Mihail Roco, Senior NSF Advisor on nanotech, gave a plenary talk at the Nanoethics conference recently. One of his slides was on synthesis and control of nanomachines, and noted that about 300 projects had been funded in 2004. Later he referred me to two websites: the NSE site where he said were listed 50-60 NNI-funded centers focused on 3rd-4th generation nanomachines/nanosystems, and the NNI site where a search on awards would show 300-400 grants with nanomachine or nanosystem in the title or abstract. Read More for the results and request for help. The NSE site is a conference program. I assume Dr. Roco was referring me to his slides. I was unable to find the list of 50-60 centers on nanomachines/nanosystems — can anyone assist? On the NNI site, I did an award search ("search all fields") on nanomachine* or nanosystem*, trying various approaches, and in all cases got "Nothing found to display." Same result for other keywords. This isn't right — again, I could use some help here.
Unfortunately, "nanosystem" has been used to refer to "systems" as simple as buckyballs, and of course nanomachines includes structures without atomic precision. So we will need to do a lot more work to see how many grants are actually on the bottom-up pathway to molecular manufacturing.