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.
Archive for the 'Nanotechnology' Category
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
A new tool to chemically modify one specific carbon atom among several chemically very similar ones will facilitate building larger, more complex molecules for drug discovery and for nanotechnology.
A “sense of energy, momentum, and collegiality throughout the weekend” united attendees hearing about the integration of nano-engineered devices and materials into more complex systems, and the integration of nanoscale technologies into diverse applications.
A very large community of online gamers has consistently produced RNA designs that outperform the best design algorithms by a large margin. Can online gamers designing RNA, protein, and other molecules contribute to the development of atomically precise manufacturing?
A reconstituted high-density lipoprotein nanoparticle reduces inflammation in advanced atherosclerotic plaques in mice. Will it work in humans to prevent repeat heart attacks and stroke?
A DNA clamp engineered for higher specificity and higher affinity may improve cancer diagnosis and treatment and may also mean better control over building nanomachines.
A possible forerunner to a future molecular assembly line uses an artificial DNA motor to transport an artificial nanoparticle along a carbon nanotube track.
A study of RNA structures actually present in cells reveals that cells spend energy restricting thermodynamically driven RNA folding so that fewer RNA structures are found in cells than in test tubes.
A recently released technology report titled Nano-solutions for the 21st century outlines nanotech-based solutions to global challenges. Several years in the making, the report was co-authored by Dennis Pamlin, Research Fellow at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences Research Center for Sustainable Development (RCSD web site currently in Chinese only), and Eric Drexler, Academic Visitor [...]
A collection of open access journals on a variety of topics provides a very useful entry point to the rapidly growing collection of scientific, technical, and scholarly research that is not hidden behind pay walls.
Design and prediction are integral to Atomically Precise Manufacturing and its development. This is in part because fully functional APM can be readily explored computationally today, to levels of precision that cannot be experimentally developed today. In such a context, design is not just a resource but an approach. With rapidly expanding computational power, examples [...]
At the 2013 Conference Philip Moriarty presented non-contact Atomic Force Microscope experiments demonstrating mechanical toggling of silicon dimers on a silicon surface. The crucial role of precise control of probe tip structure was emphasized.
Using DNA nanotechnology to control and organize molecular motors and the molecular tracks that they run on, a novel nanotrain transports molecular cargos tens of micrometers.
A new book by Frank Boehm explores the challenges, possibilities, and visions of nanomedical device and systems design.