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Foresight Activities > Foresight Conferences > The 1st Adv. Nanotech. Conf.

Program available in PDF format

1st Conference on Advanced Nanotechnology:
Research, Applications, and Policy

Preparing for the Feynman Revolution

October 22 to 24, 2004
Crystal City Marriott Hotel,
Washington, DC USA
(1st Symposium on Molecular Machine Systems
is included as Day One of the Conference)

Download the Conference brochure in PDF format

  molecular mill


The 1st Conference on Advanced Nanotechnology: Research, Applications, and Policy will be held at the Crystal City Marriott Hotel in Washington, DC. The Conference will begin on the morning of Friday, October 22, and end Sunday, October 24, 2004.

Advances in a wide variety of technical fields are leading to the ability to build large, complex devices to atomic precision using molecular machine systems — an ability first recognized by Richard Feynman over 40 years ago. In the decades to come, this powerful technology is expected to revolutionize virtually all physical technologies, with profound impacts on fields from medicine and the environment to space transportation and homeland security.

Foresight Institute's first Conference on Nanotechnology, which pre-dated the U.S. National Nanotechnology Initiative by a decade, was the first comprehensive conference on the topic of nanotechology. Foresight-sponsored events continue to be the premiere venue for discussing new and innovative multidisciplinary research in nanotechnology and what these developments will mean for society.

This new meeting series will examine all aspects of advanced nanotechnology, also termed molecular manufacturing or MNT: research status, prospects for disruptive applications, and policy issues — including maximizing access for those who would not otherwise benefit.

Researchers and technologists should attend Days 1 and 2; policy advisors, public interest representatives, investors, and interested citizens should attend Days 2 and 3. Those wishing a comprehensive picture of the Next Industrial Revolution should attend Days 1, 2, and 3. For those planning a career or investment related to this emerging field, attendance on all three days is strongly recommended.

Download the Conference brochure in PDF format. Requires ACROBAT READER by ADOBE.

Topics Covered

This meeting will examine the prospect of building with atomic precision using molecular machine systems. How far along are we toward this goal? What will it mean for the environment, medicine, national competitiveness, and the military? How can we aim for preferred social outcomes? Join us as we look at the Next Industrial Revolution in a forum accessible to policymakers and NGO representatives as well as scientists and technologists across multiple disciplines.

Select the days most relevant to your interests:

Friday: For researchers and technologists

The 1st Symposium on Molecular Machine Systems will be held as Day One of the Conference.

  • Introduction to Molecular Nanotechnology: Molecular Physics plus Systems Engineering
  • Review of Technical Readiness
  • Macromolecular design and synthesis: What is the state of the art in protein engineering, DNA engineering, 3D structures?
  • Scanning probe manipulation systems: What are the relevant techniques, and what do they enable?
  • Systems design: What do we now know about the implementation of molecular manufacturing systems? About their performance?
  • Modeling of molecular mechanical systems and mechanosynthetic operations: What are the techniques, and what do they enable from an engineering perspective?
  • Systems control: How will these complex systems be programmed? How can the outputs of manufacturing systems be constrained?
  • Panel: Technical Readiness for MNT—A Rough Consensus
  • Rate of Technological Advance Toward MNT

Saturday: For researchers, technologists, policy advisors, public interest representatives, investors, interested citizens

  • MNT and Medicine
  • MNT and the Environment
  • MNT and the Military
  • MNT and Space Development
  • MNT and Economics
  • MNT and Intellectual Property
  • MNT, Surveillance, and Privacy
  • MNT and Social Outcomes
  • Panel/Debate: MNT and Social Outcomes/Social Justice

Sunday: For policy advisors, public interest representatives, interested citizens

  • Myths in Nanotechnology
  • Problems with Current U.S. Policy in MNT
  • Lagging in MNT: Risks to the U.S.
  • Balancing the National Nanotechnology Initiative: Adding MNT to the U.S. Research Portfolio

Also on both Friday and Saturday evenings—

Special Interest Group meetings (SIGs): R&D, Environment, Economics, Medical, Military, Space, Intellectual Property, Surveillance/Privacy, Social Outcomes


Accepted Abstracts

Submission information:

There will be oral presentations and poster sessions during the conference. All those who wish either to speak or to present a poster must submit an abstract. The abstracts should be no longer than 500 words including references and footnotes. Each submitted abstract may include only one graphic in jpg or gif format. The size should be no larger than 400 x 400 pixels (will be displayed at 72 dpi). Abstracts not in the appropriate format will be returned without being considered.

