[extropy-chat] The Nanogirl News~

Gina Miller nanogirl at halcyon.com
Mon Oct 31 09:56:02 UTC 2005

The Nanogirl News
October 31, 2005

Carbon nanoparticles stimulate blood clotting, researchers report. Both nanotubes and airborne particles cause platelets to clump together. Carbon nanoparticles - both those unleashed in the air by engine exhaust and the engineered structures thought to have great potential in medical applications - promote blood-clotting, scientists report in an upcoming edition of the British Journal of Pharmacology. Researchers from The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston and Ohio University examined the impact of various forms of carbon nanoparticles in a laboratory experiment on human platelets - blood's principal clotting element - and in a model of carotid artery thrombosis, or blockage, using anesthetized rats. (Innovations Report 10.24.05)

Kinematic Self-Replicating Machines Now Freely Available Online. The most comprehensive review of the field of Kinematic Self-Replicating Machines (KSRM), the title of a book co-authored by Robert A. Freitas Jr. (http://www.rfreitas.com) and Ralph C. Merkle (http://www.merkle.com), was published in hardback in late 2004.  The book is still available in print (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1570596905), but KSRM is now freely accessible online at http://www.MolecularAssembler.com/KSRM.htm. With 200 + illustrations and 3200 + literature references, KSRM describes all proposed and experimentally realized self-replicating systems that were publicly known as of 2004, ranging from nanoscale to macroscale systems.  The book extensively describes the historical development of the field.  It presents for the first time a detailed 137-dimensional map of the entire kinematic replicator design space to assist future engineering efforts.  KSRM has been
cited in two articles appearing in Nature this year (Zykov et al, Nature 435, 163 (12 May 2005) and Griffith et al, Nature 437, 636 (29 September 2005) and appears well on its way to becoming the classic reference in this field.

Scientists build world's first single-molecule car. Rice University Scientists have done it. After BMW announced the possibility of producing a car that would utilize nanotechnology practically for all functions, Rice University scientists developed the world's first single-molecule car- the car that was driven on a gold microscopic highway. It a small coupe that is devoid of any plush seating or conventional steering system. But it is a real solution for the grid locked cities. With a wheelbase of less than 5 nm, parking it is a cakewalk. (Physorg 10.20.05) http://www.physorg.com/news7438.html

Richard Errett Smalley, a gifted chemist who shared a Nobel Prize for the discovery of buckyballs, helped pioneer the field of nanotechnology and became Houston's most notable scientist, died Friday afternoon after a six-year struggle with cancer. He was 62. Smalley possessed prodigious talent both within the lab, where he cobbled individual atoms together like tinker toys, and outside academia after he won science's greatest prize. In the decade since he became a Nobel laureate, Smalley pushed Rice University and Houston to the forefront of nanotechnology research. (HoustonChronicle 10.29.05)

Engineers Build DNA 'Nanotowers' With Enzyme Tools. Duke engineers have added a new construction tool to their bio-nanofabrication toolbox. Using an enzyme called TdTase, engineers can vertically extend short DNA chains attached to nanometer-sized gold plates. This advance adds new capability to the field of bio-nanomanufacturing. "The process works like stacking Legos to make a tower and is an important step toward creating functional nanostructures out of biological materials," said Ashutosh Chilkoti, associate professor of biomedical engineering at Duke's Pratt School of Engineering. (ScienceDaily 10.14.05) http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/10/051013085140.htm

Foresight Awards Nanotech Prizes. The Foresight Nanotech Institute, a think tank and public interest organization focused on nanotechnology, awarded prizes to leaders in research, communication, government and study in the field of nanotechnology at the 13th Foresight Conference. (SmallTimes 10.27.05)

