X-Message-Number: 22479
From: "Gina Miller" <>
Subject: The Nanogirl News~
Date: Sun, 7 Sep 2003 16:18:59 -0700

The Nanogirl News
September 7, 2003

As promised in CRN's initial response to the recent Greenpeace report on
nanotechnology, we have prepared a detailed technical analysis and
commentary on their report. For more information, The release is available
online at http://CRNano.org/PR-Commentary.htm.
Also see the coverage at SmallTimes here:

(ETC Recent activity) Developing nations 'must wise up to nanotechnology'.
Decision makers in developing countries need more information about the
potential impact of nanotechnology on their economies and livelihoods. This
was the warning given to a conference in London yesterday that celebrated
the 30th anniversary of economist E.F. Schumacher's influential book Small
is Beautiful, which argued that inappropriate technologies were failing the
developing world. Pat Mooney, head of the Canada-based Action Group on
Erosion, Technology and Concentration (ETC) warned that emerging field of
nanotechnology - technology and engineering at the level of atoms and
molecules - could damage developing countries' export markets and
agricultural systems...But Mark Welland, a nanotechnologist from the
University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, urged against generating 'hype'
over the possible effects of nanotechnology, both positive and negative. "We
have to be realistic and not expect too much," he said.  (SciDev 9/4/03)

Drexler speaks! - Or at least writes! In this week's issue of the magazine,
I wrote a story about some of the hype over nanotechnology-particularly
estimates of how big of a market various nanoproducts might someday have.
But it's hard to talk about nanotech without mentioning the guy who invented
the term: Eric Drexler, author of the 1986 book Engines of Creation.
(Drexler and everyone else in the field credit the founding vision behind
nanotech to a 1959 talk by Caltech physicist Richard Feynman). In
researching my article, I had a fascinating E-mail chat with Drexler. Here
is some of that exchange:...
(USNews 9/4/02)

Nanoscale Iron Could Help Cleanse The Environment; Ultrafine Particles Flow
Underground And Destroy Toxic Compounds In Place. An ultrafine, "nanoscale"
powder made from iron, one of the most abundant metals on Earth, is turning
out to be a remarkably effective tool for cleaning up contaminated soil and
groundwater--a trillion-dollar problem that encompasses more than 1000
still-untreated Superfund sites in the United States, some 150,000
underground storage tank releases, and a staggering number of landfills,
abandoned mines, and industrial sites. (ScienceDaily 9/4/03)

The world's smallest buckets. In a typical chemistry lab, the smallest
containers hold just two millilitres of liquid. But despite their size,
these tiny glass tubes still contain billions of atoms. Now, there are "nano
test tubes" so small they hold just a few hundred atoms. Such containers,
with a diameter equivalent to about 20 atoms, have been manufactured by
experts at the University of Nottingham. (BBC News 9/5/03)

Peres to deliver keynote Nanotech address at U.S. conference. When Shimon
Peres appears in Washington DC this week to deliver a crucial keynote
address, it will not be in any of his current roles as Labor party leader,
Nobel peace prize laureate, nor even as a highly-respected elder statesman
for Israel. Instead, Mr. Peres will be speaking in his newest role: that of
nanotechnologist. That role was taken on last spring with a speech given
before the Knesset, during which Peres unequivocally declared Israel's need
to be among those nations leading the development and commercialization of
this fundamental new technology. (Israel21 9/7/03)

Nanomaterials. Large chemical and materials companies target small
nanotechnology firms for venture investing, collaborations, and product
innovations. Good things come in small packages. the unique properties of
nanomaterials and structures on the nanometer scale have sparked the
attention of materials developers. Incremental shifts in product performance
using these materials--for example, as fillers in plastics, as coatings on
surfaces, and as UV-protectants in cosmetics--are already occurring. The
technology holds more promise for the future, though, and is expected to
bring more disruptive changes to both products and markets. (C&E cover story

