June 21, 2014

Spacex reusable rocket video shows newly added steerable fins for hypersonic direction control

A new video from SpaceX shows the Falcon 9 Reusable (F9R) rocket during a 1,000 meter test flight at the SpaceX facility in McGregor, Texas. This was the first flight test of a set of steerable fins that provide control of the rocket during the fly-back portion of the return flight. The fins deploy approximately 1:15 into the test flight and return to their original locked position just prior to landing.

This seems like a truly smooth flight!

These types of fins are not new, but are new for human space flight. They’ve been used on missiles (especially Russian ICBMs) and bombs to aid in precision targeting, and likewise will help the F9R to land precisely on target.



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Spacex Dragon lander could land on Mars with a mission uner the NASA Discovery Program cost cap

One of Ames' long standing science interests has been to robotically drill deeply into Mars' subsurface environment (2 meters, or more) to investigate the habitability of that zone for past or extant life. Large, capable Mars landers would ease the problem of landing and operating deep robotic drills. In 2010, an Ames scientist realized that the crew-carrying version of the SpaceX Dragon capsule would possess all the subsystems necessary to perform a soft landing on Earth, and raised the question of whether it could also soft land on Mars. If it could, it might be a candidate platform for a Discovery or Mars Scout class deep drilling mission, for example.

After approximately 3 years studying the engineering problem we have concluded that a minimally modified Dragon capsule (which we call the "Red Dragon") could successfully perform an all-propulsive Entry, Descent, and Landing (EDL). We present and discuss the analysis that supports this conclusion. At the upper limits of its capability, a Red Dragon could land approximately 2 metric tons of useful payload, or approximately twice the mass that the MSL Skycrane demonstrated with a useful volume 3 or 4 times as great. This combination of features led us to speculate that it might be possible to land enough mass and volume with a Red Dragon to enable a Mars Sample Return mission in which Mars Orbit Rendezvous is avoided, and the return vehicle comes directly back to Earth. This potentially lowers the risk and cost of a sample return mission. We conclude that such an Earth-Direct sample return architecture is feasible if the Earth Return Vehicle is constructed as a small spacecraft. Larry Lemke will present and discuss the analysis that supports this conclusion.



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June 20, 2014

Diamond defect images magnetic domain walls

New technique could help in the development of sophisticated spintronics devices such as racetrack memory

June 19, 2014

Carbon nanotube companies join forces

Manufacturer OCSiAl has joined forces with the applications company Zyvex with the aim of transforming the potential of carbon nanotubes into a commercial reality.

Gold nanomatryoshkas kill cancer cells

Nanospheres surrounded by a silica-gold shell can photothermally ablate aggressive breast tumours in mice.

June 18, 2014

New Graphene Factory opens in Italy

Directa Plus inaugurates new industrial plant this month – the largest European production unit of its kind

June 15, 2014

Surely there’s more to science than money?

How can we justify spending taxpayers’ money on science when there is so much pressure to cut public spending, and so many other popular things to spend the money on, like the National Health Service? People close to the policy-making process tend to stress that if you want to persuade HM Treasury of the need to fund science, there’s only one argument they will listen to – that science spending will lead to more economic growth. Yet the economic instrumentalism of this argument grates for many people. Surely it must be possible to justify the elevated pursuit of knowledge in less mercenary, less meretricious terms? If our political economy was different, perhaps it would be possible. But in a system in which money is increasingly seen as the measure of all things, it’s difficult to see how things could be otherwise. If you don’t like this situation, it’s not science, but broader society, that you’ve got to change.

The relentless focus on the economic justification of science is relatively recent, but that doesn’t mean that what went before was a golden age. The dominant motivation for state support of science in the twentieth century wasn’t to make money, but to win wars . From the development of the chemicals industry to make explosives, from Nobel to Haber and Bosch, the early electronics, computing and control systems that were developed for gunnery control, bombing and rockets, the development of aeronautics, radar, and, of course, the development of nuclear weapons, there was barely a branch of science that couldn’t be brought to bear on the military technologies of the twentieth century’s two world wars and the following cold war. Even a subject as apparently pure and basic as radio astronomy has had closer links with the defence and security establishment than its proponents might like to admit. Established after the second world war on a tide of war surplus electronics, it was only the timely appearance of Sputnik that saved Sir Bernard Lovell from disgrace after his overspending on his Jodrell Bank radio telescope. And surely academic radio astronomers occasionally wondered what their former students were doing in their jobs in Cheltenham? Eavesdropping on satellite phone calls doesn’t have the intellectual cachet of studying distant radio galaxies, but the technologies are rather similar [1].

The apparent freedom given to a few academic scientists in the post-second world war “golden age” was recompense for the perception that scientists had won the last war, and downpayment on their efforts to win the next one. It was a freedom for a few that coexisted with a much larger scale, and very explicitly directed, applied science effort in the national laboratories and defense establishments of the cold war warfare states [2]. Nor was there much of a barrier between the pure world of academic science and the technical end of the military-industrial complex – on the contrary, there was regular traffic between the two worlds. The academic scientists benefitted from generous military funding of basic research, defense establishments gave their students jobs, and many of them could derive some personal benefit from summer-time consulting [3]. Robert Wilson, director of Fermilab, legendarily replied to a Senator asking what his lab contributed to the defense of America, “Nothing, but it makes it worth defending”. This is an attractive answer to many scientists, but it was hugely disingenuous; without the cold war there would have been no Fermilab.

But can’t we hang on to his idea that science is an ornament to our culture, in the same way as high art is? Shouldn’t we support science with no thought of material benefit, for exactly the same reason as we support music and opera? There are two problems with this view. The first one is the very mundane and practical one, that the level of state support than the arts receive is about an order of magnitude less than the science budget (the Arts Council gets £450 million, the science budget is £5.8 billion), but science’s audiences are rather smaller. The second problem is more fundamental. How would it be decided what sort of science is funded? The analogy with arts is not encouraging; many would argue that the art that enjoys material success has served largely as a positional good that marks out superior class status. The disproportionate support received by the kinds of art favoured by prosperous metropolitans suggests that, even with state support, this remains true. William Blake created sublime and profound poetry and images, but his radical and difficult messages didn’t sell and he died poor. Meanwhile his contemporary Joshua Reynolds painted distinguished military men and well-dressed society wives; he received a knighthood and was buried in St Paul’s Cathedral. I don’t think science would necessarily be improved by being beholden to rich patrons; as Blake said following an unhappy experience with one such: “corporeal friends are spiritual enemies”.

Some people suggest that we should regard great scientific facilities like CERN as the cathedrals of the modern age. The spiritual allusion isn’t entirely misplaced; the early modern natural philosophy from which science emerged began as an explicitly religious enterprise, steeped in the Christian neo-Platonism of the time. The Christian part is much less prominent today than it was a couple of centuries ago, but the neo-Platonism still runs very deep [4]. Many scientists find strong personal motivation in the majesty of a world-view that makes the universe comprehensible on the basis of universal mathematical principles. This works very well as driving force for the practitioners of science, but it means much less to the public at large. It’s a philosophy that appeals strongly to the celebrants but doesn’t leave a lot for the congregation to do.

Perhaps it’s more promising to go back to the other ingredient that went into the development of the modern scientific project – the new emphasis that its early theorist Francis Bacon put on practical application, in contrast to the goals of wisdom and personal fulfilment that were the traditional ends of natural philosophy. For Bacon, the purpose of the new experimental philosophy was “an improvement in man’s estate and an enlargement of his power over nature”. To this end new connections were made between natural philosophy and the hitherto lower status realms of craft knowledge, technology, and the practical mathematics of mechanics and astronomy. I don’t think anyone can doubt that the scientific project delivered on Bacon’s goal, and (aside from the gendered language) many, including me, would endorse it today. Science has unquestionably delivered enormous benefits through modern medicine, revolutions in agriculture and the possibility of material plenty.

But if I am focusing on the practical applications of science as its justification, am I not just returning to a justification by economic benefit? No, it’s only because of the supremacy of economic values in today’s world that we think in this way. Policy-makers find it hard to think of other ways than money of conceptualising and measuring benefit. If a spin-out company gets a new drug through clinical trials, we measure its success by the price the company is sold or floated for, rather than for the benefit it might bring to sufferers of the disease in question. Environmental scientists are forced into dubious quantifications of the value of “ecosystem services”. And climate science, whose long-term benefits may be incalculably large, encounters attacks on its very legitimacy from those who fear its implications that we may need to incur some short-term economic costs. We need to distinguish very clearly between the proposition that we should do science because it can bring benefits to humanity, and the proposition that such benefits can only be meaningfully measured in terms of a net present value; endorsing the former doesn’t mean you have to accept the latter.

I don’t think it’s unfair to say that some scientists have been naive about why academic science has in the past been supported [5]; not all scientists are able clearly to distinguish between their own motivations for doing science, and the motivations of those that fund it. I can’t help wondering whether some scientists have failed to come to terms with the end of the cold war. The cold war was an excellent time to be a scientist, on both sides of the Iron Curtain. But I’m glad the cold war has ended. The cost to the environment, the abuse of human rights, the large-scale misapplication of the fruits of science, and the ever-present threat of nuclear catastrophe were too high a price to pay for the intellectual freedom and high status of a few elite scientists. The neo-liberal economic orthodoxy of the world we now live in, despite the rhetorical enthusiasm for innovation and technology, is a much more difficult environment for science. The benefits of science are too long-term, too unpredictable, and too difficult to appropriate by any individual agent to fit comfortably in a world of short-term utility maximisation. My worry is that we are already seeing a slowing down of innovation in some of the areas where it matters most, as a result of the ascendancy of free-market fundamentalism. It’s natural and right for scientists to react badly to an environment in which the demands for their research to produce economic returns on ever-shorter timescales. But I also think it is right for society to expect science to contribute to the solutions we need for society’s big problems. We need to develop a political economy that will allow science to fulfil its potential.

