X-Message-Number: 25992
From: "Gina Miller" <>
References: <>
Subject: The Nanogirl News~
Date: Fri, 8 Apr 2005 23:23:34 -0700

The Nanogirl News
April 1, 2005

NASA Tests Shape-Shifting Robot Pyramid For Nanotech Swarms. Like new and 
protective parents, engineers watched as the TETWalker robot successfully 
traveled across the floor at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, 
Maryland. Robots of this type will eventually be miniaturized and joined 
together to form "autonomous nanotechnology swarms" (ANTS) that alter their 
shape to flow over rocky terrain or to create useful structures like 
communications antennae and solar sails. This technology has the potential to 
directly support NASA's Vision for Space Exploration. "This prototype is the 
first step toward developing a revolutionary type of robot spacecraft with major
advantages over current designs," said Dr. Steven Curtis, Principal 
Investigator for the ANTS project, a collaboration between Goddard and NASA's 
Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va. (Sciencedaily 4/1/05) 

Scientists modify carbon nanotubes using microwaves. Researchers at New Jersey 
Institute of Technology have discovered a novel method of changing the chemical 
characteristics of carbon nanotubes by heating them in a closed vessel microwave
oven. Somenath Mitra, PhD, professor of chemistry and environmental sciences, 
and Zafar Iqbal, PhD, also a professor of chemistry and environmental sciences, 
will discuss their findings at the 229th national meeting of the American 
Chemical Society (ACS). (Physorg 3/17/05)

U.K.'s $38-Million Nanotech Bet. Brits appropriate funds to help commercialize 
nanotech, boosting the U.K.'s competitive position in the emerging market. The 
U.K. Department of Trade and Industry will make eight more grants totaling  20 
million ($37 million) to help companies and university researchers commercialize
nanotechnology research. The funds are part of a  90 million ($170 million) 
nanotech initiative announced almost two years ago by the DTI, the British 
equivalent of the U.S. Department of Commerce. Combined with millions more in 
public grants and private capital, the money announced Wednesday by science and 
innovation minister Lord Sainsbury puts the United Kingdom in a solid 
competitive position in the nascent nanotech market, which cuts across dozens of
sectors and could be worth trillions within a decade. (RedHerring 3/31/05)


New look for nanomotors. Physicists in the US have built the first 
nanoelectromechanical device that exploits the effects of surface tension. The 
"relaxation oscillator" consists of two droplets of liquid metal on a substrate 
made of carbon nanotubes and can be controlled with a small applied electric 
field. Alex Zettl and colleagues at the University of California at Berkeley and
the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory say the device could find use in 
various nanomechanical applications, including actuators and motors (B C Regan 
et al. 2005 Appl. Phys. Lett. 86 123119).
(Physicsweb 3/22/05) http://physicsweb.org/articles/news/9/3/14/1

Turn on the Nanotech High Beams by Mike Treder Executive Director, The Center 
for Responsible Nanotechnology. You're driving a car, very fast, on a poorly 
marked road, in the pitch-black darkness. There are no streetlights, there is no
moon out tonight, the only illumination you have is your car's 
headlights.you're in uncharted territory; you have no roadmap, no way to know 
for sure where you are going.but you're driving very fast, into the pitch-black 
darkness. That's the state of nanotechnology today. We're advancing rapidly into
uncharted territory. The changes this technology will bring may arrive sooner 
than we are prepared to respond effectively to them. 
(Future Brief 05) http://www.futurebrief.com/miketrederbeams001.asp

Tiny porphyrin tubes developed by Sandia may lead to new nanodevices. Sunlight 
splitting water molecules to produce hydrogen using devices too small to be seen
in a standard microscope. That's a goal of a research team from the National 
Nuclear Security Administration's Sandia National Laboratories. The research has
captured the interest of chemists around the world pursuing methods of 
producing hydrogen from water. (Sandia 3/17/05) 

