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Archive for the 'Nanotechnology' Category

Biotech lab in the cloud lowers entry barrier to nanotech research

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 5th, 2014

With biotech fundamental to several paths to advanced nanotechnology, a way to do biotech experiments in the cloud offers small groups the chance to quickly test their ideas.

TED talk: A 30-Year History of the Future

Posted by Stephanie C on July 29th, 2014

Nicholas Negroponte, founder of the MIT media lab and the One Laptop Per Child program, gave a TED talk in March 2014 titled A 30-Year History of the Future. Click to access the talk or the TEDBlog article discussing the talk. Negroponte highlights some cutting-edge technological developments of the past that had been openly scorned [...]

Building biological molecular machines as an open source path to advanced nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on July 24th, 2014

B.R.AI.N.S., Berkeley BioLabs, and Foresight Institute to build an open source biological parts repository and design and distribute a line of “How-to Build Biological Machines” educational kits.

The NNI Debate of 2014

Posted by Stephanie C on July 11th, 2014

Just when it seemed like debate over the National Nanotechnology Initiative was a thing of the past (see Foresight’s disappointment in 2008 here), disagreements regarding re-authorization and budget cuts are prompting politicians and researchers to take a detailed look at what the program supports and what it is achieving. Witnesses to the House Research Subcommittee [...]

The atomically precise manufacture of quantum dots

Posted by Jim Lewis on July 5th, 2014

Using an STM to precisely position indium adatoms on an indium arsenide surface, nanotechnologists have created a series of atomically precise quantum dots, and joined them with atomic precision to make quantum dot molecules, opening new avenues to construct practical quantum devices for computing and other applications.

Lipid coat protects DNA nanorobot from immune attack

Posted by Jim Lewis on July 5th, 2014

Enveloped DNA nanostructures were developed to escape attacks from nucleases and the immune system, opening a path to ever more sophisticated DNA nanomedical devices.

Photos from 2014 Foresight Technical Conference

Posted by Jim Lewis on June 24th, 2014

The photos from the 2014 Foresight Technical Conference highlight entrepreneurial efforts in space, biotechnology, and life extension.

Robust triangular RNA brick adds to RNA nanotechnology toolkit

Posted by Jim Lewis on June 24th, 2014

The complex molecular recognition code of RNA offers RNA nanotechnology a greater variety of 3D structures and functions than are present in DNA nanotechnology, but the RNA structures can be fragile. New RNA triangles that resist boiling solve this problem.

Novel properties for nanotechnology rebar-graphene reinforced with carbon nanotubes

Posted by Jim Lewis on June 9th, 2014

Carbon-containing functional groups decorating carbon nanotubes decompose upon heating on copper foil to form a nanotube-reinforced graphene with novel properties that mimic those of expensive indium-tin-oxide.

DNA nanotechnology replicates enzyme cascade

Posted by Jim Lewis on June 4th, 2014

A swinging DNA arm added to a DNA scaffold makes it possible for two enzymes attached to the scaffold to complete a coupled chemical reaction.

Expanded DNA alphabet provides more options for nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 14th, 2014

A bacterium has been engineered to stably propagate a DNA written with six letters instead of the usual four, greatly expanding the number of amino acids, both natural and synthetic, that can be genetically encoded. Further work could lead to novel proteins incorporating these additional amino acids, and from there to novel materials, devices, and machines.

Nanotechnology to provide efficient, inexpensive water desalination

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 12th, 2014

Two different nanotechnology-based approaches to use graphene as the basis for purification and desalination of water look promising.

Nanotechnology to provide better solar cells, optical devices

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 9th, 2014

A novel method to control the configuration of atoms in semiconductors grown on graphene will make possible a vast array of new optical devices, including better solar cells.

A bird's-eye view of half a century of nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 7th, 2014

Reviewing Eric Drexler’s Radical Abundance, Phil Bowermaster provides an informed and insightful overview of the controversies that greeted the proposal for a nanotechnology aimed at developing a practical technology for atomically precise manufacturing. Along the way he shows how Drexler’s outlook evolved from 1986 to 2013.

To fight inflammation nanoparticles turn 'naughty' neutrophils into 'nice' neutrophils

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 1st, 2014

By targeting the protein that attaches a type of immune cell called neutrophils to blood vessel walls where they cause serious tissues damage, the neutrophils are released and returned to the circulation to resume their normal functions.

Novel nanoparticle efficiently silences gene expression in liver cells

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 29th, 2014

RNA interference provides potential cures for various diseases by silencing the expression of specific genes in specific organs, but delivering the RNA molecules to the right place is very difficult. A novel nanoparticle provides unprecedented efficiency in silencing target genes in liver cells.

Physicists suppress 'stiction' force that bedevils microscale machinery

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 19th, 2014

A possible top-down path to atomically precise manufacturing that passes through microscale machinery might be rendered easier because of recent progress in suppressing the Casimir force, which contributes to the ‘stiction’ problem often encountered with microelectromechanical systems.

US government report highlights flaws in US nanotechnology effort

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 1st, 2014

The concern of the US GAO for a gap in nanomanufacturing is well-placed, but it is only half of the problem with the limited US vision of the impact of nanotechnology on the future world economy.

Programmable nanoprocessors integrated into a nanowire nanocomputer

Posted by Jim Lewis on March 30th, 2014

Pioneering a design and fabrication strategy to address individual nanoscale electronic devices to enable large-scale assembly into integrated computer circuits, a MITRE-Harvard team has assembled a functional nanoelectronic control computer.

Bigger, stiffer, roomier molecular cages from structural DNA nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on March 29th, 2014

Using struts made of DNA to stiffen polyhedral corners, scientists have build rigid DNA cages an order of magnitude larger than previous DNA nanostructures, and only one order of magnitude smaller than bacterial cells.