of sensors and monitoring systems. Yet again, this presents a problem as such technology could be used to violate people’s privacy. Basically, if nanotech became sentient one day…this type of connection to security systems would give them all they need to end humanity without much effort being needed.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Communication & Networking

Nanotechnology will be a huge asset to the communications industry. It will bring about a lot of advanced tech for communicating with people worldwide, so much so that current social media will be a thing of the past. This ability to network with anyone, whenever we need to do so, will be a massive asset. Not just for parents who want to speak to their kids at college but also for businesses. For example, this could be a big asset for delivery systems. However, let’s say you order pharmaceutical drugs or even food. This new nanotech will make deliveries more precise. Yet what if nanotech itself or someone using it could use this knowledge and overall tech against us? That is a real possibility with something like this.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Using Entertainment Against Us

New technology such as projectors and new televisions are hitting the market all the time. We already have our first 8k television, and will potentially see more advanced forms of virtual reality as well as augmented reality systems. Things such as the Holodeck seen on Star Trek could be a reality eventually. However, if nanotechnology is used in all of this, it could be used to develop new forms of art/entertainment that might have psychological or physiological effects on people. Of course, nanotech being used in entertainment will bring us wonderful and immersive new forms of art and entertainment experiences. However, there is also a risk that it could provide negative side effects that could alter a person’s mental and/or physical health.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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The Change In Medication

New medications are being made all the time, but it is said that nanotechnology will potentially help to change healthcare for the better eventually. This could be using this tech for surgical procedures as well as possibly even doing direct removal of cancer cells. However, one of the biggest things it will help with initially is the development of new and more powerful forms of medications. There are two issues with this though. If new medications can be powerful, that also means street drugs could become that way too. On top of this, powerful drugs could be useful but also perhaps force people to develop a habit that makes addiction a lot easier. On top of this, powerful drugs could be too much for our current human form to handle. Thus, there is a higher chance of death even if drugs clear federal testing.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Camo & Stealth

It has long been said that nanotechnology will first be used by the military, just as all new tech seems to be used. Things such as cell phones and GPS began with military use first, as just a few examples of this. Nanotechnology has also been assumed as the answer to the development of better camouflage and stealth technology that can essentially make a person impossible to see. However, the same tech that gives us something like this can also create more powerful military weapons and defense systems. Sure, this will bring about massive advantages for militaries. However, that is also the problem in a nutshell. It will be used not just by the U.S. Armed Forces but also by places such as Russia and China. We could literally start a new arms race with this stuff.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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We referenced already how nanotech could affect things like entertainment. However, this also means it could likely be used to deliver new forms of psychological warfare and propaganda. We’ve already seen how much of an impact social media plays, without really needing to do much to cause problems. People just naturally seem to fear specific things and will always have something to validate that. Facebook among others uses Google ads, which are targeted to what a person is looking up on their own. Now imagine if these issues pushed on social media became more immersive. The impact this will have on the world of public opinion and how social behavior changes will be a huge issue. Nanotechnology will not theoretically but will literally be part of this problem.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Environmental Analysis

Nanotechnology will be a major asset for us when it comes to evaluating the environment. Various equipment will be used to help keep track of potential environmental disasters before they happen as well as ways we can possibly fix areas of the environment. This might also come with new environmental monitoring and analysis. It could be incredibly useful and come with tons of benefits. Yet you must realize that if the environment can be monitored, this means that the same tech could be used to invade your privacy. Evaluation and analysis capabilities will be high, which might mean this same tech could gather sensitive and private information about people that no one else but you would have access to or knowledge of otherwise.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Robotics & Automation

It should come as no surprise that nanotechnology could enhance our already impressive robotics industry. Nanotech will be a major asset to this industry within the next decade alone, but this is where the problem comes into play. While the world of robotics and automation will improve, there is also a major risk of job loss as this occurs. Just look at how factories changed when automation became widespread in that industry. On top of this, nanotech could be used to make the robotics industry more dangerous than it already is. Some might think of this as pure science fiction, but trust us, it is certainly possible that this occurs. In fact, most people actually have come to expect it by now.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Impact on Warfare