1. See David Edgerton’s Warfare State – – for the UK, and for the USA, Audra Wolfe’s Competing with the Soviets: science, technology and the state in cold war America
2. Cheltenham is the base of GCHQ, the UK’s signals intelligence organisation – the counterpart, and close collaborator, of the USA’s National Security Agency.
3. See, for example, the history of the JASON group, which brought together leading fundamental scientists, like Murray Gell-Mann, Leon Lederman, and Steven Weinberg, to solve classified problems for the US military.
4. For the natural philosophical origins of modern science, see Stephen Gaukroger’s The Emergence of a Scientific Culture.
5. For a recent example, one might appreciate the irony of a leader of a recent campaign against the focus on “impact” in UK science policy having a job title which includes the name of the sponsoring pharmaceutical company.

June 13, 2014

Air-stable CQDs break efficiency record

New class of quantum colloidal dot could help make better solar cells

June 12, 2014

Nanotwins make harder diamond

Nanostructured material made from onion-like carbon precursors is also much more stable at higher temperatures

Doped defects tune graphene for electronics

Nitrogen doping at the grain boundaries in graphene can not only transform its electronic state from metallic to semiconducting, but can also allow the size of its energy bandgap to be controlled.

June 11, 2014

Insulating or metallic? Bilayer graphene patches can be both

New study could help in the development of RF transistors from the carbon sheet and perhaps even allow it to be employed as a metrological resistance standard

June 10, 2014

Novel properties for nanotechnology rebar-graphene reinforced with carbon nanotubes

Nanotubes with added carbon side chains are spin coated onto a substrate and heated to form rebar graphene in a process invented at Rice University. The rebars add strength and electrical connectivity to the transparent, flexible sheet that could replace more expensive materials in displays and solar cells. (Credit: Tour Group/Rice University)

In keeping with the theme of February’s “The Integration Conference”, integration of two different types of nanostructure promises greatly improved functional devices. In research described at KurzweilAI.net from 2008 Feynman Prize winner James Tour’s group, a composite of carbon nanotubes and graphene has improved mechanical and electronic properties, and may provide an inexpensive substitute for a rare and expensive material. From a Rice University news release written by Mike Williams “Rebar technique strengthens case for graphene“:

Carbon nanotubes are reinforcing bars that make two-dimensional graphene much easier to handle in a new hybrid material grown by researchers at Rice University.

The Rice lab of chemist James Tour set nanotubes into graphene in a way that not only mimics how steel rebar is used in concrete but also preserves and even improves the electrical and mechanical qualities of both.

The technique should make large, flexible, conductive and transparent sheets of graphene much easier to manipulate, which should be of interest to electronics manufacturers, Tour said. He suggested the new hybrid could, upon stacking in a few layers, be a cost-effective replacement for expensive indium tin oxide (ITO) now used in displays and solar cells.

The research appears this month in the American Chemical Society journal ACS Nano [abstract].

Graphene, a single-layer matrix of carbon atoms, may be one of the strongest materials on the planet, but it can be a challenge to lift the tiny sheets from the catalyst substrate on which they’re grown, generally by chemical vapor deposition (CVD), Tour said.

“Normally you grow graphene on a metal, but you can’t just dissolve away the metal,” Tour said. “You put a polymer on top of the graphene to reinforce it, and then dissolve the metal.

“Then you have polymer stuck to the graphene. When you dissolve the polymer, you’re left with residues, trace impurities that limit graphene’s effectiveness for high-speed electronics and biological devices. By taking away the polymer support step, we greatly expand the potential for this material.”

To create what they call rebar graphene, the researchers simply spin-coat and then heat and cool functionalized single- or multiwalled carbon nanotubes on copper foils, using the nanotubes themselves as the carbon source. When heated, the functional carbon groups decompose and form graphene, while the nanotubes partially split and form covalent junctions with the new graphene layer.

“The nanotubes actually become one with the material in certain places,” Tour said. “It’s a true hybrid with in-plane nanotubes covalently bonded to graphene.”

The interconnected, embedded nanotubes strengthen the graphene, Tour said. “We can see in our images how well the nanotubes bear the load. When we stretch the material, the tubes get thinner,” he said. Because the electron microscope images let them determine the nanotubes’ chirality — the angles of the hexagons that make up the tube — the researchers were able to calculate the tubes’ diameters and know precisely how much thinner they get under tension.

The networked nanotubes also make the material a better conductor than standard CVD-grown graphene, Tour said. Graphene as grown is never a perfect matrix of hexagons; instead, it consists of crystals that grow separately and connect at grain boundaries that disrupt the flow of electrons. The nanotubes in rebar graphene effectively bridge those boundaries.

“The big thing for industry is to see if they can get graphene to substitute for ITO for transparent displays,” Tour said. “But ITO is rigid, and it breaks when you drop your smartphone, for example. Graphene and nanotubes, on the other hand, would afford flexible displays. We showed in our tests that rebar graphene has better conductivity than normal graphene at the same transparency, and with layering, it could be ITO-competitive.”

As the incremental nanotechnology of nanomaterials and simple nanodevices evolves toward, or is replaced by, atomically precise manufacturing, we can expect to see more instances of rare, expensive materials being replaced by functionally similar materials manufactured with atomic precision from common elements (as argued by Eric Drexler in Radical Abundance).
—James Lewis, PhD

June 09, 2014

Hopping to open up a bandgap in phosphorene

New tight-binding model sheds more light on 2D material’s unusual behaviour

June 06, 2014

Electric field controls nuclear spin

New result could be important for making real-world quantum computers

June 05, 2014

DNA nanotechnology replicates enzyme cascade

Photo by: Jason Drees, Biodesign Institute at ASU

Five years ago this blog pointed to progress in using DNA scaffolding to organize functional modules for use in the modular molecular composite nanosystems (MMCNs) route to atomically precise productive nanosystems. In another advance along this pathway to atomically precise manufacturing, researchers have arranged two enzymes on a DNA scaffold to replicate the organization of an enzyme cascade inside a cell, passing a substrate molecule from one enzyme to the next. From Arizona State University “DNA nanotechnology opens future to biomedical applications with 3-D artificial enzyme“:

Using molecules of DNA like an architectural scaffold, Arizona State University scientists, in collaboration with colleagues at the University of Michigan, have developed a 3-D artificial enzyme cascade that mimics an important biochemical pathway that could prove important for future biomedical and energy applications.

The findings were published in the journal Nature Nanotechnology [abstract]. Led by ASU professor Hao Yan, the research team included ASU Biodesign Institute researchers Jinglin Fu, Yuhe Yang, Minghui Liu, Professor Yan Liu and professor Neal Woodbury, along with colleagues professor Nils Walter and postdoctoral fellow Alexander Johnson-Buck at the University of Michigan.

Researchers in the field of DNA nanotechnology, taking advantage of the binding properties of the chemical building blocks of DNA, twist and self-assemble DNA into ever-more imaginative 2- and 3-dimensional structures for medical, electronic and energy applications.

In the latest breakthrough, the research team took up the challenge of mimicking enzymes outside the friendly confines of the cell. …

“We look to Nature for inspiration to build man-made molecular systems that mimic the sophisticated nanoscale machineries developed in living biological systems, and we rationally design molecular nanoscaffolds to achieve biomimicry at the molecular level,” Yan said, who holds the Milton Glick Chair in the ASU Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and directs the Center for Molecular Design and Biomimicry at the Biodesign Institute.

With enzymes, all moving parts must be tightly controlled and coordinated, otherwise the reaction will not work. The moving parts, which include molecules such as substrates and cofactors, all fit into a complex enzyme pocket just like a baseball into a glove. Once all the chemical parts have found their place in the pocket, the energetics that control the reaction become favorable, and swiftly make chemistry happen. Each enzyme releases its product, like a baton handed off in a relay race, to another enzyme to carry out the next step in a biochemical pathway in the human body.

For the new study, the researchers chose a pair of universal enzymes, glucose-6 phosphate dehydrogenase (G6pDH) and malate dehydrogenase (MDH), that are important for biosynthesis — making the amino acids, fats and nucleic acids essential for all life. For example, defects found in the pathway cause anemia in humans. “Dehydrogenase enzymes are particularly important since they supply most of the energy of a cell,” said Walter. “Work with these enzymes could lead to future applications in green energy production, such as fuel cells using biomaterials for fuel.”

In the pathway, G6pDH uses the glucose sugar substrate and a cofactor called NAD to strip hydrogen atoms from glucose and transfer to the next enzyme, MDH, to go on and make malic acid and generate NADH in the process, which is used as a key cofactor for biosynthesis.

Remaking this enzyme pair in the test tube and having it work outside the cell is a big challenge for DNA nanotechnology.

To meet the challenge, they first made a DNA scaffold that looks like several paper towel rolls glued together. Using a computer program, they were able to customize the chemical building blocks of the DNA sequence so that the scaffold would self-assemble. Next, the two enzymes were attached to the ends of the DNA tubes.

In the middle of the DNA scaffold, they affixed a single strand of DNA, with the NAD+ tethered to the end like a ball and string. Yan refers to this as a swinging arm, which is long, flexible and dexterous enough to rock back and forth between the enzymes.

Once the system was made in a test tube by heating up and cooling the DNA, which leads to self-assembly, the enzyme parts were added in. They confirmed the structure using a high-powered microscope, called an AFM, which can see down to the nanoscale, 1,000 times smaller than the width of a human hair.