Modifications render carbon nanotubes nontoxic. Rice team mitigates toxicity of tiny cylinders with chemical changes. In follow-on work to last year's groundbreaking toxicological study on water-soluble buckyballs, researchers at Rice University's Center for Biological and Environmental Nanotechnology (CBEN) find that water-soluble carbon nanotubes are significantly less toxic to begin with. Moreover, the research finds that nanotubes, like buckyballs, can be rendered nontoxic with minor chemical modifications. The findings come from the first toxicological studies of water-soluble carbon nanotubes. The study, which is available online, will be published in an upcoming issue of the journal Toxicology Letters. The research is a continuation of CBEN's pioneering efforts to both identify and mitigate potential nanotechnology risks. (EurekAlert 10.26.05)

Nanotechnology seeks to detect food contaminants. Using microchips to detect and remove contaminants such as E. coli, anthrax or botulism from food may sound like Star Wars technology to some, but Larry Branen believes it's possible. The challenge is that researching and developing the necessary technology requires working with materials smaller than a hair. Such research even has its own name: nanotechnology. "At such small levels, there are changes in the properties of materials and how they interact. Scientifically, we must approach them in new ways," said Branen, associate director of the University of Idaho's Research Institute here. (Capital Press 10.21.05) http://www.capitalpress.info/main.asp?SectionID=67&SubSectionID=617&ArticleID=20611&TM=30977.9

Future nanotech tools made from clay. NaturalNano says that by filling Halloysite tubes with copper and then mixing the tubes into a polymer, a manufacturer could make an electrically conductive plastic. If filled with fungicides, the Halloysite particles--which consist of aluminum, oxygen, silicon and hydrogen--could be swirled into paint to make it more resistant to mildew and mold. Time-released coatings could also be added to make all-day deodorant. The tubes could even have agricultural uses. (Cnet 10.26.05) http://news.com.com/Future+nanotech+tools+made+from+clay/2100-11390_3-5914034.html

Solar cell solution: nanotechnology. One-hundred times smaller than bacteria, more efficient than plastic film, nanotubes prove promising at harvesting sun's power. If the nation decided to blanket its rooftops in solar cells - generating as much as 75 percent of all electricity produced today - it would be costly beyond belief and probably impossible: There isn't enough silicon. Scientists for 20 years have searched for an answer in very thin, plastic films, something that could be rolled out nationwide for a few cents per square foot. But they haven't proved very efficient at harvesting the power of the sun and tend to break down in air and sunlight. 
(Inside Bay Area 10.21.05) http://www.insidebayarea.com/argus/localnews/ci_3138128

$35 Million in Awards to 12 Cancer Nanotechnology Platform Partnerships. The National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), today announced funding for a major component of its $144.3 million, five-year initiative for nanotechnology in cancer research. Awards totaling $35 million over five years, with $7 million total in the first year, will establish 12 Cancer Nanotechnology Platform Partnerships. (Azonano 10.18.05) http://www.azonano.com/news.asp?newsID=1548

Physicists have observed the Jahn-Teller effect in a molecule for the first time. The effect was seen in carbon-60 molecules doped with potassium. The results could shed more light on the fundamental properties of molecular nanostructures (Science 310 468)."The Jahn-Teller effect has long been known to play an important role in the relationship between the structure of molecules and their energy levels, but this is the first time anyone has directly imaged it at the single-molecule level," says Mike Crommie of the University of California at Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, leader of the team that saw the effect. (nanotechweb 10.24.05) http://nanotechweb.org/articles/news/4/10/15?alert=1

Nanotechnology targets new food packaging products. Exciting new nanotechnology products for food packaging are in the development pipeline or, as in the case of anti-microbial films, have already entered the market, according to a report published this month by an EU-funded research team. "While far reaching visions such as nanotech food synthesizers or pathogen killing nanobots are not expected to become reality within the next decades, nanotechnology related R&D for food processing, food engineering and food packaging is in the innovation pipeline of the food industry today," the team said. (Foodnavigator 10.12.05) 

Center on Nanotechnology and Society Created at IIT. A nearly $500,000 Congressional earmark is helping fund the creation of the Center on Nanotechnology and Society at the Illinois Institute of Technology. Housed in IIT's Chicago-Kent College of Law, the Center will examine legal, social and ethical implications of nanotechnology. (nanotechwire 10.13.05)