We already referenced how the military will likely use nanotechnology, however, it goes much deeper for that issue. Nanotech can be used to create more powerful explosives, potentially even more powerful nuclear weapons. Some explosives can be made to deliver higher amounts of toxic or radioactive materials with much greater precision. There is also the possibility that nanotech could enhance some soldiers. We are not talking about a super soldier serum like a new form of Captain America. Rather, this might be used for things like exosuits. The U.S. Military is planning on deploying new exosuits this year called “SABERs” or “Soldier Assistive Bionic Exosuit for Resupply.” Just imagine how this tech could become even more enhanced with nanotechnology.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
[Image via Joe Burgett/MidJourneyAI]


We already referenced how nanotechnology could be used to assist in cleaning up the environment. Yet you should also be aware that our current renewable resources will likely be used more effectively due to nanotechnology. This is, ultimately good, which one shouldn’t complain about. However, by creating more powerful forms of renewable resources or extraction, nanotech could actually do more harm to the environment if it is not controlled properly. Heck, our current renewables like solar energy can be quite effective. Just imagine, however, if this became too powerful. We’d potentially get radiation poisoning ourselves and our environment could be horribly impacted. Therefore, nanotech could be great for renewables but also very harmful too.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Intellectual Property Trouble

We’re already seeing how artificial intelligence art is causing a huge stir among those in the art community. Some believe this artwork is straight-up theft while others recognize an AI system is trained using a lot of images. Yet, in the end, it creates something completely unique the bulk of the time. Regardless of which side of this fence you’re on, this issue with AI is nothing compared to what nanotech might bring us. Nanoscale designs could become its own industry that might use tricks similar to what AI uses now. Some processes with this nanotech could be patented and multiple legal issues might come from it. In fact, it could even result in the limitation of access to this technology and future innovations with it. All of which would throw the intellectual property concept into turmoil.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Nanotechnology is likely going to be a huge asset to the transportation industry. Things like roads and bridges, among other infrastructure, could be built better and more efficiently using this tech. On top of that, nanotech could likely help us to finally usher in a true self-driving car system. None of this could be bad, right? To a degree, of course not. However, there is still a risk that unintended consequences could come from this. For example, nanotech could use methods to do this that might impact the environment negatively. There is also a possible risk that chemicals could be released or used that impact human health.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Space Travel

We all know that new technology will likely be used as we humans begin to travel through space. No exploration crew from our planet will leave without some form of nanotechnology. Exploration crews will surely benefit from this tech that could potentially be used in numerous places. While nanotech will surely be used for a lot of major things, there is a possibility that it could become problematic. This might affect just the crew of a specific ship, but it might also affect other exploratory vessels from our planet too. Moreover, we could potentially cause problems with other celestial bodies. There is also no telling how our nanotech could be used with things like alien technology.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
[Image via Joe Burgett/MidJourney AI]

Energy Storage

To store energy, we have to do quite a lot of things. Of course, this is all dependent on the energy being stored. For example, the Tesla corporation has something known as the “Powerwall.” It stores the energy you are not using and can even store solar energy for backup power if you start to run out for some reason. This is quite useful for times when your power goes out, such as during a storm. Nanotechnology will be able to blow this out of the water, where energy storage becomes even greater. Transmission of energy will also be an area where nanotech might be a huge asset. Yet there is always an issue where environmental problems come from this, as well as the possibility this could become a human hazard.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
[Image via Science Sensei – Joe Burgett]

Geological Manipulation

You’ve likely seen video games such as No Man’s Sky where you’re able to manipulate the world around you, quite literally, to develop specific things. Like if you want a mountain or hill gone or moved somewhere. This is something a lot of builders would love to be able to do. Nanotechnology could likely be developed to create powerful geophysical or geological manipulation technology. However, this is quite a dangerous thing for just anyone to have. It could cause issues such as earthquakes and even make nearby volcanoes erupt, even before they might normally do so. Obviously, this is not a good thing.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Time Travel

