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Viruses begin to do nanotechnology construction at MIT

From the Popular Mechanics Breakthrough Awards for 2006, MIT’s Angela Belcher and colleagues are using viruses to build at the molecular level:

Innovators: Angela Belcher, Yet-Ming Chiang, Paula Hammond

MIT scientists reached a major nanotech milestone: re-engineering a virus to create a self-assembling product.

THE GOAL OF nanofabrication is to make tiny machines build themselves using molecules they grab from their surroundings. It’s easy to dismiss the concept as science fiction — or hype. Until you hear what’s been going on in the lab of MIT materials scientist Angela Belcher, a star in nanotechnology circles.

Working with colleagues Paula Hammond and Yet-Ming Chiang, Belcher genetically altered a virus, the M-13 bacteriophage, inducing it to grab a pair of conductive metals — cobalt oxide and gold — from a solution. As the viruses rearrange themselves, they form highly aligned organic nanowires that can be used as a lithium-ion battery electrode — one so densely packed it can store two or three times the energy of conventional electrodes of the same size and weight.

Angela Belcher gets a great deal of attention, but also check out her chemical engineering colleague Paula Hammond‘s list of awards. Materials scientist Yet-Ming Chiang may have a similar list but it’s not on his home page. However, his work has resulted “in the discovery of a way for structures to make incremental adjustments—essentially, to morph—on demand.” Cool.

Using nature’s nanotechnology to move toward a general capability for atomically-precise manufacturing has been a pathway of interest at MIT since the earliest days of nanotech in the late ’70s. Good to see it moving forward! —Christine

11 Responses to “Viruses begin to do nanotechnology construction at MIT”

  1. Andrew Says:

    Congratulations to Angela Belcher, Paula Hammond and Yet-Ming Chiang for this step forward, these are the people who in the future will be hailed as the pioneer of the new self-assembly era. It is good to know that there are dedicated professional people doing this research.

  2. Marc Manspeaker Says:

    I’m very excited about this discovery that stops the bleeding. It will be very valuable in medicine and may some day save my own life. The discovery of and the development of nano batteries is very interesting considering the many possible uses. I am wondering, though, would it be dangerous to use electronic nano batteries in the body? I have epilepsy and have found that floricent light bulbs that flicker have been the spark that will litterally cause a grand mall seizer. Slight electronics can cause that problem with me. I am interested in the use and development of nano medicines. I think that this may repair the brain damage that I have from the years of medications. The last MRI that I have, shows that I have extensive brain damage on the top of my brain. The neurologist said that the damage was caused by dilantin. I am fifty three and have used dilantin since I was seventeen. Now I am using Keppra. With great success. Do you think that nano technology will be able to solve the damage that has been done?

    Marc Manspeaker

  3. Anonymous Says:

    This is great stuff indeed!
    Maybe she could use this technique with other materials for self-assembly (carbon prehaps).
    This would probably help see in which direction to go with the materials that would have higher strength, and be lighter then normally produced materials!

  4. Marc MANSPEAKER Says:

    I have been writing on and have mentioned nano-tech as a viable product for the development of the brain. Possibly using silicon with nano-tech to improve the brain or repair the brain damage. Cloning the brain or the entire body with rapid gentic engineering in and under laboratory conditions for the use of what I call a total body transplant. Full Body cloning. transfering your energy, which is molecular into a blank tablet clone. Actually transfering your self into a new body. Improving the brain with atomic sculptering and nano-tech.

    Marc Manspeaker
    Spacing Association

  5. shrinivas Says:

    i am really delighted to hear about such an invention and i heartily congratulate Angela Belcher, Paula Hammond and Yet-Ming Chiang for their hardwork for the welfare of mankind. i am eager to know more about this subject. and i’m sure that this will change the whole perspective of re-engineering and nanofabrication. I Wish whoever is dedicated to this field.

  6. marc manspeaker Says:

    After reviewing by notation on nano-tech, I think we should consider the use of silicone technology instead of or perhaps including this product in atomic sculpturing. I have notice the development of silicon in nano-tech and I think we need to consider the use of silicone. Please inform your organization of this correction.

    Marc Manspeaker


  7. marc manspeaker Says:

    I know there is contamination within the Constigation Technologies that needs to be eliminated. After that, we could do a Satilite Filtration on the entire system of techs of the thousand point of light technologies. Elimination of Bugs from Outer Space is evident and necessary. We must delite and dematerialize the vibers and ants of outer space in every dimention by satilite technologies. Now I am not sure if my Spacing Association Satilites are real or facts but they do exist. Cleansing the advanced deminationa geo-metric system is necessary. Then we will be able to free many members from the constigation technologies.
    Marc Brian Manspeaker
    year: 2011 real year unknown

  8. marc manspeaker Says:

    I would like to recommend the use of:
    Ross Equipment for repairs and building.
    Pearson Engineering Associates Inc.
    KC auto paint Arizona
    These three buisnesses will help The Religion of Total Body Transplant to repair, rebuild and develope into the local, state, and National including Satilite locations.
    Marc Manspeaker

  9. marc manspeaker Says:

    Lets try to rebuild the existing local, state and county areas for redevelopment and repairs.

  10. marc manspeaker Says:

    We need to use Center line to back of curb benchmarks & trigonometry math for the repair of parking lot and roadways. Bethany Home rd. & nineteenth ave. to Cactus rd. need to be repaved to precision. About five mile of Phoenix Az Also: From 19th. Ave to 59th. Ave need to be repaved to precision with the use of trigonometry. Remove the existing asphalt and then replace with new asphalt
    Fiber optics for trafic control and electrical lines both below ground and above ground will be a must. Lower constigation significantly. From center line to center line. Locate all bench marks by satilite. Use the Code Compliance of the City you are building under. The use of latex or silicone cement will be needed. We need to locate by satellite twenty feet deep. We will need the Topographical Plates of the Job Site. Both Territorial, Pioneering, and State Plates. Including County and City Plates.

    My bid on this job is: one point five million dollar per mile.
    The payment will be the use of “The Precious Metals Standard”
    Also: their is information on the Comments list if you check under the Blog titled “Mafia Seen as Another Terrorist Group” paper.
    The gold or silver payment must have on the bars of metal: MBM-pi-m-delta. the symbols of this. The metals must have been mined in the State of Arizona and belong to me.

    Use the Neo-Tech Constitution in building.
    The use of working class that are neo-tech convert will be necessary. Use my blog titled “Political Prisoner” and “Sovereign Rights”.

    Marc Manspeaker

  11. marc manspeaker Says:

    I would like to present a proposal:

    Phoenix, Arizona;

    Frome Northern Ave. to McDowel Rd. – 19th. Ave. to 75th. Ave.
    Rebuilding and repair.
    Bid will include the use of trigonomitry for the equipment and survey of this location.
    I will need to have a satilite survey documented by NASA.
    20ft. above ground and 20ft. below ground.
    All benchmarks must be located.
    Also the total repair and rebuilding including foundations and rafters of roof if necessary.
    The use of Sand Blasters.
    Power Spayers for the cleansing of the oils and dirt deposits.
    NASA detergents will be needed.
    New concrete placement where necessary.
    I am proposaling the total redeveloping of this region.
    This is part of Glendale, Arizona and the City of Phoenix.
    The use of Consanti Foundation and Arcosanti for Designs.
    My Geo-Metric Designs will be needed.
    International Designs that may have been left on my home computer hard drive will need to be reviewed and looked into.
    Vacent land for Agriculture.
    Consider this today.
    Marc Manspeaker
    If we could find International Investors for this please.
    Marc Manspeaker

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