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10/10/2007 11:50:06 AM
Nanotechnology prizes go to Leigh, Stoddart, Freitas, Ou

Foresight Nanotech Institute, the leading think tank and public interest organization focused on nanotechnology, awarded prizes to leaders in research, communication and study in the field of nanotechnology at the Productive Nanosystems Conference, being held today in Arlington, Virginia. These prizes are conferred on individuals whose work in research, communication and study are moving our society towards the ultimate goal of atomically-precise manufacturing.

The 2007 Foresight Institute Feynman Prizes, named in honor of pioneer physicist Richard Feynman, are given in two categories, one for experimental work and the other for theory in advances in nanotechnology. This year the Theory Prize was won by David Leigh of University of Edinburgh, UK, and the Experimental Prize went to Fraser Stoddart of UCLA.

The Foresight Prize in Communication was presented to nanotechnology author and theorist Robert A Freitas Jr. A Rice University graduate student, Fung-Suong Ou, received the Distinguished Student Prize.

“This year’s winning research illustrates the great strides toward productive nanosystems now taking place throughout the world,” said Dr. Pearl Chin, President of Foresight Nanotech Institute. “The goal of manufacturing with atomic precision advances daily, and we can expect even faster progress building on the work being honored today.”

Foresight Institute Feynman Prizes – Experimental and Theory

Winning in the Experimental category for 2007 is J. Fraser Stoddart, Fred Kavli Professor of NanoSystems Sciences, UCLA, and former Director of the California NanoSystems Institute, who has pioneered the synthesis and assembly of unique active molecular machines for manufacturing into practical nanoscale devices. His many accomplishments in synthetic chemistry have produced functional molecular machines, in particular a ‘molecular muscle’ for the purposes of amplifying and harnessing molecular mechanical motions, that may ultimately lead to the construction of atomically-precise products through the use of molecular machine systems.

This year’s winner in the Theory category, David A. Leigh of University of Edinburgh, is the world’s foremost pioneer on the design and synthesis of artificial molecular motors and machines from first principles and one of the most dynamic and innovative chemists of his generation, focusing on the construction of molecular machine systems that function in the realm of Brownian motion. Leigh’s theoretical studies of synthetic molecular motors and machines contribute an important element toward the development of molecular machine systems capable of atomically-precise fabrication.

Foresight Institute Prize in Communication

The 2007 Communication prizewinner — Robert A. Freitas Jr., a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Molecular Manufacturing — is best known for Nanomedicine, the definitive book on the medical applications of molecular nanotechnology and available in its entirety at http://www.nanomedicine.com; and Kinematic Self-Replicating Machines, the foundational description of system architectures for molecular nanotechnology, available at http://www.molecularassembler.com. With almost 100 technical papers, book chapters, or popular articles he is one of the most prolific authors in the field of molecular nanotechnology.

Foresight Institute Distinguished Student Prize

Fung Suong Ou is a Ph.D. candidate now at Rice University who has demonstrated that it is possible to use a combinatorial approach to build nanowires from dissimilar components. Specifically, he has fabricated multi-segmented one-dimensional hybrid structures composed of carbon nanotubes and metal nanowires.

Foresight Nanotech Institute is the leading public interest organization in nanotechnology. Foresight was founded in 1986 to promote and accelerate the development of nanotechnology that is good for people and the planet through public education, research prizes, public policy advocacy and programs promoting beneficial nanotechnology. Scientists, academics, engineers, business, governments and the public turn to Foresight for balanced, accurate, and timely information provided through its publications, public policy activities, roadmaps, prizes, and conferences.

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