Like architects, the scientists first built a full-scale model so they could test and measure the spatial geometry and structures, including in their setup a tiny fluorescent dye attached to the swinging arm. If the reaction takes place, they can measure a red beacon signal that the dye gives off — but in this case, unlike a traffic signal, a red light means the reaction works.

Next, they tried the enzyme system and found that it worked just the same as a cellular enzyme cascade. They also measured the effect when varying the distance between the swinging arm and the enzymes. They found there was a sweet spot, at 7 nanometers, where the arm angle was parallel to the enzyme pair.

With a single swinging arm in the test tube system working just like the cellular enzymes, they decided to add arms, testing the limits of the system with up to four added arms. They were able to show that as each arm was added, the G6pDH could keep up to make even more product, while the MDH had maxed out after only two swinging arms. “Lining enzymes up along a designed assembly line like Henry Ford did for auto parts is particularly satisfying for someone living near the motor city Detroit,” said Walter.

The work also opens a bright future where biochemical pathways can be replicated outside the cell to develop biomedical applications such as detection methods for diagnostic platforms.

“An even loftier and more valuable goal is to engineer highly programmed cascading enzyme pathways on DNA nanostructure platforms with control of input and output sequences. Achieving this goal would not only allow researchers to mimic the elegant enzyme cascades found in nature and attempt to understand their underlying mechanisms of action, but would facilitate the construction of artificial cascades that do not exist in nature,” said Yan.

The novel component here appears to be the use of the flexible DNA arm to facilitate hydride transfer between two coupled enzymes. With this addition to the DNA nanotechnologist’s tool kit, perhaps it is time to assess how large a tool catalog would be desirable for a reasonably general molecular manufacturing repertoire, and how close are we to achieving it?
—James Lewis, PhD

May 31, 2014

Spin-outs and venture capital won’t fill the pharma R&D gap

Now that Pfizer has, for the moment, been rebuffed in its attempt to take over AstraZeneca, it’s worth reflecting on the broader issues this story raised about the pharmaceutical industry in particular and technological innovation more generally. The political attention focused on the question of industrial R&D capacity was very welcome; this was the subject of my last post – Why R&D matters. Less has been said about the broader problems of innovation in the pharmaceutical industry, which I discussed in an earlier post – Decelerating change in the pharmaceutical industry. One of the responses I had to my last post argued that we shouldn’t worry about declining R&D in the pharmaceutical industry, because that represented an old model of innovation that was being rapidly superseded. In the new world, nimble start-ups, funded by far-seeing venture capitalists, are able to translate the latest results from academic life sciences into new clinical treatments in a much more cost-effective way than the old industry behemoths. It’s an appealing prospect that fits in with much currently fashionable thinking about innovation, and one can certainly find a few stories about companies founded that way that have brought useful treatments to market. The trouble is, though, if we look at the big picture, there is no evidence at all that this new approach is working.

A recent article by Matthew Herper in Forbes – The Cost Of Creating A New Drug Now $5 Billion, Pushing Big Pharma To Change – sets out pharma’s problems very starkly. The exponentially increasing costs of developing new medicines now means that, on Herper’s analysis, the cost to big pharma of developing a single new medicine is now approaching $5 billion. This reflects the fact that 95% of drug candidates don’t make it to market, because they fail, in clinical trials, to demonstrate that they are both safe and effective; the costs of these failures have to be borne from the revenues of the 5% that are successful. With the cost of drug development this high, some are wondering whether the returns can ever justify the outlays. It’s arguable that, purely from the point of view of maximising shareholder value, it’s rational to to stop R&D altogether and squeeze the returns on existing products for as long as possible. This is precisely the approach taken by Michael Pearson, CEO of Valeant Pharmaceuticals, currently involved in a hostile take-over bid for Allergan.

But if big pharma did stop doing R&D, where would the new products come from? The fashionable answer is that the risky business of discovering new drugs would be handed over to spin-outs and start-ups backed by venture capital. That this is implausible as a global solution is shown just by looking at the scale of activity. To calibrate this, note that Herper’s analysis estimates that on average a company that produces a single new drug takes $350 million to do it. The reason this is much less than the cost per drug to big pharma is because it doesn’t include the costs of failure; if (as usually happens) the new drug that the company is based around fails to make it to market the investors just lose their money. But the total amount of venture capital money that went into the biotech and pharma sectors in 2012 was, according to the British Venture Capital Assocation, just £46 million. For comparison, the total R&D spend in the pharmaceutical industry in 2012 was £4.2 billion, according to the ONS. The 15% decrease in pharma R&D spend between 2011 and 2012 – £727 million – by itself was 15 times more than the VC money that went in.

There is no mystery as to why so little money goes in to support early stage pharma and biotech companies – not only are the investments very risky, but on average the returns are poor. According to the BVCA Performance Measurement Survey, Venture Capital funds in the UK generated, between 1996 and 2008, an internal rate of return of just 0.4% a year. The report doesn’t break down the performance between different sectors, but taking into account all private equity and VC funds, the return on technology investments was 1.1% compared to that from non-technology investments of 14.9%. There’s no reason to believe that pharma and biotech investments were better performing than the average VC or technology investment – on the contrary, it seems much more likely that those averages were pulled up by internet and software investments and that the picture for pharma and biotech is even worse than these figures suggest.

So if the returns on early-stage investments in the pharma and biotech sectors are so poor, why do they attract any private sector money at all? Another interesting figure in the BVCA statistics is that the total investment in VC and private equity included £424 million from UK government agencies – this sum actually exceeds the total sum invested in the technology sector as a whole both at the VC and expansion stage (this was £420 million). In addition to these investments, such companies increasingly rely for their operating cash on grants from government agencies like the TSB and MRC – through schemes like the £180 million Biomedical Catalyst Fund – and the EU. The reality, then, is that the early stage, VC supported spin-out companies are largely the result of state action, rather being the products of capitalism in the raw. This is not necessarily a bad thing, given the need for the innovation that they promise, but we should be clear-eyed about what is going on, and ask whether the scale and organisation is right for this kind of state investment.

If I take a personal view, I certainly wouldn’t be demanding that my pension money was put into early stage pharma and biotech companies – I’d like some money to live on in my old age, and from an investment point of view it’s far from clear that pharma and biotech are good bets. But also, when I’m old, I’d like medicine to have advanced – I’d like there to be some new antibiotics to replace the ones that pathogenic bacteria will have become resistant to, and maybe even some useful therapies for the dementias that are growing so much more prevalent in our ageing populations. And there is the dilemma that we need to face – in pharmaceuticals, and perhaps in other areas too, our version of finance capitalism seems to be structurally incapable of delivering the innovation we need.

April 01, 2014

ReRAM Patent Landscape

ReRAM (Resistance RAM) is a type of memory which may one day replace Flash as the common form of non-volatile storage for electronic devices. I recently updated a file I keep on US patents related to ReRAM and some related non-volatile memory materials and posted the results on SlideShare available at this link.

A full copy of the patent data used to create this presentation can be obtained by sending an e-mail to tinytechip@gmail.com with the subject "Resistance switching materials and device patent landscape".

May 14, 2013

Researchers develop synthetic HDL cholesterol nanoparticles

Atherosclerosis, a buildup of cellular plaque in the arteries, remains one of the leading causes of death globally. While high-density lipoprotein, or HDL, the so-called good cholesterol, is transferred to the liver for processing, low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, builds up in the arteries in the form of plaque.

Early detection of cellular components in the plaque that rupture and block arteries have long been held as potentially effective detection for heart diseases and their link to atherosclerosis.


A new study by University of Georgia researchers in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences department of chemistry, published online May 13 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, documents a : Synthetic  nanoparticles. A completely biodegradable  of the so-called , the nanoparticles represent a potential new detection and therapy regimen for atherosclerosis.


Source: http://phys.org/news/2013-05-synthetic-hdl-cholesterol-nanoparticles.html

May 07, 2013

3D Systems trending up

3D Systems Corporation (DDD) trend seems to continue up on the short and long term.
The 3d Printer hype still looks quite strong.

January 03, 2013

The brave new world of science communication

In a new Perspectives piece in Science, my colleague +Dominique Brossard and I discuss the challenges and opportunities created by the constantly changing information environment modern science is currently facing.  Most importantly, we highlight examples of new empirical social science research that indicates that the interplay between audiences, science (journalism), and new modes of communication produces far more complex outcomes than many commentators (and scientists) initially assumed.

It would be naive to assume that communicating science online is about citizens consuming the equivalent of TV or newspapers through online channels.  Instead, we’re moving into a new world of audiences interacting with each other and with journalists to repurpose and reinterpret the content they encounter.  As a result, we’re no longer dealing with “mass” media in their traditional sense, but with messages that are socially contextualized through Facebook “likes,” retweets and reader comments (1).  Long story short, online communication about science produces a complex interplay of interpersonal exchanges, science journalism, and audience reactions that social scientists are only beginning to understand.

And the solution is not just about shifting more science content online.  We’re moving into an online environment that rapidly morphs blogs, microblogs, social media, web sites of traditional news outlets, video channels and a host of other tools of online communication into a constant stream of information and conversation.   Science needs to have an authoritative, fact-based voice across all of these channels, regardless of how dynamic they might be.  And it needs to enter the conversation with a clear understanding of how to best engage all members of society in a meaningful discussion about an increasingly complex set of scientific issues.

Unfortunately, the decline of traditional science journalism has to be a concern, in this context.  And news organizations are in the middle of sorting our new business models that allow them to create enough revenue online to produce high-quality science journalism.  NBC's Alan Boyle's Cosmic Log is just one successful example. But complementing science journalism with science information that is produced "by citizens for citizens" is not necessarily a bad thing.  Traditional news outlets, such as the New York Times or Nova Science, have never been targeting or able to reach general cross-section of the population with their science content.  As a result, recent research has shown widening gaps between the least- and most-educated strata of the population when exposed to similar types of traditional science content (2).  And some of the new forms of online communication about science that involve interactions among citizens, journalists and sometimes even scientists have in fact been shown to narrow knowledge gaps across different strata of society (2,3).

