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Foresight Nanotech Institute Weekly News Digest: September 14, 2005

In this issue:

Foresight Nanotechnology Challenges

Foresight has articulated six critical challenges that humanity faces which can be addressed by nanotechnology. In the Weekly News Digest we identify news items, research breakthroughs, and events citing current research and applications providing the stepping stones to solutions to these challenges.

1. Meeting global energy needs with clean solutions

Foresight note: This technology may lead to batteries with a 20-year shelf life.

Headline: Putting Power into Battery Research
News source: SmallTimes, Inc.

mPhase Technologies is working with Rutgers University and Lucent's Bell Laboratories to devise batteries that can hold their charge much longer than today's alkaline cells. The research may lead to tiny batteries that are incorporated directly into a gadget's circuit board rather than connected by wire to it.

"This is something small, less than postage-stamp size that could be integrated into the same piece of silicon that is housing the electronics," says Ron Durando, CEO of mPhase.

mPhase Technologies
Bell Labs Innovation
Rutgers’ Energy Storage Research Group

2. Providing abundant clean water globally

Foresight note: Come to our conference and hear a presentation and panel about this challenge.

Presentation: Providing abundant clean water globally
Todd Barker, Partner, Meridian Institute

Panel: Nanotech for clean water
William Lee, President and CEO, eMembrane
Kevin McGovern, Chairman, McGovern & Associates (for KX Industries)
Fred Tepper, President, Argonide

See conference program for panel details:

3. Increasing the health and longevity of human life

Foresight note: This development will provide early detection of disease and reduce cost.

Headline: Lab-on-a-chip detects bacterial infections
News source: CNET.com by Michael Kanellos

"ST Microelectronics has developed a chip that allows doctors to see if you've been infected by antibiotic-resistant strains of Staphylococcus aureus or other sepsis causing bacteria, or bacteria in the blood."

Small Tech Advantage

4. Maximizing the productivity of agriculture

Foresight note: Come to our conference and hear a presentation and panel about this challenge.

Presentation: Maximizing productivity of agriculture
Peter Singer, Director, University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics, Canada

Panel: Nanotech for Food Production and Reducing the Environmental "Footprint" of Agriculture
Norman Scott, Dept. of Biological & Environmental Engineering, Cornell University
Peter Singer, Director, University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics
Aaron Wagoner, Director of Research and Development, Natural Nano

See conference program for panel details:

5. Making powerful information technology available everywhere

Headline: Researchers make twisted nanobelts
News source: The Register by Lucy Sherriff

Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have discovered a new, helical, zinc-oxide nanostructure that could be very useful to engineers working on nanoscale devices that rely on electromechanical coupling, such as sensors, resonators and transducers.

Professor Zhong Lin Wang, from the School of Materials Science and Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology explains that although the structure is brand new, the properties are very similar to those of existing nanobelt materials, in that they are semiconductors, and have piezoelectric properties which makes them good for electromechanical coupling.

Wang noted: "From them we can make resonators, place molecules on their surfaces to create frequency shifts - and because they are piezoelectric, make electromechanical couplings."

Georgia Institute of Technology

6. Enabling the development of space

Foresight note: Come to our conference and hear presentations about this challenge.

Presentation: State-of-the-Art Nanotechnology for Space: Near-Term and Long-Term
Scott Hubbard, Director, NASA Ames Research Center

Presentation: Enabling the Development of Space — From Carbon Nanotubes to the Space Elevator
Michael Laine, President, Liftport Group

See conference program for presentation details:

Productive Nanosystems Roadmap

Roadmap Luncheon Lecture

A Luncheon Seminar on the Technology Roadmap for Productive Nanosystems will be given on October 27, 2005 at 12:10 p.m. by Alex Kawczak, Vice President, Bio-Products and Nanomaterials, Battelle, and Scott Mize, President, Foresight Nanotech Institute. This is on the final research day of our conference.
Research sessions only: http://foresight.org/conference2005/research.html

Eric Drexler, Chief Technical Advisor, Nanorex, and Founder, Foresight Nanotech Institute, will give a talk on the Technology Roadmap for Productive Nanosystems at the Vision Weekend, October 22-23, 2005.

The vision weekend is exclusive to Foresight Participating members. This is a rare opportunity to hear these speakers such as Peter Diamandis from the X Prize Foundation, Carl Kohrt from Battelle, Aubrey de Grey from Cambridge University, and Ron Bailey from Reason, discuss the future of nanotechnology candidly and off-the-record.