Ford, Boeing and Northwestern Form Nanotechnology Alliance. Ford Motor Co., The Boeing Co. and Northwestern University have big plans to work together to make the future very small. The two companies and the university are in final negotiations to form a new alliance to research commercial applications of nanotechnology, the branch of engineering that deals with things smaller than 100 nm and at the molecular level. Ford and Boeing will each provide financial support for three years, and Northwestern's Robert R. McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science will provide administration of the alliance and office space for a full-time Ford employee who will serve as the industrial alliance coordinator. (Photonics 10.1205) http://www.photonics.com/todaysheadlines/XQ/ASP/navclick.true/QX/article.asp?id=5862

Engineers at Purdue University have shown how researchers might better use tiny hollow fibers called "multi-walled carbon nanotubes" to more precisely measure structures and devices for electronics and other applications. Findings will appear in the November issue of the journal Nanotechnology. Researchers attach the tubes to the ends of imaging instruments called atomic force microscopes. Because the tubes are long and slender, their shape is ideal for the emerging field of "nanometrology," which is precisely measuring structures on the scale of nanometers, or billionths of a meter. (Physorg 10.12.05) http://www.physorg.com/news7175.html

Nanotechnology Emergence Generates High Expectations, Expert Says. Independent oversight of research needed to address any health hazards. The following article appears in the October 2005 issue of the State Department's electronic journal Economic Perspectives. It is based on an op-ed article published on the Pennsylvania State University Internet site but has been revised and updated by the author for this publication. The complete issue, titled The Promise of Biotechnology, can be viewed on the USINFO Web site. (begin byliner) Wither Nanotechnology? By Akhlesh Lakhtakia Distinguished Professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics at Pennsylvania State University. Think small, dream big" is a typical slogan about the promise of nanotechnology within the scientific research community. Once relegated to pure fiction, nanotechnology is becoming increasingly linked with advances in biotechnology and information technology. With annual expenditure for nanotechnology research in the United States estimated to be in excess of $2.6 billion in 2004, the word "nano" is even finding its way into popular culture, from daily horoscopes to newspaper cartoons. (USINFO.STATE.GOV 10.27.05)

Proofreading and error-correction in nanomaterials inspired by nature. Mimicking nature, a procedure developed by researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign can find and correct defects in self-assembled nanomaterials. The new proofreading and error-removal process is based on catalytic DNA and represents a paradigm shift in nanoscale science and engineering. 
(nanotechwire 10.18.05) http://nanotechwire.com/news.asp?nid=2461

Nanomanufacturing: First Systematic Study Of Cadmium Selenide Nanostructure Growth Yields Production 'Road Map'. Researchers have taken an important step toward high-volume production of new nanometer-scale structures with the first systematic study of growth conditions that affect production of one-dimensional nanostructures from the optoelectronic material cadmium selenide (CdSe). Using the results from more than 150 different experiments in which temperature and pressure conditions were systematically varied, nanotechnology researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology created a "road map" to guide future nanomanufacturing using the vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) technique. (ScienceDaily 10.30.05) http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/10/051028140332.htm

Nano skyscrapers may precede space elevator. Liftport, a space-infrastucture company, has been among those who support construction of a space elevator, a long thin cable made of carbon nanotubes anchored to a platform or ship at sea and extending out into space. Held in place by the earth's rotation, the space elevator, with the help of robots, would ferry materials to outer space. 
(ZDnet 10.26.05) http://news.zdnet.com/2100-9596_22-5914208.html

Happy Hallows Eve.

Gina "Nanogirl" Miller
Nanotechnology Industries
Nano animations for hire:
Foresight Participating Member http://www.foresight.org
Nanotechnology Advisor Extropy Institute  http://www.extropy.org
Email: nanogirl at halcyon.com
"Nanotechnology: Solutions for the future."
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