Hold Still. Particles floating in a fluid jiggle constantly, an effect called 
Brownian motion, which makes them tricky to handle. A new trapping technique, 
described in the 25 March PRL, effectively cancels out the Brownian motion of a 
particle by continually nudging it with just the right fluid flow. The system 
could allow researchers to hold and manipulate smaller particles than they can 
with current techniques and could help them fabricate nanomachines or hold 
biomolecules in place while their interactions are monitored. (PRF 4/25/05) 

Paint On The Wall TV Screens? Case Chemist To Design Chemical Building Blocks 
For Such Potential Use. Imagine your television or computer screen coming from a
container as something to be applied to a flat surface like a wall-or, screens 
so flexible that they can be rolled up and put in a pocket. Those futuristic 
screens are closer to reality. John Protasiewicz, Case Western Reserve 
University professor of chemistry, plans to use funding from a special two-year,
unsolicited grant for creativity from the National Science Foundation to 
prepare new conjugated polymers that feature novel chemical building blocks and 
inorganic elements. Such special plastics have potential uses in understanding 
how these new display devices work, and could lead to improvements in plastic 
display technologies. (Sciencedaily 3/31/05) 

Nanotech Is Booming Biggest in U.S., Report Says. The science of the very small 
is getting big in the United States. Americans are investing more money, 
publishing more scientific papers and winning more patents than anyone else in 
the quickly growing field of nanotechnology, according to the first 
comprehensive federal report on the science of things only a few hundred 
millionths of an inch in size. But the nation's lead may be short-lived, the 
report warns, as Europe and Asia show evidence of gaining. (Washington Post 
3/28/05) http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A5221-2005Mar27.html

Harnessing microbes, one by one, to build a better nanoworld. Taking a new 
approach to the painstaking assembly of nanometer-sized machines, a team of 
scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison has successfully used single 
bacterial cells to make tiny bio-electronic circuits. (Eurekalert 3/17/05) 

Fate Of Nano Waste: Researchers Study How To Make Nanomaterial Industry 
Environmentally Sustainable. Research into making the emerging nanomaterial 
industry environmentally sustainable is showing promise in a preliminary 
engineering study conducted at the Georgia Institute of Technology and Rice 
University. Under the auspices of the Rice University Center for Biological and 
Environmental Nanotechnology (CBEN) funded by the National Science Foundation 
(NSF), researchers have been investigating the potential environmental impact of
nanomaterial waste. Specifically, they want to know if they can predict the 
fate and transport of nanomaterial waste in natural systems, and whether 
nanomaterials will behave the same as common environmental pollutants. In 
addition, they want to determine if nanomaterials can be treated before they 
enter the environment to minimize impact. (Sciencedaily 3/29/05)

Ceria nanoparticles catalyze reactions for cleaner-fuel future. Experiments on 
ceria nanoparticles may lead to catalytic converters that are better at cleaning
up auto exhaust, and/or to more-efficient ways of generating hydrogen. 
Researchers used bright beams of x-rays at the National Synchrotron Light Source
to study how their composition, structure, and reactivity changed in response 
to doping with zirconium in one case, and impregnation with gold in another. 
(Eurekalert 3/15/05) 

Nanogen and Pathway Diagnostics Sign License Agreement for Gene Variants Linked 
to Drug Response. Nanogen, Inc. and Pathway Diagnostics have announced that they
have entered into a nonexclusive, worldwide license agreement under which 
Nanogen will develop diagnostic products that detect genetic variations 
associated with responses to antidepressant and antipsychotic therapeutics. The 
companies have begun work on developing a molecular diagnostic product that 
could be used to select the most appropriate drug and dosage for patients 
treated for psychiatric diseases. Specific financial terms of the agreement were
not disclosed. (Azonano 3/24/05) 

