Nanonewbies Presentation (4 December 02008)
"Right Now, Near Future, Coming Decades"

"There's Plenty of Room at the Bottom" was a lecture given by Richard Feynman to the American Physical Society on 29 December 01959. Feynman considered the possibility of "direct manipulation of individual atoms as a more powerful form of synthetic chemistry."

Late 01970s: K. Eric Drexler got into molecular nanotechnology and in 01986 he wrote Engines of Creation: The Coming Era of Nanotechnology. Marvin Minsky stated the following about the book: "Engines of Creation begins with the insight that what we can do depends on what we can build. This leads to a careful analysis of possible ways to stack atoms." [free e-book]

01985: Richard Smalley co-discovered the "buckyball" molecule. (part III of the presentation by Beth Baumert) [Note: Smalley died in 02005 at the age of 62.]

January 02003: The Arizona Nanotechnology Cluster was formed and Matt Kim lectures about how nanotechnology is all about "control" and "magnification" (i.e. the harnessing of electrons). Note: Arizona Nanotechnology has an essay "scholarship" award. [Speaking of Matt Kim... Dr. Kim is Chairman of the Arizona Nanotechnology Cluster and his company is QuantTera. In 02006, at the Governor's Celebration of Innovation, Kim received the "Chairman's Award" for contributions to Arizona's high-tech industry.]

Also in 02003: Nanotechnology: A Gentle Introduction to the Next Big Idea was published by Mark Ratner and Daniel Ratner.

NSF predicts nano-related goods and services could be a $1 trillion market by 02012. [Note: world economies have changed since this predication was formulated.]

Right Now

4 December 02008: It remains difficult to define nanotechnology. and nanoscience. [Definition: Nanoscience is the "study of the fundamental principles of molecules and structures with at least one dimension roughly between 1 and 100 nanometers."] The "killer (nano) app" has yet to come and nobody knows what it will be; however, it might be safe to predict that it won't come from a garage.

02007-08: Semiconductor makers (e.g. Intel) are producing 45 nanometer (nm) chips. 16 nm will be the transition to nanoelectronics and 11 nm is nanoelectronics (02022?). Moore's Law: "The amount of space needed to install a transistor on a chip shrinks by roughly half every 18 months. Corollary: The cost of building a chip fabrication plant doubles with every other chip generation, or roughly every 36 months."

In 02008 we have...

2 December 02008: "[...] scientists have now created a light-weight, cigarette-sized anchor that burrows itself into the sea floor, anchoring anything from small unmanned submersible to maybe even huge oil platforms." Borrowing from Mother Nature... "The new anchor is based on one of nature's faster diggers, the oblong-shaped razor clam, Ensis directus." "Once deep enough, the RoboClam is more than 10 times stronger and an order of magnitude more energetically efficient at burrowing than other vibration-based anchors. It is several orders of magnitude more efficient than traditional anchors, and, if necessary, can even dig itself out." [NBCnews.com::'RoboClam' Anchor Holds Ships Steady]

Leading nano-universities (in no particular order)? Northwestern, Harvard, MIT, Rice, Illinois, Purdue, Cornell, UCLA, Texas, UC-Berkeley.

Near Future

Smart materials such as coatings, laminates, paints will enable more consumer nano-enhanced goods to become available.

Sports... from tennis balls to golf balls and clubs to nano-corked baseball bats to light-weight bikes to let your imagination run wild.

Energy... Founded in 02002, Palo Alto-based Nanosolar Inc. It's possible nanotechnology might play a key role in solving our world's energy problems. [Wade Adams] [Note: On 2/3/02014 the hyperlink to Nanosolar.com redirected to a porn website.]

Founded in 02002: Web.MIT.edu::Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies

Issues... nano-literacy (K-20 education; community at large), sociopolitical, environmental, ethics, and so on. Founded in 02002: Center for Responsible Nanotechnology.

Coming Decades

Quantum dots [Coming spring 02009? SCC's Dr. Kyle Rawlings lecture on quantum dots.] quantum computing; sensor technology [ASU emphasis]; germ-free clothing and everyday contacts (e.g. door knobs, hand railings); crop engineering; individualized pharmaceuticals and personalized medicine; improved medical devices and artificial organs and limbs; and nanobots (very, very, very small robots).

Quantum computing... spintronics and other quantum effects could "exponentially increase" the computing power and flexibility of future electronic devices while dramatically reducing their power consumption. Massively parallel computing is a commonly used phrase when referencing nano-based computing. As of November 02008, the fastest known supercomputer in the world can run at 1.105 petaflops.

On 20 November 02008 Stanford University "used ultrafast lasers to set a new speed record for the time it takes to rotate and confirm the spin of an individual electron, a major step in the development of quantum computers. [...] Researchers were able to confine the construction of a qubit, a quantum computer's information unit, to within a nano-sized semiconductor. The qubit in the Stanford experiment was manipulated and measured about 100 times faster than with previous techniques." [Stanford.edu::Quantum computing spins closer]

Next up... John Nagy on nanomedicine. After that... Beth Baumert on buckyballs and nanotubes.


Creator: Gerald Thurman [gthurman@gmail.com]
Created: 3 December 2008