[ nan-oh, ney-noh ]
/ ˈnæn oʊ, ˈneɪ noʊ /


Informal. nanotechnology.

Origin of nano

by shortening

Definition for nano (2 of 2)


a combining form with the meaning “very small, minute,” used in the formation of compound words (nanoplankton); in the names of units of measure it has the specific sense “one billionth” (10-9): nanomole; nanosecond.
Also nanno-; especially before a vowel, nan-.

Origin of nano-

combining form representing Greek nânos, nánnos dwarf Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for nano

British Dictionary definitions for nano


combining form

denoting 10 –9nanosecond Symbol: n
indicating extreme smallnessnanoplankton

Word Origin for nano-

from Latin nānus dwarf, from Greek nanos
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for nano


introduced 1947 (at 14th conference of the Union Internationale de Chimie) as a prefix for units of one thousand-millionth part, from Greek nanos "a dwarf." According to Watkins, this is originally "little old man," from nannos "uncle," masc. of nanna "aunt" (see nana). Earlier it was used as a prefix to mean "dwarf, dwarfish," and still in a non-scientific sense of "very small."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for nano



Extremely small:nanoid.
One-billionth (10-9):nanometer.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for nano


A prefix that means:
Very small or at a microscopic level, as in nanotube. In this sense, this prefix is sometimes spelled nanno-, as in nannoplankton.
One billionth, as in nanosecond, one billionth of a second.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.