USC Receives $1.3M Nanoscience Grant. The National Science Foundation has
awarded the University of South Carolina a $1.3 million grant to research
the ethics of nanoscience, which is the study of atoms and molecules. The
four-year grant is a major step forward for the university's nanoscience
research, USC said. In June 2001, the university created its NanoCenter,
which brings together faculty from science, math and engineering to conduct
research. The university sees the efforts as gaining a better foothold in
emerging technology. (Macon 9/4/03)

In the Laboratory for Electronic and Electromagnetic Systems at
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), electrical engineer Markus Zahn
and his research team are exploring ferrofluids' potential in nanoscale
motors and biomedical devices. All the current uses of ferrofluids involve
their responding to permanent magnetic fields, fields that remain constant
and don't change over time. Zahn asked, "What happens if you put a
ferrofluid in rotating magnetic fields?" He knew that electromechanics
involved rotating machinery, and so he reasoned, "Ferrofluids could make the
world's smallest and simplest rotating machines. A simple, single magnetic
particle in a rotating magnetic field will spin." Since ferrofluid involves
countless numbers of particles, "you could induce lots of fluid motion that
could be used in nanoscale devices." -the movie on this webpage does not
appear to be related- (ScienCentral 9/4/03)

Biomolecular Motors at DARPA. Biomolecular motors are nature's nanomachines
that convert chemical energy into mechanical work with performance and scale
unparalleled by any manmade motors or machines. The principle goal of this
program is to develop an understanding of the fundamental operating
principles of biomolecular motors and exploit this knowledge to harvest,
modify, and integrate these macromolecular assemblies into useful devices
from the nano to macro scale. (DARPA)

ASU Researchers Develop Method for Testing Molecular Electronics.
Researchers at Arizona State University have developed a relatively
straightforward method for measuring the electrical resistance of single
molecules. The advance is a technical achievement in terms of its precision
and repeatability. The researchers, Nongjian Tao, an ASU electrical
engineering professor, and his student Bingqian Xu, said their method
overcomes three thorny issues in the electrical resistance measurements of a
single molecule. "What we have is a technique that guarantees one molecule
is attached between two electrodes every time; we can identify how many
molecules are present; and we can do thousands of measurements in a matter
of minutes," Tao said. (Nanotech Planet 9/2/03)

Nanotubes Surprise Again: Ideal Photon Emission. Carbon nanotubes, recently
created cylinders of tightly bonded carbon atoms, have dazzled scientists
and engineers with their seemingly endless list of special abilities--from
incredible tensile strength to revolutionizing computer chips. In today's
issue of Science, two University of Rochester researchers add another feat
to the nanotubes' list: ideal photon emission. "The emission bandwidth is as
narrow as you can get at room temperature," says Lukas Novotny, professor of
optics at Rochester and co-author of the study. Such a narrow and steady
emission can make such fields as quantum cryptography and single-molecule
sensors a practical reality.
(University of Rochester 9/5/03)

In tech world, is small really beautiful? Three decades after E. F. "Fritz"
Schumacher sparked a revolution with his book "Small Is Beautiful," calling
for smaller scale technology to end poverty, scientists are asking whether
science has become too small for society's own good. The development of
molecular level nanotechnology has replaced the giant development projects
of the 1960s but poses the question of whether small is still beautiful, a
conference in London grouping opponents and proponents of the new technology
heard on Wednesday. (CNN 9/4/03)

Advectus and Immune Announce Nano-Pharmaceutical Project Update. Advectus
Life Sciences Inc. (TSX Venture Exchange:AVX) (Other OTC:AVXSF) announced
today that it has acquired an option from Immune Network Ltd. (Pink
Sheets:IMMFF) (www.immunenetwork.com) which, if exercised, would give the
Company an exclusive worldwide interest in a new nanotechnology-based
formulation for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease based on compositions
that penetrate the "blood-brain barrier" (BBB) with existing drugs.
(PrimeZone 9/4/03)

