Little robots make big differences

Dennis Gosnell

Assistant Editor


It has been said that the small things in life are what make life worth living; Larry Johnson, Engineering Major, explained just how far technology has come in creating very small things to make life better.


What exactly is Nanotechnology?

Nanotechnology can be described as the study in the manipulation of properties and functions of materials on an atomic level. These devices are on a scale smaller than 100 nanometers.


Richard Feynman, a theoretical physicist who lived from 1918 to 1988, helped revolutionize the scientific community with his work in the field and development of nanotechnology.

“The behavior of things on a small scale is so fantastic, so wonderfully different than anything that behaves on a large scale. You can say, ‘electrons act like waves’…‘they act like particles’…‘they act like a kind of fog around a nucleus’ – no, they don’t, exactly,” Feynman was quoted as saying in “No Ordinary Genius: The Illustrated Richard Feynman.”


Nano Technology can affect everything.

The study of nanotechnology has a hand in all technologies from medical to military and from energy and product production to information technology.


“The world is quickly changing in terms of scientific discovery,” Johnson said. With the applications of nanotechnology in such areas as cell phones, they become so much more than just phones and take the place of multiple devices.  They are computers, information resources, portable libraries, and MP3 players.


In medical science, nanotechnology is being used to clear arteries and to identify and destroy cancer cells.


In product production, clothes are being synthesized to be water resistant, batteries are being created that will last more than 50 years and companies are experimenting with clothing that produce and recharge Bluetooth enabled devices.

Other companies are creating super-conducting materials that use natural forces such as wind that makes a flag move and create and transfer energy to other sources.


“Imagine being able to put the entire series of the Encyclopedia Britannica on a disk the size of the tip of a pen. We are not that far away from being able to do that,” Johnson said.


According to Johnson, with the world almost literally at our fingertips, there does not seem to be any place that humans could not visit or create.




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