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Archive for the 'Nanotech' Category

DARPA announces new program on nanoscale assembly and integration

Posted by Jim Lewis on September 1st, 2014

Register by Sept. 5 to attend a Proposers Day webinar on either Sept. 9 or 11 to learn the technical objectives of DARPA’s new “Atoms to product: Aiming to make nanoscale benefits life-sized” program.

What kind of nanomachines will advanced nanotechnology use?

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 31st, 2014

An interview with UK nanotechnologist Richard Jones argues that the surest and most efficient path to advanced nanomachine function will incorporate or mimic biomolecular nanomachinery rather than scaled down rigid conventional machinery.

Seeing and touching a single synthetic molecular machine

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 24th, 2014

Attaching a 200-nm-diameter magnetic bead to a 1-nm diameter synthetic molecular machine allowed optical visualization of the motion of the machine and manipulation with a magnetic tweezers.

Recent cases of 'accessible' high-tech: Open source chips & Origami robots

Posted by Stephanie C on August 22nd, 2014

Nanotech promises more commonplace access to advanced technology as material and fabrication costs fall and traditional barriers to innovation are removed. Examples are already being seen globally: more access to laptops and cell phones in developing countries, desktop 3D printers, a surge in establishment of shared-use research facilities, etc. A couple recent cases getting attention [...]

Tunable Assembly of Nanoparticles for (Photovoltaic) Devices

Posted by Stephanie C on August 13th, 2014

Photovoltaics are an interesting case where atomic precision is not necessary to achieve potentially dramatic global impacts. Even an “ok efficiency” device that is easy to manufacture with reduced environmental hazard could have significant beneficial effects on energy resources and on device fabrication processes (which could, in turn, contribute to developments toward APM). The struggle [...]

Nanotechnology-based next generation memory nears mass production

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 10th, 2014

Rice University’s breakthrough nanoporous silicon oxide technology for resistive random-access memory (RRAM) appears poised for commercialization.

Emergence of nanobiotechnology points to importance of deep collaboration

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 8th, 2014

Study shows more than 500 firms involved in nanobiotechnology, which is expected to soon triple in size. Research points to the importance of broad networks and deep collaborations.

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.

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.