Wet nanoparticles alter their atoms. 'Just add water' is a phrase found on
many instant-mix food packets. Now scientists at the University of
California Berkeley, US, have found that applying the technique to certain
nanoparticles can actually change their structure. The researchers
synthesized zinc sulphide (ZnS) nanoparticles with an average diameter of 3
nm in anhydrous methanol. They discovered that adding water to the
nanoparticles at room temperature reduced distortions of the surface and
interior of the particle, producing a more crystalline arrangement of atoms.
The resulting structure was close to that of sphalerite - tetrahedrally
coordinated cubic ZnS. (nanotechweb 8/28/03)

Rapid Assembly. Method forms ordered, nanosized circuit elements on multiple
length scales. A solution-based method for assembling nanowire structures
from the bottom up with spatial control on several length scales, ranging
from nanometers to centimeters, has been demonstrated by scientists at
Harvard University. Researchers there have shown that large numbers of
uniform and hierarchically ordered nanoscale circuit elements can be
prepared simultaneously using a simple and adaptable technique. (C&E

Genetic Engineering News Reports on Advances in Nanobiotechnology.
Nanobiotech companies are developing miniaturized components that could
revolutionize medical implants, ophthalmic surgery tools, cell manipulators,
and nanofluidics, reports Genetic Engineering News (GEN;
www.genengnews.com ). Some firms are manufacturing nanotech systems for
homeland security and other applications in national defense, according to
two related articles in the September issue of GEN. "Nanotech received a
huge boost with the introduction of the atomic force microscope in the late
1980s because this allowed scientists to take measurements at the atomic
level," says John Sterling, editor-in-chief of GEN.(Quote.com 9/5/03)

Gold Speck Highlights Molecules. How do you sense what is happening at the
scale of molecules, which are thousands of times smaller than microscopic
objects like red blood cells? Researchers from Ludwig-Maximilians University
in Germany have found a way to detect the very small spectral shifts that
occur when the light scattering off a single gold nanoparticle interacts
with molecules. The device makes it possible to detect molecular changes in
real-time. The method could eventually be used to make arrays of devices
that very quickly sense many types of molecules at once. (Technology Review

DNA Throttle Controls Molecular Machine. A DNA sequence that acts as a
throttle to control the rate at which an enzyme moves along the DNA has been
observed by researchers at UC Davis. By controlling the activity of the
RecBCD helicase enzyme, the "Chi" sequence can affect how efficiently genes
are repaired. RecBCD unwinds the DNA double helix so that the genetic code
can be read, copied or repaired. This unwinding is an essential first step
in most processes involving DNA. The research findings, which are published
in the September 5 issue of the journal Cell, could explain how short DNA
sequences such as Chi can interact with enzymes and affect how DNA is copied
or repaired. They could also give insight into how to control the speed of
tiny nanomachines built for various purposes. (ScienceDaily 9/5/03)

Patent Awarded for Method of Making Nanobatteries. A University of Tulsa
chemistry professor and two former students have been awarded a patent for a
method of making nanobatteries for use in tiny machines similar to the
microbe-size craft that traveled through a human's blood vessels in the 1966
science-fiction movie, "Fantastic Voyage." U.S. Patent 6,586,133 was awarded
July 1, 2003, to chemistry professor Dale Teeters and to Nina Korzhova and
Lane Fisher, who were both chemical engineering students at TU when they
worked on the process to manufacture nanoscale microscopic batteries. One
nanometer is one-billionth of a meter. The diameter of an average hair is
50,000 nanometers. (Newswise 8/20/03)

I hope you all had a lovely Labor Day.

Gina "Nanogirl" Miller
Nanotechnology Industries
Personal: http://www.nanogirl.com
Foresight Senior Associate http://www.foresight.org
Extropy member http://www.extropy.org

"Nanotechnology: Solutions for the future."

Rate This Message: http://www.cryonet.org/cgi-bin/rate.cgi?msg=22479