Similarly, the recent hype surrounding social media may be less than productive.  In fact, social media often produce “echo chambers,” as some researchers have called them (1).  As a result, Facebook groups or pages focused on science often preach to the already converted, i.e., those who like science in the first place.  And those folks tend to befriend others who are like them.  In other words, people tend to talk to people who think like them in social media environments, and social media don’t necessarily help communicators connect with many new audiences.  But again, solid social science research is only beginning to emerge, and it suggests that the processes surrounding science communication in social media environments is much more multifaceted than most of us would intuitively assume.

One thing is for certain: Traditional media will not remain traditional media for long.  They will be forced to reinvent themselves in this brave new world of communication.  We’re already seeing this for newspapers and TV stations who offer much of their content across platforms and with more and more audience involvement. We will also see new and creative ways of monetizing online content and therefore maintaining high quality (science) journalism.  But those models will only emerge if we rely on the insights from social science in fields, such as communication research, to help us understand how audiences use and interact with the information they find online.

Most commentators agree that media are in the midst of an intense period of change, but also argue that we should wait to see where the dust settles. Unfortunately, science journalism will not have that luxury.  We live in a (media) world where the dust is not going to settle for a long time.  What we really do need is a systematic collaboration between the sciences and social sciences to figure out how to use these new communication tools for a productive dialogue about science without some of the unintended consequences that our Perspectives piece is only beginning to hint at.


References:

(1)  Scheufele, D. A., & Nisbet, M. C. (2012). Online news and the demise of political debate. In C. T. Salmon (Ed.), Communication Yearbook (Vol. 36, pp. 45-53). Newbury Park, CA: Sage.) 

(2)  Cacciatore, M. A., Scheufele, D. A., & Corley, E. A. (forthcoming). Another (methodological) look at knowledge gaps and the Internet’s potential for closing them. Public Understanding of Science. doi: 10.1177/0963662512447606

(3)  Corley, E. A., & Scheufele, D. A. (2010). Outreach gone wrong? When we talk nano to the public, we are leaving behind key audiences. The Scientist, 24(1), 22. 



Additional Resources:

Slideshare presentation on the topic I gave last month at the 5. Forum Wissenschaftskommunikation in Dresden, Germany.









A Science and (New) Media primer (courtesy of UW-Madison's scimep lab; unless linked directly, reprints available upon request):

Anderson, A. A.; Brossard, D.; Scheufele, D. A. (forthcoming). Nanoparticle-related deaths: Science news and the issue attention cycle in print and online media. Politics and the Life Sciences.

Anderson, A. A., Brossard, D., Xenos, M., A.; Scheufele, D. A.; Ladwig, P. (forthcoming). Crude comments and concern: Online incivility's effect on risk perceptions of emerging technologies. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication.

Cacciatore, M. A., Anderson, A. A., Choi, D.-H., Brossard, D., Scheufele, D. A., Liang, X., Ladwig, P., Xenos, M., & Dudo, A. (2012). Coverage of emerging technologies: A comparison between print and online media. New Media & Society, 14(6), 1039-1059. doi: 10.1177/1461444812439061

Cacciatore, M. A., Scheufele, D. A., & Corley, E. A. (forthcoming). Another (methodological) look at knowledge gaps and the Internet’s potential for closing them. Public Understanding of Science.

Li, N., Anderson, A. A., Brossard, D., Scheufele, D. A., (forthcoming). Channeling science information seekers' attention? A content analysis of top-ranked vs. lower-ranked sites in Google. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication.

Liang, X., Anderson, A. A., Scheufele, D. A., Brossard, D., Xenos, M. A. (2012). Information snapshots: What Google searches really tell us about emerging technologies. Nano Today, 7, 72-75. doi: 10.1016/j.nantod.2012.01.001

Runge, K. K., Yeo, S. K., Cacciatore, M., Scheufele, D. A., Brossard, D., Xenos, M., Anderson, A. A., Choi, D. H., Kim, J., Li, N., Liang, X., Stubbings, M., & Su, L. Y. F. (forthcoming). Tweeting nano: How public discourses about nanotechnology develop in social media environments. Journal of Nanoparticle Research.

Xenos, M. A., Becker, A. B., Anderson, A. A., Brossard, D., Scheufele, D. A. (2011). Stimulating upstream engagement: An experimental study of nanotechnology information seeking. Social Science Quarterly, 92(5), 1191-1214. doi: 10.1111/j.1540-6237.2011.00814.x

December 31, 2012

Top Ten Nanotechnology Patents of 2012

The following is a list of the most interesting nanotechnology patents this past year (in my opinion):

#10 - US 8093786 - Nanoscale piezoelectrics (Stevens Institute of Technology)

This patent teaches manufacturing piezoelectric nanofibers enabling the fabrication of nanoscale sensors and actuators.

#9 - US 8289352 - Erasable printing with nanoparticles (HJ Laboratories)

This patent teaches using nanomagnetic particles as an erasible ink in a printer.

#8 - US 8121162 - Nanocrystal laser (MIT)

This patent has priority going back to 2001 and includes some basic claims for nanocrystal coatings of diffraction gratings used for optical feedback in lasers.

#7 - US 8323976 - Genetic alteration using nanodiamonds (International Technology Center)

This patent includes basic claims reciting nanodiamonds as delivery particles used in ballistic DNA injection.

#6 - US 8113437 - "Memristor" RFID (Hynix SK)

Hynix SK is HP's manufacturing partner for a form of nanoscale ReRAM which HP (incorrectly) equates to the memristor theorized by Leon Chua in the 1970's. This is the first patent from Hynix mentioning memristors and may be indicative of the first commercial application.

#5 - US 8278757 - Printed graphene electronics (Vorbeck Materials Corp./Princeton University)

This patent incudes some basic claims for using graphene as an electrically conductive ink for printed electronics.

#4 - US 8182807 - Stroke treatment using nanoparticles (University of Nebraska)

Nanoparticles have a specific advantage in delivering drugs across the blood-brain barrier and this patent (priority 2004) seems to include some basic claims important to this application.

#3 - US 8147791 - Graphene oxide reduction (Northrop Grumman Systems)

This patent includes basic claims to graphene production via the reduction of graphene oxide.

#2 - US 8323607 - High tensile strength CNT wire (Hon Hai Precision)

Carbon nanotubes have been measured to have the highest tensile strength of any material tested but in macroscopic and composite structures the collective tensile strength is greatly reduced. This patent includes some basic claims for carbon nanotube structures with a tensile strength which, while less than the highest measured value of individual nanotubes, is compatible with larger structures (i.e. wires, films) and is greater than that of steel.

#1 - US 8101149 - "Purified cage molecules consisting of carbon atoms" (Mitsubishi)

This could be the most important submarine patent relevant to nanotechnology. The priority goes back to 1990 and the patent may have a life extending to 2029 (assuming 17 years from issuance). The quote above recites in full the first claim indicating the importance of this patent to purified carbon nanomaterials.

November 06, 2012

October 31, 2012

August 29, 2012

The Polarization Paradox: Why Hyperpartisanship Strengthens Conservatism and Undermines Liberalism

In a new essay in Breakthrough Journal +Matthew Nisbet and I examine the spiral of polarization that has reshaped politics in recent election cycles, and make an argument for a big “D” Democratic effort to overcome polarization, given the long-term problems that widening ideological rifts create for them.  

“As liberals, we tell a one-sided story about the complex causes of America's political paralysis. We blame the conservative movement, Fox News, libertarian billionaires, and the "do nothing" Republicans in Congress. Much of this story is true. … But there is plenty of blame to go around. Over the past decade, liberals have become more like conservatives, adopting a win-at-all-costs commitment to policy debates and elections. … 
The strategy has been dangerously misguided. Extreme polarization has served conservatives very well, driving moderate leaders from politics, promoting feelings of cynicism, inefficacy, and distrust among the public, and forcing Democrats to spend huge sums of money on canvassing, texting, social media, and celebrity appeals in order to turn out moderates, young people, and minorities on election day. Less clear is how America's escalating ideological arms race will conceivably serve liberals. Instead of going to war against the Right, liberals will better serve their social and political objectives by waging a war on polarization.”

Read the full article from Breakthrough Journal here.

July 07, 2012

Euro in Poland and Ukraine



European soccer champioship in Poland and Ukraine should attract thousands of visitors interested in Ukrainian architecture and places to see.

October 17, 2011

Nano-channels for molecule delivery - and construction?

Molecules can be delivered through a tiny channel templated by one strand of DNA.

Here's the article.

The developers are using this to deliver precise amounts of chemicals through the membrane of individual cells. This is highly cool, with all sorts of research implications. And eventually, perhaps therapeutic implications - they're talking about scaling it up to process 100,000 cells at a time.

So I got to wondering: If someone loaded up these reservoirs with two kinds of molecules, that would stick to each other but not to themselves, could this be used as an ink-jet printer at the nanoscale?

For starters, use one kind of molecule that will stick to a surface. Squirt it on and see if it worked. Then, scan the tip while you squirt.

Once you start using multiple kinds of molecules, you can perhaps build 3D structures. And with a patterned surface, it might be possible to get atomic precision.

With a million addressible reservoirs, and 10 ms per 1-nm voxel, it would be possible to build the volume of a human cell in a few hours.

Hat tip to Next Big Future.

Chris Phoenix

CRN Home Page

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March 14, 2011

Interesting Facts About Nano Technology

I am contanly looking for interesting facts and things related to nano technology. Even though I am not a professional yet, I am trying to become one and maybe contribute to the development of nano technologies.