Advancing Beneficial Nanotechnology

Focusing on the Cutting Edge
13th Foresight Conference on Advanced Nanotechnology

October 22-27, 2005
San Francisco Airport Marriott Hotel

Full meeting: http://foresight.org/conference2005/index.html
Research sessions only: http://foresight.org/conference2005/research.html
Vision Weekend only: http://foresight.org/conference2005/vision_weekend.html

We have updated our program and added some spectacular speakers. The Advancing Beneficial Nanotechnology Conference offers the most comprehensive program, with days dedicated to Applications and Policy, Research, and a Vision Weekend. Hear speakers discuss key advances, funding and applications. We have also assembled debates to thrash out the more controversial issues in this next Industrial Revolution.

Link to program:

Investing Debate: How Can We Overcome the "Valley Of Death?"

One of the nanotechnology’s ongoing problems is the gap between basic and applied research. Called the "the valley of death" it is the time period where the product or research is moving from the laboratory to real world application. It is a time and place where funding is sparse and surviving is key for small nanotechnology companies.

Come listen to four venture capitalists speak about the Valley of Death, how it can be overcome and issues surrounding this critical period for companies and nanotechnology innovation.

Steve Jurveston, Managing Director, Draper Fisher Jurvetson
Floyd Kvammer, Partner, Kleiner Perkins
Michael Moe, Chairman & CEO, ThinkEquity Partners
Ray Rothrock, Managing General Partner, Venrock Associates

Link to program:

New Speakers

Who Will Hate Nanotechnology and Why?
Patrick Hopkins, Millsaps College

Assessing Risks of Nanoscale Materials
Jo Anne Shatkin, Principal, The Cadmus Group, Inc.

Capturing the Environmental Benefits of Nanotechnology
Shannon Lloyd, Senior Environmental Specialist, First Environment, Inc.

Federal Government Regulation of Nanotechnology: Present and Future Trends
Nancy White, Central Michigan University

Nanotechnology and the Environment
Adam Werbach, Conservationist and former President, Sierra Club

Link to program:

New Debates & Panels

Debate: NanoBio in Humans: Are we ready to cross the Carbon Barrier?
Ron Bailey, Science Correpondent, Reason Magazine
Alan Goldstein, Biomedical Materials Engineering, Alfred University

Panel: Intellectual Property in Nanotechnology
Mark Lemley, Stanford Law School
Jerry Swiss, Partner, Foley & Lardner
Christine Peterson, VP Public Policy, Foresight Nanotech Institute

Public Equity Roundtable
Michael Weiner, CEO, Biophan Technologies, Inc.
Andrew Wahl, Managing Director, IG Partners

Link to program:

Who Attends

Foresight is the nexus point for scientists, academics, entrepreneurs, investors, and others involved in nanotech to come together. Our annual conference offers an outstanding cross-section of the nanotechnology field and beyond:

Registration Flexibility

Foresight offers an a la carte option, so you may choose to attend the entire conference, or only the sections that most interest you.

For registration options:

Hurricane Special

For those who have been impacted by Hurricane Katrina: We will hold the early-registration rate for you. Please contact Elaine@foresight.org for consideration.

Foresight Participating Members Discounts

Foresight Nanotech Institute's Participating Members receive deep discounts to the Advancing Beneficial Nanotechnology conference.

If you are attending 3-1/2 days of the conference, the registration fee is $795. If you become a Participating Member, your price is $695, and you receive additional membership benefits, including the opportunity to attend the invitation-only Vision Weekend.

For a complete list of Participating Member benefits:

Participating Members can join online:

Spotlight On Foresight Members:

Foresight Nanotech Institute has updated its membership levels and added new benefits. One of the new levels is the corporate membership. This week’s spotlight is on Foresight corporate member Nanorex, Inc.

Corporate Member – Nanorex, Inc.

"Nanorex, Inc. has recently updated their nanoENGINEER-1 gallery featuring a collection of new designs that have been simulated using a molecular mechanics engine developed specifically for nanomechanical applications. Attendees of the 13th Foresight Conference will get the opportunity to see first-hand how nanoENGINEER-1 was used to design, model and simulate the largest and most sophisticated nanodevice designs yet conceived."

For more information about Nanorex, Inc.

