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Archive for the 'Healing/preserving environment' Category

Catalytic micromotors demonstrate carbon dioxide removal from water

Posted by Jim Lewis on September 29th, 2015

A micromotor covered with the enzyme carbonic anhydrase zips through water rapidly converting dissolved carbon dioxide to the bicarbonate ion, which can then be precipitated as calcium carbonate.

Atomically precise boron doping of graphene nanoribbons

Posted by Jim Lewis on September 28th, 2015

The ability to dope graphene nanoribbons with boron atoms to atomic precision opens a range of possible new applications, from chemical sensing to nanoelectronics to photocatalysis to battery electrodes.

Nanowires and bacteria harnessed for artificial photosynthesis

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 4th, 2015

A prototype system to produce chemicals and fuels from sequestered carbon dioxide, water, and sunlight uses semiconductor nanowires to produce electron-hole pairs, which are then used by two types of bacteria to produce oxygen and a variety of useful chemical products.

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.

Studying environmental impacts of nanoparticles using mesocosms

Posted by Stephanie C on February 28th, 2013

The advent of new technologies is typically followed by new government regulation, and in the absence of data, fear-based reactionism can have far too much influence on policy. Quality research studies on real risks and impacts of nanoscale technologies can help lead to legitimate scientific consensus and appropriate regulation. Engineered nanoparticles draw particular attention, because [...]

Christine Peterson on pushing the future in a positive direction

Posted by Jim Lewis on February 20th, 2013

In a 47-minute interview Christine Peterson discusses the future that science and technology is bringing over the next few decades, and how to get involved to push the future in a positive direction.

Christine Peterson interviewed on nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on February 12th, 2013

An interview with Foresight Co-Founder and Past President Christine Peterson covering both the current state and the future prospects of nanotechnology is available on Youtube.

Nanosponges to recover spilled oil (includes video)

Posted by Jim Lewis on May 7th, 2012

Doping carbon nanotubes with boron while they are being formed produces a novel molecular architecture formed by boron induced kinks and linkages. These nanosponges can be used repeatedly to absorb and retrieve or burn spilled oil.

Panel recommends research to manage health and environmental risks of nanomaterials

Posted by Jim Lewis on January 28th, 2012

A National Academy of Sciences panel has recommended a four-part research effort focused on preventing and managing any potential health and environmental risks of nanomaterials.

Foresight co-founder among panelists discussing role of technology in human existence

Posted by Jim Lewis on January 23rd, 2012

Human life after advanced nanotechnology has been developed will be fundamentally different from life up until that point.

Lecture by Eric Drexler at Oxford on physical law and the future of nanotechnology (video)

Posted by Jim Lewis on December 6th, 2011

In a lecture at Oxford Eric Drexler argued that atomically precise manufacturing will be the next great revolution in the material basis of civilization, and discussed how we can establish reliable knowledge about key aspects of such technologies.

Green Nanotechnology Roadmap Highlights Opportunities and Challenges

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 23rd, 2011

A green nanotechnology roadmap released by the American Chemical Society describes the opportunities and barriers to developing commercial applications of nanomaterials that present little threat of harm to health and the environment, and concludes with an action agenda to more forward.

Toxicity of silver nanoparticles on Arctic soil

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 10th, 2011

Research showing a toxic effect of silver nanoparticles on nitrogen-fixing bacteria in Arctic soil demonstrates the need for more research on nanoparticle environment, health, and safety.

Donate your laptop time to nanotech R&D for clean water

Posted by Christine Peterson on September 9th, 2010

Projects exist for aggregating personal computers into one large project for various worthy purposes, from space to biology research, some nanotech-related such a protein folding.  Now IBM has a similar project with the goal of developing nanotechnologies for clean water.  From In China, Tsinghua University researchers, with the help of Australian and Swiss scientists, [...]

Single-atom sheet of carbon clears arsenic from water

Posted by Christine Peterson on July 15th, 2010

We can get a hint of the power coming from longer-term nanotech by seeing what is being discovered today on how to use some of the new materials becoming available.  Many of us have been intrigued with graphene, a one-atom-thick planar sheet of bonded carbon atoms.  It’s no surprise that exciting applications are being found [...]

Vote and comment on IMM/Foresight statement to President’s Council

Posted by Christine Peterson on June 1st, 2010

The U.S. President’s Council on Advisors on Science and Technology requested public input on a number of manufacturing topics including “molecular-level, atomically precise production.” Foresight joined with our sister organization IMM to produce a statement on Atomically Precise Manufacturing, now posted on the OpenPCAST site, with public voting and commenting still continuing, so join in the [...]

“Oceans”: it’s what keeps us working toward nanotech

Posted by Christine Peterson on May 18th, 2010

For many of us, it’s our desire to preserve and restore the environment that brought us into the work of pursuing molecular nanotechnology in the first place.  How do we keep going over the decades that this goal is taking to accomplish? One way is to restore our enthusiasm for the goal through films such [...]

Nanotechnology and life extension: challenge & response

Posted by Christine Peterson on May 10th, 2010

The Mark, “Canada’s daily online forum for news, commentary, and debate,” has published a commentary that primarily takes a negative view of the use of nanotech (or any tech) for life extension: Extreme life extension raises other interesting, yet troubling questions. Significant life extension could have serious implications for individual identity; what if we change [...]

Solar cells with nanocrystal ink reach 18 percent efficiency

Posted by Christine Peterson on September 21st, 2009

Josh Hall, on his way to catch a plane, sends us this news from Technology Review’s Katherine Bourzac: A California company is using silicon ink patterned on top of silicon wafers to boost the efficiency of solar cells. The Sunnyvale, CA, firm Innovalight says that the inkjet process is a cheaper route to more-efficient solar power. [...]

Saving the Planet

Posted by J. Storrs Hall on July 24th, 2009

The word “planet” means wanderer. The ancients, with their lives lived largely outdoors and without artificial lighting, were much more intimately acquainted with the heavens than are we moderns, unless we specialize in astronomy. They noticed that although there was a fixed pattern of stars for the most part, some of them wandered around in [...]