March 06, 2011

Interesting Facts and Nanotechnology

Nanotechnology is a technology, which allows to work with substances on the levels of individual atoms. During traditional methods of production, scientists work with portions of tissue, which consist of billions of atoms. Even now, with such powerful technological base, it is almost impossible to view the smallest parts of an atom.

Image Credit - DebateitOut.com
In 1959, Nobel Laureate, Richard Feynman predicted that if the humanity will learn how to manipulate separate atoms, it will be possible to synthesize almost anything. And he was absolutely right, in 1981 the first tool for atom manipulation was introduced – the tunneling microscope, which was invented by scientists from IBM.

It turned out that by using this microscope scientists could not only see individual atoms, but also to lift and move them around. This demonstrated the ability to manipulate atoms and brought an idea to build new subsctances by moving them around and stacking in something new, it was like building a house with a set of bricks.

Traditionally, nanotechnology is divided into three major areas:
  • manufacturing of electronic circuits and schemes, the elements of which consist of several atoms
  • creation of nano-machines and nano-robots, for examples mechanisms and robots the size of a molecule
  • direct manipulation of atoms and molecules in order to assembly of them something new.

February 15, 2011

NanoArt 2011 INTERNATIONAL ONLINE COMPETITION

FREE Entries - Open to All Artists and Scientists - Seed Images of 3 Nanostructures are Provided for Further Artistic Creation

Submission deadline March 31, 2011
 
NanoArt is a new art discipline at the art-science-technology intersections. To read more about NanoArt and Nanotechnology please visit the entire nanoart21.org website. The 5th anniversary edition of the worldwide competition NanoArt 2011 is open to all artists 18 years and older. The online exhibition will open for public in April, 2011.
Jurors: Dr. Anatoli Korkin (PhD in Physics from Moscow Lomonosov State University) is Associate Research Professor at Arizona State University and President of Nano & Giga Solutions, a company that provides research and software development in the area of computational chemistry and materials design for nanotechnology applications and consulting and project management in nanotechnology education, science, and innovation; Hugh McGrory is an Irish filmmaker/photographer and a NanoArt pioneer who has built a strong reputation for innovation through experimentation. He was filmmaker in residence at the Toomre Lab’s CINEMA microscopy department, Yale University School of Medicine for summer 2007, researching, collecting and creating moving images of the living cell and exploring the wider area of scientific imaging. He is now the Creative Director of Culture Shock Marketing in New York City.
Winners will be notified and published online on May 31, 2011. The competition will be promoted on different venues online, nanoart21.org contacts, word-of-mouth. The artists could also promote the competition on their websites and other venues.
For the 5th anniversary edition of this competition, nanoart21.org founded by artist and scientist Cris Orfescu (www.crisorfescu.com) will provide 3 high resolution monochromatic electron scans of nanosculptures created by Orfescu. The participating artists will have to alter the provided image(s) in any artistic way to finish the artistic-scientific process and create NanoArt work(s). The artists and scientists are strongly encouraged to participate with their own images as long as these visualize micro or nano structures.
For more information, visit NanoArt 2011 competition site. 

December 28, 2010

Fwd: Your Paper Makes SSRN Top Ten List

 


Dear Mohamad Mova Al 'Afghani:

Your paper, "The Potential Role of the Human Right to Water in the Management of Indonesia's Water Resources", was recently listed on SSRN's Top Ten download list for Environment & Natural Resources eJournal. As of 12/27/2010, your paper has been downloaded 11 times. You may view the abstract and download statistics at http://papers.ssrn.com/abstract=1723205.

Top Ten Lists are updated on a daily basis. Click on the following link to view the Top Ten list for the journal Environment & Natural Resources eJournal Top Ten.

Click on the following link to view all the papers in the journal Environment & Natural Resources eJournal All Papers.

To view any of the Top Ten lists, click the TOP button on any network, subnetwork, journal or topic in the Browse list reachable through the following link: http://www.ssrn.com/Browse

Your paper may be listed in the Top Ten for other networks or journals and, if so, you will receive additional notices at that time.

If you have any questions regarding this notification or any other matter, please email AuthorSupport@SSRN.com or call 877-SSRNHelp (877.777.6435 toll free). Outside of the United States, call 00+1+585+4428170.

Sincerely,

Michael C. Jensen
Chairman
Social Science Research Network


October 08, 2010

NanoArt21 Exhibition at Passion for Knowledge Festival, in Spain

"Quantum Tunneling, by Orfescu
Passion for Knowledge is a festival that brings world leading scientists and humanists together from different disciplines and cultures to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Donostia International Physics Center under the commitment for progress of science driven by the love for knowledge. Along with highlighting the thirst for knowledge as the driving force behind scientific, technological and cultural progress, the festival aims to expand the debate and to engage the society in the celebration, and is spread out to different venues in the entire city of San Sebastian. The festival comprises a number of outreach activities such as encounters, exhibitions, seminars and contests with the objective of promoting science as a cultural activity, establishing connections between scientists and citizens, and fostering the participation of the public in the dissemination of science.

The NanoArt21 exhibition closes on October 10, 2010. The exhibition curated by Cris Orfescu (USA) and Igor Campillo Santos (Spain) features 2D, video, and multimedia works authored by 31 worldwide Top 10 artists at 4 editions of the NanoArt International Online Competition: Imamedin Amiraslan (Azerbaijan), Daniela Caceta, Maria Matheus, Ricardo Tranquilin (Brazil), Bjoern Daempfling, Jan Schmoranzer (Germany), Gilberto Sossella, Simone Battiston (Italy), Teresa Majerus (Luxemburg), Pilar Azuara (Mexico), Han Halewijn (Netherlands), Elena Lucia Constantinescu (Romania), Janko Jelenc, Teja Krasek (Slovenia), Frances Geesin, Leonel Marques (UK), Anna Ursyn, Carol Flaitz, Chris Robinson, Cris Orfescu, Darcy Lewis, David Derr, David Hylton, Janis Kirstein, Jean Constant, Linda Alterwitz, Lisa Black, Patrick Millard, Shruti Gour, Deeraj Roy, Steven Pollard (USA). After the show, the artworks will be exhibited in different research centers in San Sebastian city: nanoGUNE, DIPC, the Faculty of Chemistry...
"NanoMaiastra, Brancusi - In Memoriam", by Orfescu
NanoArt21 was founded by scientist and artist Cris Orfescu, to promote NanoArt throughout the world as a reflection of the technological development. Orfescu considers that NanoArt is a more attractive and effective way of communicating with the general public in order to provide information on the new technologies of the 21st Century. NanoArt aims to raise the awareness of the general public with regard to nanotechnology and its impact on our lives.

"NanoArt is a new art discipline at the art-science-technology intersections. It features nanolandscapes (molecular and atomic landscapes which are natural structures of matter at molecular and atomic scales) and nanosculptures (structures created by scientists and artists by manipulating matter at molecular and atomic scales using chemical and physical processes). These structures are visualized with powerful research tools like scanning electron microscopes and atomic force microscopes and their scientific images are captured and further processed by using different artistic techniques to convert them into artworks showcased for large audiences." (Cris Orfescu)

June 21, 2010

TAKING THE SUMMER OFF

I have been busy traveling with my new LLC (Center for Emerging Technologies). Got a few contracts and we are doing well as a consultancy. Still working on our NIRT which is due to lapse in 2011. Most recently we submitted articles for Nanotechnology Law and Business and another to Nanotoxicology (out of UK). The first article will appear in the Summer issue and examines (critically) the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies consumer product inventory. The second is the first data from the Delphi we completed under the NIRT. My students and I are working on six more articles and we expect at least two from each of our NIRT subawards - Wisconsin, Minnesota, and South Carolina. I submitted a NUE proposal for the next two years and am pending. I am also on a U19 NIH grant proposal that is pending and a P48 NIH Superfund grant as well.

While I have been approached to write another book on Nanotechnology, I haven't pull the trigger on that. I am also attempting to rewrite a piece I wrote for Nature Nanotechnology but the reviewer were all over the map with recommendations (some of which were totally off base) and given the length restrictions attempting to accommodate this recommendations is nearly impossible. So, beyond the six articles and the work on my new book on FEAR I am a bit overwhelmed.

I will be at the 4S (social science of science) Conference in Tokyo in August. I will be speaking at the Nano-dialogue meeting at the Free University of Amsterdam in September and have two papers for a NCA ARST (rhetoric of science and tech) meeting in San Francisco in November and a SRA(risk) meeting in Salt Lake in December. In addition, I am teaching a CRD 893 class in Social Media in the fall and CRD 790 Issues in Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media and COM 562 Communication and Social Change in the spring. Pending grant may affect some of this.

We did manage a hire to work with PCOST (Public Communication of Science and Technology). Dr. Andrew Binder from U Wisconsin will join us as an assistant professor in communication and will be associate director of PCOST. I expect a small team of doctoral and masters students to work with me as well.

So.... we will take a few months off and re-examine the state of this blog. I would like to broaden the subject field. Let me know what you think.

May 18, 2010

Add your lawfirm to our Lawfirm Directory (and get featured!)

 

In case you haven’t realize, the Nanotechnology Law blog adds a few links in the tabs: Lawfirm Directory and Add Lawfirm.

Lawfirm directory is a new feature aimed at collecting information about lawfirms practising Nanotechnology related issue. If you fill out the form and request a review, we will consider the application subject to further documentation provided by you.

Please note that the review is not an advertorial. If you request an advertorial, we will have to disclose it in the blog post.

Click here to download the list of firms and here (or scroll below) to fill out the form.