Foresight Lectures

Perils and Promises of Nanotechnology
October 11, 2005
Organized by Commonwealth Club Silicon Valley
San Jose, CA

Christine Peterson, Founder & V.P., Foresight Nanotech Institute
Dr. John M. Balbus, Senior Scientist, Program Director, Environmental Defense
Norm Wu, Managing Director, Alameda Capital

Moderated by: Anthony Waitz, Managing Partner, Quantum Insight and Co-founder, MIT Stanford Berkeley Nano Forum

Nanotechnology is a complex field which has great potential to deliver environmental as well as other benefits. At the same time, these same novel properties may pose new risks to workers, consumers, the public and the environment. This panel of experts will explore the possible risks and clarify the difference between near-term commercial advances and the "next industrial revolution" expected to arrive in the next few decades.

Foresight Partners

If you attend or use any of our partners' events or services, please tell them you heard about it from Foresight Nanotech Institute.

September 16-18. 2005 – Accelerating Change 2005
Organized by Acceleration Studies Foundation
Stanford, California

"Artificial Intelligence (AI) broadly defined, improves the intelligence and autonomy of our technology. Intelligence amplification (IA) empowers human beings and their social, political, and economic environments. As in previous years, a collection of today's most broad-minded, multidisciplinary, and practical change leaders will consider these twin trends from global, national, business, social, and personal foresight perspectives."

Foresight members are eligible for a $75 discount off the registration fee. Simply follow this link and use the following discount code: AC2005-FORESIGHT when registering.

November 14-16, 2005 – AccelrysWorld
Sponsored by Accelrys
London, United Kingdom

AccelrysWorld, the year’s major event for Accelrys users, will come to Europe in late 2005. The event is the venue for users to find out about the latest solutions from Accelrys and its partners, hear case study presentations, give feedback and learn from other users in round-table discussions, and network with their peers.

tinytechjobs Selected to Host Veneto Nanotech Job Center

tinytechjobs, a career web site focused on jobs in nanotechnology, microtechnology, biotechnology, and information technology, announced that it has been selected by Veneto Nanotech to host the Veneto Nanotech Job Center. The Veneto Nanotech Job Center offers a unique meeting place for prospective employers and job seekers in Italy’s vibrant nanotechnology community.

Companies, government agencies, and academic institutions can post jobs on this dedicated site that will be viewed by the thousands of experienced and highly qualified individuals who traffic the Italian site. In addition to signing up for a weekly job alert, job seekers can post their resumes to be viewed by potential employers, upload formatted documents, and set up job agents that will email jobs that meet their search criteria.
The Job Center can be found at: http://veneto.tinytechjobs.com.

Nanotech Events & News

October 3-4, 2005 – Nanomedicine: Commercializing, Drug Discovery, Delivery and Diagnostics
Cambridge, MA
Sponsored by Strategic Research Institute
Web site

Headline: Public Attitudes Toward Nano
News source: Space Daily/UPI by Charles Choi

When it comes to nanotechnology, the U.S. public apparently looks forward most to advanced medical applications that save lives and improved consumer goods that enhance quality of life, experts told UPI's Nano World.

At the same time, the U.S. public has low trust in government and industry regarding the health risks of nanotechnology, according to a new study on public attitudes toward nanotechnology from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars at the Smithsonian in Washington.

Editor’s Pick

Dear readers, this was a slow week for nanotechnology. So my cool pick of this week is "sort of" nanotechnology related. The announced technology is not nano but the quote from Dr. Brent Segal, of Nantero could easily be about research at any scale.


Headline: Startup capturing energy
Elecsci Corp. aims to harvest power from moving objects
News source: Rochester Democrat and Chronicle by David Tyler

Startup Elecsci Corp. is developing what it calls "energy harvesters" — devices that capture the kinetic energy from objects already in motion and convert that energy to power other devices.

Dr. Brent Segal, a venture capitalist and co-founder of Nantero, a nanotechnology company in Woburn, Mass., knows Grumer, Elesci CEO, from their work in Boston and said he's also watching Elecsci closely.

The technology is "one of those smack-yourself-in-the-head things where you say, 'Why didn't I think of that?'" Segal said.


About The Foresight Nanotech Institute Weekly News Digest

The Foresight Nanotech Institute Weekly News Digest is emailed every week to 15,000 individuals in more than 125 countries. Foresight Nanotech Institute is a member-supported organization. We offer membership levels appropriate to meet the needs and interests of individuals and companies. To find out more about membership follow this link:

Judy Conner, Director of Communications at Foresight Nanotech Institute, is the editor of the Foresight Nanotech Institute Weekly News Digest. If you would like to submit a news item or contact her with comments about the news digest, please send an email to: editor@foresight.org.

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