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 [...]
Archive for the 'Healing/preserving environment' Category
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.
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.
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.
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.
Human life after advanced nanotechnology has been developed will be fundamentally different from life up until that point.
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.
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.
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.
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 Grist.org: In China, Tsinghua University researchers, with the help of Australian and Swiss scientists, [...]
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 [...]
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 [...]
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 [...]
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 [...]
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. [...]
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 [...]
MIT scientists have demonstrated the usefulness of biological frameworks for combining distinct functional elements to make a device.
The application is hydrophobic sand, which retains moisture near the roots of desert plants by virtue of a proprietary nanostructured coating on the grains of sand.
From the February 2009 issue of the “science is culture” publication Seed magazine, not yet online: Hypothesis: Civil Nanotechnology Starting in 2009, nanotech-based sensing will enable a level of environmental monitoring that could help reduce pollution tremendously. Such devices could be of immense benefit to the environment, but unfortunately, without careful attention they will trigger [...]
The following is an edited and revised version of the talk I gave at the Global Catastrophic Risks conference that was held in conjunction with Convergence 08 (and which I reprised for Convergence). I’m posting it here because it seems to me that this is exactly the kind of thing Foresight was founded for: to [...]