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Related:

Solo Practicioner Lawyer, a Trend?
The future of work: no cubicle culture, smaller companies, working from home



April 14, 2010

 
National Science Foundation (NSF) Logo, reprod...Image via Wikipedia
Northeastern to host Global Regulation of Nanotechnologies conference in Boston, May 7 to 8 (Nanowerk News) Leading international experts on the global regulation of nanotechnologies, including scientists, lawyers, ethicists and officials from governments, industry stakeholders, and NGOs will join in a two-day conference May 7-8, 2010 at Northeastern University’s School of Law.
The conference will identify best practices that address the needs of industries, the public and regulators. Speakers include representatives from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Brazil Ministry of Science and Technology, the Korean governent, the International Conference of Chemicals Management and National Science Foundation-funded university-industry collaborations.

Looks like an interesting conference folks...

April 11, 2010

Untitled


This announcement below is from Foresight Institute.




Foresight Update 23.39: All conference videos now posted - April 9, 2010

 

Discuss these news stories at http://foresight.org/nanodot.


We are happy to announce that all videos from Foresight 2010, our January conference, are now posted: http://www.vimeo.com/album/176287

There are 17 videos, so in case you'd like some guidance in getting started, consider starting with the top three talks as rated by conference participants:

Special thanks to Monica Anderson, Miron Cuperman, and TechZulu (Efren Toscano) for their work on this project.

If you enjoy the videos and have not yet joined Foresight or donated in 2010, we encourage you to chip in and help fund this work: https://www.networkforgood.org/donation/MakeDonation.aspx?ORGID2=770119168

We hope to see you at the next Foresight Conference!






 

March 31, 2010

PROBLEM WITH NANO TATA

An embarrassing moment for Nano Tata. The article appeared in multiple outlets though I found it on DISGRASIAN.com.

We are examining how this event is being amplified in the net-media especially social media.

The incident happened by a man from Mumbai who escaped the explosion. The explosion was linked to a faulty electric switch. The V that appears over the plate is composed a flowers, a celebratory wreath that went up in flames as well.

To date, there is little evidence this event is being amplified in the discourse over nanotechnology in print or in netnews.

March 16, 2010

Google's exit and the Great FireWall of China

According to news agencies, it is very likely now that Google will exit China. A recent interview in the BBC revealed a targetted attack to gmail account owned by Chinesse Human Rights activists.

Will this triggers the creation of a new web-block? Will the future of the Chinese Web goes different way from the mainstream Internet? The Berlin wall did collapsed but the great firewall remains because the firewall has no direct effect on the Chinese economy. 

This could be the beginning of an entirely new internet culture.

March 09, 2010

NanoArt Works by Cris Orfescu in Los Angeles


Presented by EM & Co, 7940 W. 3rd St., L.A., CA 90048
RSVP: rsvp@emandco.com | 323.782.8155 | emandco.com

March 11 - April 8
Opening Reception: Thursday, March 11, 7-10 pm

About Cris Orfescu:

Cris Orfescu was born in Bucharest, Romania, and has lived and worked in Los Angeles since 1991. A scientist by day, he runs an analytical laboratory which uses nanotechnology to design improved lithium batteries. The molecular landscapes of various materials with which he works, measured in nanometers, are his inspiration and jumping-off point for his art. Using an electron microscope, he manipulates compounds and chemicals to create nano-sculptures, captures the images, which he then blows up into large artworks, digitizes, and applies color. A self-taught artist, he has been experimenting for over 40 years with different media and art forms, including digital art, murals, acrylic and oil painting, mixed media, and collage. 'NanoArt', a term he has coined, reflects the transition from Science to Art through Technology.

Orfescu has shown his works in numerous solo and group exhibitions in the US, Italy, France, Finland, Korea, UK, Ireland, Spain, Germany, Colombia, and Greece, and has won many awards in juried shows. For more information, please visit: www.crisorfescu.com.

Here are some extracts from prestigious publications about his work:

"...artists face a fundamental hurdle" trying to represent "the molecular landscapes of various materials, where features are measured in nanometers... For abstractionists like Mr. Orfescu though, such limitations are simply invitations to let color and shape-shifting run wild." (The New York Times)

"Artist and scientist Cris Orfescu manipulates chemicals and creates nano-sculptures, which he then blows up into large artworks with an electron scanning microscope." (The Wall Street Journal)

"Shouting their presence in loud shades of red, blue and yellow, artist and scientist Cris Orfescu's images look first like abstract pieces. The colorful curves, angular lines and sudden bursts that command the canvases appear to be the fantastical expression of the artist's whim and creative taste...Orfescu's partner in the exhibit, photographer Rick Chinelli, said "personally, I think that Cris works on another level both physically and mentally." (Pasadena Star News)

"Cris Orfescu lives in a fun universe, populated by phantasmagoric creatures which one would say come from another planet... In his studio-lab he is having a good time sculpting the imperceptible." (translated from the French magazine Stuff)

About EM & Co

EM & Co, a West 3rd Street boutique, supplies fashion-conscious shoppers with a well-orchestrated mix of fashions from world-class designers (i.e., Vivienne Westwood, Iodice, Stella McCartney, JC de Castelbajac, Beatriz), as well as innovative styles from emerging L.A. talent. Featuring over 30 lines from around the world in its gallery-like space, EM & Co is also an active supporter of local talent, hosting monthly art exhibits and other events featuring local artists and designers. For more information about EM & Co, please visit: www.emandco.com.

October 21, 2009

Rules for Dwarfs Risk Regulation of Nanotechnology and its International Context

A conference on nanotechnology will be held in Germany 30 November-2 December. According to the website:
We convene actors from Germany, Europe, and the United States to link previously separated regulatory debates. Participants will develop regulatory recommendations for German and European politics in frank and open discussions. This includes the prioritization of regulatory approaches and principles to guide the development of compatible regulatory systems on both sides of the Atlantic.

The price is € 160 including accommodation and meals; a reduction to € 80 is available for students. More detail here.

October 11, 2009

Calls for premarket registration of nanotech product

EEB calls for premarket registration, stakeholders consultation and adequate legislative framework before a deeper entrance in nanotech market is made. In its brochure, it deems voluntary regulation as unsuccessful. I have yet to see where the failures are, but the EEB claims for lack of participation on the enactments of these codes.

It appears to me that the EEB stance are 'precautionary' in essence and relies more on command-and-control approach in nanotech regulation. The argument may have some merit provided that there are huge uncertainties surrounding nanotech products.

More regulatory framework of precautionary nature may reduce the risk of future market failure. But over-precautions will have implications on the growing market for nanotech.

Read more here.

October 07, 2009

NanoArt 2009 INTERNATIONAL ONLINE COMPETITION - 4th Edition


FREE Entries - Open to All Artists and Scientists - Seed Images of 3 Nanosculptures are Provided for Further Artistic Creation

Submission deadline January 15, 2010

The worldwide competition NanoArt 2009 is open to all artists 18 years and older. The online exhibition will open for public on January 20, 2010.

Jurors: Dr. Pilar Irala (PhD, History of Art), world renowned photographer, expert on contemporary art, photography, and new technologies, and member of the International Association of Art Critics; apart from her activity as international photographer, Art critic and curator, she is currently Professor of Photography and Contemporary Art at San Jorge University (Spain) and co-director of the contemporary photography and music ensemble animAMusicae; Guillermo Muñoz, physicist and PhD candidate in Photonics, works in the field of Nanotechnology at Material Science Institute of Valencia University (Spain); he is part of the 'Piratas de la Ciencia' science communication group and is working as moderator for the international Art and Science network Yasmin; recently, he curated the NanoArt exhibition 'Nanoconfluencias: miradas artísticas hacia lo infinitamente pequeño'.

For the 4th edition of this competition, nanoart21.org founded by artist and scientist Cris Orfescu (www.crisorfescu.com and www.absolutearts.com/nanoart) will provide 3 high resolution monochromatic electron scans of nanosculptures created by him. The participating artists will have to alter the provided image(s) in any artistic way to finish the artistic-scientific process and create NanoArt work(s). The artists and scientists are strongly encouraged to participate with their own images as long as these visualize micro or nanostructures.

The artists can participate with up to 5 images (artworks). All submitted works will be exhibited on the nanoart21.org site until March 31, 2010, together with artist's name, a short description of the artistic process, and artist's web site and e-mail. The top 10 artists will be exhibited on nanoart21.org site for one full year and will be invited to exhibit at the 3rd edition of The International Festival of NanoArt. The previous editions of the festival were held in Finland and Germany

NanoArt is a new art discipline at the art-science-technology intersections. It features nanolandscapes (molecular and atomic landscapes which are natural structures of matter at molecular and atomic scales) and nanosculptures (structures created by scientists and artists by manipulating matter at molecular and atomic scales using chemical and physical processes). These structures are visualized with powerful research tools like scanning electron microscopes and atomic force microscopes and their scientific images are captured and further processed by using different artistic techniques to convert them into artworks showcased for large audiences. To read more about NanoArt and Nanotechnology please visit http://nanoart21.org.

For more information, please visit the competition site at http://nanoart21.org/html/nanoart_2009.html or send e-mail to 2009@nanoart21.org

For the Latest News on Art, Science, Technology, Follow me on TWITTER @ http://twitter.com/nanoart

September 14, 2009

NanoArt for “Pay It Forward” International Exhibition

Orfescu will donate a NanoArt limited edition print to IRSCA Gifted Education “PAY IT FORWARDInternational Exhibition.

To All Fine Artists of the World:

« Pay it Forward » to the generations to come, by DONATING AN ARTWORK for gifted and talented children!

Gifted Children of Romania need their FIRST Gifted Education Center in their country. A center where they can learn, where their TALENTS, DREAMS and ABILITIES can be supported to reach their maximum potential. This center costs $1 mil. Any one of us can contribute to this wonderful work.

