Foresight Nanotech Institute Logo

« Go Back

You are viewing
Foresight Archives

Image of nano
Home > Resources > Publications > Foresight Publications > Weekly News Digest

Advances in DNA nanotechnology point to atomically precise manufacturing

Foresight Update 26.05—July 30, 2013
ISSN 1078-9731

Nanotech News

Discuss these news stories at

In this issue:

DNA nanotechnology positions components to optimize single-molecule fluorescence

Recently we noted an extensive review of the use of DNA scaffolds to orient molecules for molecular studies, as this capability could lead to organizing functional components for atomically precise manufacturing (APM). An excellent example of this capability of DNA scaffolds, published last year in Science [abstract] has been made available for open access …

Nanotechnology, optical lithography, and petabyte data storage media

Foresight’s interest is in advancing nanotechnology to the point of developing high-throughput atomically precise manufacturing, but it is worth noting occasionally the potential applications of nanoscale technologies that achieve less than atomic precision. These two examples point toward several-orders-of-magnitude improvement in data storage technology …

Recent highlights and discussions of APM concepts

The release of Eric Drexler’s new book Radical Abundance has sparked a resurgence of discussion about nanotechnology and the global future.

Last month, Nanowerk reprinted Drexler’s blog write-up entitled The Physical Basis of High-Throughput Atomically Precise Manufacturing, a reader-friendly overview highlighting parallels between molecular manufacturing and conventional chemistry and manufacturing. …

Reviews of DNA nanotechnology-atomically precise microscale objects

Recently we noted the use of DNA nanotechnology to build a solar energy antenna as another example of progress in the modular molecular composite nanosystems (MMCNs) approach to developing atomically precise manufacturing. Structural DNA nanotechnology is currently the only way we have to manufacture large (million-atom, 100-nm-scale) arbitrarily complex atomically precise objects, so it plays a central role in the MMCN approach. Two very useful recent overviews of structural DNA nanotechnology have been made freely available on the web. …

Foresight Advisor Doug Engelbart, 1925-2013, will be greatly missed

It is with great sadness that Foresight acknowledges the passing of Foresight Advisor Doug Engelbart, Ph.D. (1925-2013), a visionary technologist whose early inventions led to today’s Information Revolution. …

DNA nanotechnology builds solar energy antenna

The modular molecular composite nanosystems (MMCNs) approach to developing atomically precise manufacturing, described in the 2007 Technology Roadmap for Productive Nanosystems, proposes using DNA scaffolds to organize smaller functional components to execute complex tasks. In another demonstration of the functional utility of DNA scaffolds, scientists in Sweden have used DNA scaffolds to position dye molecules to increases the efficiency of artificial photosynthesis. …

—Nanodot posts by James Lewis and Stephanie C.

Foresight Events and News

Conference Videos Available on Vimeo

Videos of approximately half of the talks given at the 2013 Foresight Technical Conference: Illuminating Atomic Precision, held January 11-13, 2013 in Palo Alto, CA are available on Vimeo. (All postings are with the speaker's consent only. Some of the presentations contained confidential information and will not be posted.)

2013 Foresight Institute Prize Nominations Are Open

Nominations for the 2013 Foresight Institute Feynman Prizes: Experimental and Theory are due on September 30, 2013, and for the 2013 Foresight Institute Distinguished Student Award are due on October 31, 2013. More information and details for nominating yourself or someone else can be found at


The next Foresight Conference will be held February 7-9, 2014, at the Crowne Plaza Cabana Hotel, Palo Alto, CA USA. More information will be available soon.

Foresight Lectures

7th Annual SAP CEO Summit
Oct. 22-23, 2013 New York City
Christine Peterson will speak on nanotechnology and synthetic biology as part of a plenary panel on Innovation Futures, addressing how these fields are opening up new areas of commercial innovation, and how governments and corporations should respond.

About the Foresight Institute
Foreseeing Future Technologies

Advancements in technologies such as nanotech, robotics, and biotech are promising to make major differences in our lives in the not-too-distant future, as the Industrial Revolution did to the agrarian world — to do for the physical world what the computer and Internet have done to the world of information.

Since 1986, the Foresight Institute has been in the forefront of a worldwide community of visionaries who work to help shape these possibilities into a positive, beneficial reality.

If you would like to help us understand the potential of these technologies, and influence their direction, please consider becoming a member of the Foresight community. With your support, Foresight will continue to educate the general public on these technologies and what they will mean to our society.

The Foresight Institute is a non-profit, member-supported 501(c)(3) organization. We offer membership levels appropriate to meet the needs and interests of individuals and companies. Donations are tax deductible.

For information membership go to:

To join Foresight go to:

The Foresight Update is emailed monthly to approximately 10,000 subscribers in more than 100 countries throughout the world. If you would like to join our mailing list and receive the Update, go to:

To view past issues of the Foresight Update go to the following links: Past issues:
Earlier issues are here.

To get involved and for further information about Foresight contact or contact our President, Paul Melnyk at

Foresight Institute
PO Box 61058
Palo Alto, CA 94306 USA
tel +1 650 289.0860
fax +1 650.289.0863

If you were forwarded this email from a friend and would like to subscribe yourself, please follow this link and sign up for our free electronic membership.

Thank you!

Home Page


Foresight Programs


Home About Foresight Blog News & Events Roadmap About Nanotechnology Resources Facebook Contact Privacy Policy

Foresight materials on the Web are ©1986–2019 Foresight Institute. All rights reserved. Legal Notices.

Web site developed by Stephan Spencer and Netconcepts; maintained by James B. Lewis Enterprises.