Smart Nanocarriers to Combat Tumors. IBN's technology spells hope for cancer 
patients who suffer from painful side-effects of chemotherapy. A 'smart' 
nanocarrier technology developed by a team of researchers at the Institute of 
Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (IBN) is set to vastly improve the way cancer 
patients are treated. Anticancer drugs are now being administered to patients 
using methods that cause the indiscriminate killing of both diseased and healthy
cells. Such chemotherapy leads to side-effects, such as nausea, fatigue, and 
hair loss, and makes the patient weak and frail. Between 1998 and 2002, 38,447 
people in Singapore were diagnosed with some type of cancer, while 20,289 died 
of the disease. Hence, there is a crucial need for the development of more 
effective cancer therapy, which not only minimizes side-effects but also 
directly targets diseased cells. Scientists at IBN have found a way to tackle 
this problem through the use of anticancer drug delivery vehicles that transport
drugs only to where they are needed in the body. This method significantly 
reduces or even eliminates the severe side-effects typically induced by 
conventional chemotherapeutics. (AStar 3/21/05) 

Drug-Delivering Contact Lenses Revealed. Scientists at the Institute of 
Bioengineering and Nanotechnology in Singapore have developed new contact lenses
that are designed to provide a slow release of medications. The New Scientist 
reports: Contact lenses that release controlled doses of drugs to treat eye 
diseases such as glaucoma have been created by nano-engineers in Singapore. 
(4/1/05 mdeGadget) http://www.medgadget.com/archives/2005/04/drugdelivering.html

NanoMarkets Releases New White Paper on Nanotechnology and Energy Markets. 
NanoMarkets a leading industry consulting firm based here, today announced the 
release of a new white paper titled, "How Nanotechnology is Changing the Energy 
Equation" that reviews the many ways in which the energy industry is being (and 
will continue to be) impacted by nanotech.  The paper is drawn from NanoMarkets'
current research on emerging alternative energy and power markets and addresses
topics such as fossil fuels and nanocatalysts, solar power, fuel cells, wind, 
biomass and geothermal energy.  The paper can be accessed from the firm's 
website at http://www.nanomarkets.net.

(PRNewswire 3/31/05) 

New nanotech centre opens new food possibilities. A  3.5 million grant for a new
state-of-the-art nanotech research centre in the UK underlines the potential of
this brave new technology for the food industry, writes Anthony Fletcher. The 
Nottingham Micro Nano Technology (MNT) Centre will be an advanced manufacturing 
facility designed to help companies develop revolutionary new products and 
services at a scale of thousandths of a millimetre. Announced today by Lord 
Sainsbury, UK science and innovation minister, the grant will provide open 
access for companies to cutting-edge facilities designed to help bring 
nanotechnology products and services to the market.

(Foodanddrinkeurope 3/31/05) 

Human Contact Spreads PC Viruses. The federal Centers for Disease Control (CDC) 
and National Science Foundation (NSF) have issued a stunning joint announcement:
PC viruses, worms, and spyware can now be transmitted via human contact. 
Researchers at St. Paul's College in Virginia have isolated roughly 100 cases of
systems infected by human contact, the two agencies said at a press conference 
at NSF headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. The mode of transmission? Each 
system's user had physical contact with another user whose system was known to 
be infected. The level of contact was found to be as brief as a handshake. One 
researcher, Avril Hidokwon, said she documented a case where the Netsky.P virus 
spread to 12 systems via a sneeze. Scientists have long held that electronic 
viruses could not possibly spread unless there was some sort of digital (wired 
or wireless) connection between the infected PC and the victim systems (or the 
victim systems and servers). "What we did not account for," explained Hidokwon 
at the hastily organized joint press conference, "was nanotechnology." (PCmag 
4/1/05) http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1759,1781208,00.asp

Okay, if you didn't figure out this last news release, Happy April Fools Day!
All the other news stories are genuine.

Gina "Nanogirl" Miller
Nanotechnology Industries
Personal: http://www.nanogirl.com/index2.html
Foresight Senior Associate http://www.foresight.org
Nanotechnology Advisor Extropy Institute  http://www.extropy.org
3D/Animation http://www.nanogirl.com/museumfuture/index.htm
My New Project: Microscope Jewelry
"Nanotechnology: Solutions for the future."

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