Gifted children need hope. They shall be offered the support from people with great souls, who understand how much they need support NOW.

BE AN AMBASSADOR OF GIFTED CHILDREN IN YOUR COUNTRY AND BE PART OF THE GENERATION PAY IT FORWARD.

INTERNATIONAL EXHIBITION

Between 24 October – 7 November 2009 – IRSCA Gifted Education will organize an international exhibition and auction with the artworks received. This will create a powerful awareness on the issue. All artworks purchased with this occasion will help realize the funds needed for the center. All artworks will be published online and artists shall be acknowledged for their work. Donors, at their express wish, will receive an official Certificate of Ambassador of the generation of gifted children.

The Gifted Education Center online: www.giftededu.org
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DONATED ARTWORKS

All artworks donated must be accompanied by a CERTIFICATE OF DONATION from the artist in favor of non-profit Association, IRSCA Gifted Education, registered in the Romanian Associations and Foundations Registry with #36/13.09.2004.
Details on the 1-page-CERTIFICATE: http://www.supradotati.ro/resurse/certificate-of-donation.pdf

SHIPPING ADDRESS

All artworks donated should be sent to the address mentioned in the 1-page-CERTIFICATE, up to 15 OCTOBER 2009 (postal date). [Artworks can be donated year round, first exhibited online and later on, in a Gallery, with the next International Exhibition organized by IRSCA Gifted Education]
The artist must take care of the shipping costs and the packing of the artwork.
The artworks donated will not be sent back to the artist.

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WHO CAN APPLY ?

EVERYONE !

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WHAT CAN YOU DONATE?

  • Painting

  • Drawing

  • Sculpture

  • Photography

  • Miscellaneous

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FAQ:

  • SIZE ? – any size as long as it is easy to transport

  • WEIGHT ? – any weight as long as it is easy to transport

  • FRAME ? – we recommend framed artworks (other options: w/t a frame; just a Passepartout/Matting), paintings on stretched canvas, or any artworks that can be easily exhibited

Recommended: We recommend that you send along with your artwork your – artistic statement – a description of the artwork – what made you support us? THANK YOU


WHAT ABOUT MY ARTWORK?

You will be announced if your artwork has been sold, and also the name/company of the buyer.
If your artwork has not been sold in this first edition of the Pay It Forward International Exhibition, it will be included in the next one.

For any QUESTIONS please email me at maiastefana@gmail.com

ORGANIZERS:


maia-oprea-fine-art Maia Ştefana Oprea
IRSCA Gifted Education Cultural Projects Director
Professional Independent Artist
www.maia-fine-art.com
maiastefana@gmail.com
dfleiss Dorothea Fleiss
Director Association DF&EWA Stuttgart
http://dfewa-international.blogspot.com/

Honorary Ambassador of the First Gifted Education Center for gifted & talented children in Romania


Thank you,
Monica Gheorghiu
Vice President
IRSCA
Gifted Education
www.supradotati.ro
Founder and Initiator of EDUGATE –The Romanian Consortium for the Education of Gifted and Talented Children
www.edu-gate.ro
+40 729 029 484
http://twitter.com/IRSCA
mgheorghiu@supradotati.ro

August 10, 2009

'Disruptive' Technology in Water Supply

As I have written in the previous post, nanotech may be able to revolutionize drinking water provision. Recently at the 2009 TED, an engineer demonstrated a non chemical nano-filtration bottle that could change filthy water into drinking water in a matter of second. The cost of the bottle is still quite high, around 116-170 GBP depending on the volume (filtration of up to 4,000 to 6,000 litres).

However, with better manufacturing, the price of the filter may significantly decrease in the future. If employed in a larger scale, this technology may decentralize water treatment facility and open doors for competition in the water sector.


July 27, 2009

What will happen if the world's population go down?

Lower land prices, higher labor prices, said Pete Alcorn. Surely, it will bring tremendous changes to social system: land reform, democratization and the rise of middle class. Alcorn suggest us to move beyond malthusian economy and pay attention to the tendency of population decrease.

In previous posts we have discussed a little about post-scarcity economics, which is a by-product of Molecular Manufacturing (MM). It may turn out that even without MMworld's population growth may decrease to negative within one century.

The reason for decreasing population may vary. In the past, it can happen because of wars. Now it seems unlikely. So plague -- such as virulent influenza viruses -- could be a scenario. Another scenario would be a relatively successful health and social programs which increases longevity but turned population growth into negative.

See Alcorn's talk here:




July 10, 2009

[OOT] The end of microsoft

Some says that this will be the end of microsoft. Maybe not, but at least it will lower the price of computers.

June 30, 2009

Legal loopholes in Nano Liability

Chris Phoenix at CRN referred us to a new report from Investor Environmental Health Network. The Report highlighted 8 loopholes under current regulations which, if go unrepaired, will trigger litigation bomb in the future.

June 09, 2009

Cris Orfescu and Winners of the NanoArt International Online Competition to Exhibit at the EuroNanoForum 2009


Cris Orfescu ( http://www.crisorfescu.com/ ) and winners from all 3 editions of the NanoArt International Online Competition ( http://www.nanoart21.org/ ) have been invited to exhibit at the EuroNanoForum 2009, June 2-5, in Prague, Czech Republic.
Frances Geesin (UK), Bjoern Daempfling (Germany), Carol Cooper, Eva Lewarne (Canada), Chris Robinson, Darcy Lewis, David Derr, David Hylton, Renata Spiazzi, Fred Marinello, Philip Brun Del Re, Ursula Freer, Diane Vetere, Steven Pollard (USA), Teja Krasek (Slovenia), Imameddin Amiraslan (Azerbaijan), and Teresa Majerus (Luxembourg) will show their works at this event. 36 prints and 2 multimedia works will be exhibited in diferent locations at the Prague Congress Center.
EuroNanoForum 2009 is the 4th conference of a set of international nanotechnology conferences organized within the framework of national Presidencies of the European Union. The conference will be hosted at the Prague Congress Centre, as an official event of the Czech Presidency, under the auspices of the Czech Ministry for Education Youth and Sports and with the support of the Industrial Technologies Program of the European Commission. Focusing on "Nanotechnology for sustainable economy", EuroNanoForum 2009 will address the contribution and challenges of nanotechnology research for a sustainable development of European industry and society, such as the need for reduction in carbon emissions and fossil fuels dependence, the substantial increase in energy demand, pollution control, clean water management and sustainable quality of life of the European citizen, as well as material production sustainability and efficiency. In this respect, nanotechnology presents many opportunities and challenges that have to be analyzed at international level through a safe, responsible and integrated approach, as first presented by the ENF2003 conference ( http://www.euronanoforum2009.eu/ ).
NanoArt is the expression of the Nanotechnology Revolution and reflects the transition from Science to Art using Technology. This new art discipline features nanolandscapes (molecular and atomic landscapes which are natural structures of matter at molecular and atomic scales) and nanosculptures (structures created by scientists and artists by manipulating matter at molecular and atomic scales using chemical and physical processes). These structures are visualized with powerful research tools like scanning electron microscopes and atomic force microscopes and their scientific images are captured and further processed by using different artistic techniques to convert them into artworks showcased for large audiences to educate the public with creative images that are appealing and acceptable.

June 05, 2009

Virtual worlds and the science gateway to democracy

C Milburn argued that virtual worlds such as Secondlife opens the gateway for science towards democracy. As I have previously written, secondlife's copybot resembles a nanofactory. Future post molecular manufacturing society could be benefited by the simulation from these virtual societies. How secondlife handle copybot might be an inspiration on how we handle nanofac.

Download the paper "Atoms and Avatars: Virtual Worlds as Massively-Multiplayer Laboratories" here.

June 03, 2009

Farewell, NanoBot

What a small, strange trip it's been.

I have been covering nanotechnology in some form since 2001, and I believe I have taken it as far as I care to.

I am proud of the way this blog became a voice for those who believed government and business were taking nanotech in the wrong direction.

I did my duty as a journalist. I comforted the afflicted and afflicted the comfortable -- even at the cost of my own employment in some cases. Now, it is time to move on.

The various twists and turns in my personal and professional life have led me to study, and write about, the future of the auto industry and the corrupt U.S. criminal justice system. Expect to see more of my work in those areas.

Meanwhile, I leave this six-year NanoBot archive to the ages. And I will exit with the same words that I have often repeated.

What is nanotechnology? Well, what do you want it to be?

June 02, 2009

Before the Internet, I was a better journalist

You know, my farewell to social media has lifted such a burden from me that I am considering taking it a step further.

When I began my journalism career, I covered some pretty interesting, complicated stories -- from health effects of trash incinerators in neighborhoods, to controversies surrounding methadone clinics to cultural implications of bilingual education. I covered these issues and more back in the 1980s and early '90s -- before the Internet existed.

I got out more, I talked to more people, I made more phone calls, I read more books, I went to more libraries, and I think I was actually a better writer and reporter back then.

Since then, I have seen how the Internet echo chamber can take one wrong piece of information and, via that lazy reporting tool, Google, fling it around the world and back a hundred times until bad information becomes conventional wisdom.

I have seen how the availability of tiny fragments of half-information, mostly out of context, can turn lazy reporters into "instant experts" because all it takes to write a successful "news story" is the ability to package information well so that it makes sense within certain closed-loop assumptions.

I've seen how addictive personalities and egomaniacs can obtain instant gratification from "connections" with others hunched behind screens, yet still not know the first thing about real communication.

I have already rejected Web 2.0. I am almost ready to tell Web 1.0 to get lost, as well.

Maybe an hour a day to answer e-mail, read some news and look up a few things. Then, back to gaining knowledge the old-fashioned way -- by communicating in a real way with real people.