All accepted abstracts will be permanently available on the web at

Conference Chairs

Friday Co-Chairs: Prof. William Goddard (Caltech) and Prof. Ralph Merkle (Georgia Tech)

Saturday Co-Chairs: Scott Mize (Foresight Institute) and Brad Templeton (Electronic Frontier Foundation)

Sunday Co-Chairs: Howard Lovy (Nanobot) and Scott Mize (Foresight Institute)

Foresight Institute VP Christine Peterson will serve as Chair of the meeting overall.


Foresight Institute

Corporate Sponsors

Draper Fisher Jurvetson  nanoTITAN logo

Howard, Rice, Nemerovski, Canady, Falk and Rabkin logo  

The Analytiq Group logo

Information about corporate sponsorship opportunities, or please contact the Foresight Institute

Media Sponsors

Nanotechnology Now logo


NanoApex logo

The Arlington Institute logo

Nanovip logo

NanoBot logo

Keynote and Speakers

Ray Kurzweil
Winner, National Medal of Technology

2004 Foresight Institute Feynman Prize Winners
Recipients of the Theory and Experimental prizes will be announced at the Feynman Prize Banquet

Friday Speakers

Nadrian Seeman, New York University, on three-dimensional DNA construction and computation
Christian Schafmeister, Stephen Habay, Christopher Levins, Paul Morgan, Sharad Gupta, Gregory Bird; University of Pittsburgh; on a synthetic approach to water soluble nanoscale molecules with controlled structures
Amar Flood and Fraser Stoddart, UCLA, on artificial molecular machines with mechanically interlocked components, via supramolecular assistance to covalent synthesis
David Baker, University of Washington, on designing stable protein structures with a specified backbone folding structure
William Goddard, Caltech, on modeling molecular machine parts and construction
Ari Requicha, University of Southern California, on nanorobotics and programmable assembly of molecular-size components by self-assembly and scanning probes
J. Storrs Hall, Molecular Engineering Research Institute and Nanorex Inc., on techniques for the modeling of molecular mechanical systems, and what these enable for the engineering of active nanosystems
Robert A. Freitas Jr., Institute for Molecular Manufacturing, on diamond mechanosynthesis
Tihamer Toth-Fejel, General Dynamics, on indirectly-replicating nanomachines: a kinematic cellular automata approach
Tad Hogg, HP Labs, on control of microscopic robotic systems with simulation examples from nanomedicine applications
K. Eric Drexler, Molecular Engineering Research Institute, on paths from current research to functional molecular machine systems
Ralph Merkle, Georgia Tech, on computational nanotechnology for molecular machine systems

Saturday Speakers

Scott Mize, Foresight Institute, on ensuring the beneficial and vigorous development of nanotechnology
Gayle Pergamit, Aguavia and Biophiltre, LLC, on low cost, high performance filtration for medicine and the environment
Chris Phoenix, Center for Responsible Nanotechnology, on clean nanomanufacturing; and on major implications of molecular manufacturing
Stephen Gillett, Foresight Institute, and Ralph Merkle, Georgia Tech, on clean energy and resources using molecular manufacturing
Thomas McKendree, Raytheon, on molecular manufacturing for space-based construction and transportation
Calvin Shipbaugh, former RAND, on international competitiveness and national security
Robert A. Freitas Jr., Institute for Molecular Manufacturing, on nanomedicine
Bryan Bruns, Foresight Institute, on MNT for international development and reducing global poverty
David Friedman, Santa Clara University, on economic impact from molecular manufacturing
Robin Hanson, George Mason University, on MNT for increased openness, freedom & security
Brad Templeton, Electronic Frontier Foundation, on privacy issues with MNT
Debate: Nanosurveillance — Is a Transparent Society the Right Answer?

Sunday Speakers

Christine Peterson, Foresight Institute, on societal and ethical impacts of molecular manufacturing
Patrick Parker, Naval Postgraduate School, on strategic and security issues
Richard H. Smith, Nanoverse LLC, on U.S. public policy for advanced nanotechnology
Adam Keiper, The New Atlantis, on political aspects of molecular nanotechnology in the U.S.
Gary Marchant, Arizona State University, on regulatory models for molecular manufacturing
Howard Lovy, NanoBot, on the controversies and politics of molecular manufacturing
Tim Harper, CMP Cientifica and European NanoBusiness Association, on nanotechnology in the lab and for business
Neil Jacobstein, Institute for Molecular Manufacturing, on updating the Foresight Guidelines on Developing Molecular Nanotechnology
David Berube, J.D. Shipman, University of South Carolina NanoCenter, on the development of nanoscience and nanotechnology policy in the United States
Ted Sabety, Sabety+associates, PLLC, on which intellectual property policies promote growth

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