This might be considered the most theoretical on our list, but nanotechnology is clearly a potential asset to time travel. It is very likely that any time machine or any form of travel in space that affects time will use nanotechnology in some way. Naturally, there is always a risk that if we are able to somehow break the known laws of physics and go back in time, one could see how harmful that could be. Meanwhile, we know the laws of physics allow us to travel into the future at a pace much faster than what we experience on Earth. This can only be done in space, considering it involves only “spacetime” and does not connect to the time of any planet. Thus, nanotech could potentially cause a person to go into the distant future yet be incapable of getting them back to their previous time.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
[Image via Paramount Global]


Yet another in the science fiction column for our list, teleportation is something many find to be theoretical for now. However, the laws of physics do not completely claim it to be impossible. Therefore, we cannot rule it out for the future. Most people believe that nanotechnology will most certainly be used for teleportation or some form of matter transportation. There are a lot of things to consider about this, however. First, there is the issue of how much energy it will take to teleport people anywhere. Second, it is the integrity of the matter one must consider too. The question most have is…will what I teleport away actually be what I teleported or a copy of it? This would then draw the question of…if I teleport somewhere, am “I” the one teleporting, or is it a copy of me?

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Security & Surveillance

Clearly, beefing up our current security and surveillance systems will be a big improvement. Nanotechnology can be great for this as it will allow us to properly secure our homes, businesses, and even national borders. The issue is the ethical side of this, which most people do not consider when it comes to this field. For example, sensors using nanotechnology could be used to monitor a person’s actions and movements. This is a violation of their personal privacy and can be abused. Sure, if the police are trying to find a criminal then using this improved surveillance or sensor systems will be useful. However, one has to wonder how much it’ll be used. Will there be any safeguards in place to protect people from this type of technology, especially from those seeking to abuse it for control?

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Nanotech And Human Health

When nanotechnology is used, and it is likely to be used quite a lot, there is a lot to consider. How much is too much, in this area? There is a possibility that nanoparticles or other nanomaterials could be inhaled, ingested, and even absorbed through the skin. If this occurs, one could be harmed by the toxicity of these nanomaterials. Many believe due to the small nature of these devices, things such as a technological super virus could be deployed by enemies. Due to the ability to control this virus, unlike actual viruses, we’d have a health nightmare that could wipe out entire regions. Something that no vaccine could cure or help us to prevent/help us through it.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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Unintentional Or Accidental Release

Again, there is a lot that nanotechnology can do for us. However, there is just as much we have to worry about too. Since nano-materials have different physical, chemical, and biological properties than their larger counterparts, problems could exist. For example, we know we should avoid highly radioactive materials and there will usually be signs up telling us where they are. Yet what if you could come across the exact or higher radiation as a place like Chernobyl but in a small nano-size piece of technology? There is also the possibility that nanotech could accumulate living organisms and interact with the environment, both of which could have massive impacts on the world. We should not just use nanotech because it is there and we must evaluate all potential issues before they become problematic.

This Is How Nanotechnology Could Overtake Humanity
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The Dangers Of Self-Replication

Nanotechnology might be incredibly helpful but what about the problem that many worry about most when it comes to nanotech? It is possible that nanomachines could self-replicate, which might be their intended design. This might be done as a way to “heal” armor or infrastructure to avoid the need to buy new materials. However, if this got out of hand and the nanomachines begin to replicate uncontrollably, we have a huge problem. These machines would begin to consume all matter on the planet just to keep replicating. While “technically” possible, these machines would have to overcome a lot of physical, chemical, and biological barriers that they are likely incapable of doing. At least, as far as we know as of this writing.


Where Do We Find This Stuff? Here Are Our Sources:

National Institutes of Health

European Union Department for Health & Human Safety

National Nanotechnology Initiative

Northwestern International Institute for Nanotechnology

Electronic Privacy & Information Center

Syracuse University

The Washington Post

Nanografi Nano Technology