Just a nice thought for now. I might follow through.

May 21, 2009

International Regulation

International Approaches to the Regulatory Governance of Nanotechnology" is available for download from the RGI website.

Nanotechnology seemed to be going towards the Private Ordering path

March 28, 2009

Convergent Regulatory Framework?

Does nanotech regulation needs to be standardized or can state develop their own laws about nanotech? I am more into a standardized framework, although of course, in reality there is always a gap. Read Lloyds report here.

March 22, 2009

The US Rules the Wave?

The US (and not the brits) will rule the wave. US will become the next Ottoman Empire. The next 100 years will be all about the United States. Europe will decline. Space-based solar power will be developed. Stratfor founder George Friedman said on the launching of his new book.



Hat tip to Chris Phoenix at CRN

March 21, 2009

Nanotech Law Webinar

KHK Law is holding webinars starting next month:

All webinars will be conducted from 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. EST

April 1, 2009 Legislation, Regulation and Small Business – 2009 Outlook

June 4, 2009 Nanotechnology in the Marketplace

Sept. 10, 2009 Nanotechnology, Food and Food Packaging

Nov. 19, 2009 Product Liability and Nanotechnology

The cost for Individual Webinar is $145 and $495 if you signed up all four. More detail here.


March 18, 2009

Nano Governance

I hate overstrecthing the word 'governance' into nanotech, but it seems this word is compatible with any new products subjected to regulation. I suggest you to have a look at this publication, titled FramingNano Project: A multistakeholder dialogue platform framing the responsible development of Nanosciences & Nanotechnologies, MAPPING STUDY ON REGULATION AND GOVERNANCE OF NANOTECHNOLOGIES. Download full report here.

November 12, 2008

NanoArt 2008 INTERNATIONAL ONLINE COMPETITION - 3rd Edition


FREE Entries - Open to All Artists and Scientists - Nanostructures Seed Images are Provided for Further Artistic Creation
Submission deadline January 15, 2009

NanoArt is a new art discipline at the art-science-technology intersections. It features nanolandscapes (molecular and atomic landscapes which are natural structures of matter at molecular and atomic scales) and nanosculptures (structures created by scientists and artists by manipulating matter at molecular and atomic scales using chemical and physical processes). These structures are visualized with powerful research tools like scanning electron microscopes and atomic force microscopes and their scientific images are captured and further processed by using different artistic techniques to convert them into artworks showcased for large audiences. To read more about NanoArt and Nanotechnology please visit http://www.nanoart21.org/.
The worldwide competition NanoArt 2008 is open to all artists 18 years and older. The online exhibition will open for public on January 20, 2009. Judges: Jeanne Brasile, artist, director and primary curator of the Walsh Gallery at the Seton Hall University; Rocky Rawstern, artist and consultant, former editor of Nanotechnology Now, awarded with the 2005 Foresight Institute Prize in Communication. Winners will be notified and published online after March 31, 2009. The competition will be promoted on different venues online, nanoart21.org contacts, word-of-mouth. The artists could also promote the competition on their websites and other venues.
For the 2008 edition of this competition, nanoart21.org founded by artist and scientist Cris Orfescu (http://www.crisorfescu.com/) will provide 3 high resolution monochromatic electron scans for competitors to choose from. The participating artists will have to alter the provided image(s) in any artistic way to finish the artistic-scientific process and create NanoArt work(s). The artists and scientists are strongly encouraged to participate with their own images as long as these visualize micro or nanostructures.
The artists can participate with up to 5 images (artworks). All submitted works will be exhibited on the nanoart21.org site until March 31, 2009, together with artist's name, a short description of the artistic process, and artist’s web site and e-mail. The top 10 artists will be exhibited on nanoart21.org site for one full year and will be invited to exhibit at the 3rd edition of The International Festival of NanoArt. The previous editions of the festival were held in Finland and Germany.

For more information, please visit the competition site at http://nanoart21.org/html/nanoart_2008.html or send e-mail to 2008@nanoart21.org

October 06, 2008

The 2nd International Festival of NanoArt

The 2nd International Festival for NanoArt organized by NanoArt21 (http://www.nanoart21.org/) will be hosted in Stuttgart, Germany by NAHVISION Institute for International Culture Exchange, between November 1st and November 30th, 2008. The show is curated by artist/scientist Cris Orfescu (USA) and art professor Dorothea Fleiss (Germany).
18 artists from 8 countries were selected to participate with their works at this invitational event: Geert Lensens (Belgium), Hugh McGrory (Ireland), Teresa Majerus (Luxembourg), Bjoern Daempfling, Dorothea Fleiss (Germany), Han Halewijn (Netherlands), Elena Lucia Constantinescu (Romania), Teja Krasek (Slovenia), Chris Robinson, Cris Orfescu, David Derr, David Hylton, Derek Toomre, Jan Kirstein, Judith Lightfeather, Lisa Black, Siddhartha Pathak, Steven Pollard (USA).
NanoArt is a new art discipline at the art-science-technology intersections. It features nanolandscapes (molecular and atomic landscapes which are natural structures of matter at molecular and atomic scales) and nanosculptures (structures created by scientists and artists by manipulating matter at molecular and atomic scales using chemical and physical processes). These structures are visualized with powerful research tools like scanning electron microscopes and atomic force microscopes and their scientific images are captured and further processed by using different artistic techniques to convert them into artworks showcased for large audiences.
NanoArt is the expression of the New Technological Revolution reflecting the transition from Science to Art using Technology and could be for the 21st Century what Photography was for the 20th Century. Over the past two decades the ability to measure and manipulate matter at atomic and molecular scales has led to the discovery of novel materials and phenomena. These advances underlie the multidisciplinary areas known today as Nanotechnology. The responsible development and application of Nanotechnology could lead to create jobs and economic growth, to enhance national security, and to improve the quality of life. Some of the benefits would be cleaner manufacturing processes, stronger and lighter building materials, smaller and faster computers, and more powerful ways to detect and treat disease. NanoArt is aimed to raise the public awareness of Nanotechnology and its impact on our lives.For updated information about the event, please send e-mail to info@nanoart21.org or check the event site at http://nanoartfestival-stuttgart.blogspot.com/

NanoArt by Orfescu at the Prince of Asturias Awards

Cris Orfescu has been invited to exhibit NanoArt to the 2008 Prince of Asturias Awards at the Campoamor Theatre in Oviedo, the capital of Asturias, Spain.
The Prince of Asturias Foundation has conferred its Awards yearly ever since 1981. They are intended to acknowledge scientific, technical, cultural, social and humanitarian work carried out internationally by individuals, groups or organizations in the following eight categories: communication and humanities, social sciences, arts, letters, scientific and technical research, international cooperation, concord and sports. H.R.H. Felipe de Borbón, Prince of Asturias and Heir to the throne of Spain is the Honorary President of the Foundation that bears His name since its creation in 1980. The aim of the Foundation is to contribute to encouraging and promoting scientific, cultural and humanistic values that form part of mankind's universal heritage. Bob Dylan, Al Gore, George M. Whiteside, Google, National Geographic Society, Maya Plisetskaya, Woody Allen, Paco de Lucia, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Lance Armstrong, Vittorio Gassmann, Yehudi Menuhin, Michail Gorbachev, Carl Lewis, are among the winners since the beginning of the award. The award presentation ceremony is considered as one of the most important cultural events in the international agenda. Throughout its history, these awards have been honored with different recognitions, such as UNESCO’s declaration in 2004 acknowledging the extraordinary contribution of these awards to mankind's cultural heritage. This year, the grand presentation ceremony is to be held on Friday, October 24th at 6:30 pm.

NanoArt is a new art discipline at the art-science-technology intersections. It features nanolandscapes (molecular and atomic landscapes which are natural structures of matter at molecular and atomic scales) and nanosculptures (structures created by scientists and artists by manipulating matter at molecular and atomic scales using chemical and physical processes). These structures are visualized with powerful research tools like scanning electron microscopes and atomic force microscopes and their scientific images are captured and further processed by using different artistic techniques to convert them into artworks showcased for large audiences.
NanoArt is the expression of the New Technological Revolution reflecting the transition from Science to Art using Technology and could be for the 21st Century what Photography was for the 20th Century. Over the past two decades the ability to measure and manipulate matter at atomic and molecular scales has led to the discovery of novel materials and phenomena. These advances underlie the multidisciplinary areas known today as Nanotechnology. The responsible development and application of Nanotechnology could lead to create jobs and economic growth, to enhance national security, and to improve the quality of life. Some of the benefits would be cleaner manufacturing processes, stronger and lighter building materials, smaller and faster computers, and more powerful ways to detect and treat disease. NanoArt is aimed to raise the public awareness of Nanotechnology and its impact on our lives.
For updated information about the event, please check the event site at http://www.fundacionprincipedeasturias.org/ing/00/index.html.
To view Orfescu's work visit http://www.crisorfescu.com/ or www.absolutearts.com/nanoart

July 24, 2008

NanoArt K12 Program


The NanoArt K12 program has been launched by NanoArt21 in collaboration with The Nanotechnology Group. The purpose of this worldwide program is to support the education of the new generations of artists and scientists and to promote the art-science-technology intersections and NanoArt for a better youth development. Please read about NanoArt here.


nanoart21.org founded by artist and scientist Cris Orfescu (http://www.crisorfescu.com/) is providing 3 images of nano or microstructures for children and teens to convert them into works of art through any artistic technique. The electron micrographs depict graphite micro and nanoparticles.


All artworks will be posted on the NanoArt21 site, and the best works will be selected to be shown in physical galleries worldwide.


To read more on how to participate to this program, please visit the NanoArt K12 page.