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Val's Nanotech discussion thread


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#1 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 05:03 AM


Alright, in order to hopefully prompt some actual discussion about Nanotechnology, let me bring a few links to your attention.

First, H+ has a new article on Molecular Assembly: http://hplusmagazine...-nanostructures

[quote]Recently, a team led by Dr. Ting Xu at the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory made an important advance towards this nanotechnology goal. They found a simple and yet powerful way to induce nanoparticles to assemble themselves into complex arrays. By adding specific types of small molecules to mixtures of nanoparticles and polymers, Dr. Xu's group directed the self-assembly of the nanoparticles into arrays of one, two and three dimensions with no chemical modification of either the nanoparticles or the block copolymers. In addition, they found that the application of external stimuli – light and/or heat – can be used to further direct the assemblies of nanoparticles for even finer and more complex structural details.[/quote]

Next, Next Big Future also made an interesting post: http://nextbigfuture...-in-carbon.html

[quote]“While batteries have large storage capacity, they take a long time to charge; while electrostatic capacitors can charge quickly but typically have limited capacity. However, supercapacitors/electrochemical capacitors incorporate the advantages of both,” Bandaru said.

Defects on nanotubes create additional charge sites enhancing the stored charge. The researchers have also discovered methods which could increase or decrease the charge associated with the defects by bombarding the CNTs with argon or hydrogen.

Carbon nanotubes could serve as supercapacitor electrodes with enhanced charge and energy storage capacity.[/quote]

Additionally, a first generation CN semi-conductor usable in flexible OLED displays: http://nextbigfuture...usable-for.html

[quote]The USC researchers make large arrays of carbon nanotube transistors using solution-processing techniques at room temperature. They start by placing a silicon wafer in a chemical bath to coat its surface with a nanotube-attracting chemical, then rinse off the residue. The treated wafer is then immersed in a solution of semiconducting carbon nanotubes, which are attracted to its surface. The wafer, now coated with a carpet of nanotubes, is rinsed clean again. To make transistors from this tangled mess, the researchers put down metal electrodes at selected locations. The electrodes define where each transistor is and carry electrons into and out of the nanotubes that lie between them. Areas of silicon underlying each device act as the transistors' gates. So far, they've built a prototype device on a four-inch silicon wafer and used it to control a simple organic light-emitting diode display.

The USC researchers are working to build a truly integrated organic LED display that is flexible and transparent.[/quote]

On top of this, we now can make precise circuit arrays of nanotubes by using a DNA scaffold to position CNs: http://nextbigfuture...tubes-into.html

[quote]A central challenge in nanotechnology is the parallel fabrication of complex geometries for nanodevices. Here we report a general method for arranging single-walled carbon nanotubes in two dimensions using DNA origami—a technique in which a long single strand of DNA is folded into a predetermined shape. We synthesize rectangular origami templates (75 nm 95 nm) that display two lines of single-stranded DNA 'hooks' in a cross pattern with 6 nm resolution. The perpendicular lines of hooks serve as sequence-specific binding sites for two types of nanotubes, each functionalized non-covalently with a distinct DNA linker molecule. The hook-binding domain of each linker is protected to ensure efficient hybridization. When origami templates and DNA-functionalized nanotubes are mixed, strand displacement-mediated deprotection and binding aligns the nanotubes into cross-junctions. Of several cross-junctions synthesized by this method, one demonstrated stable field-effect transistor-like behaviour. In such organizations of electronic components, DNA origami serves as a programmable nanobreadboard; thus, DNA origami may allow the rapid prototyping of complex nanotube-based structures.[/quote]

Now add in reliable manufacturing of graphene in a manner similar to the creation of silicon circuits: http://www.nanowerk....ewsid=13456.php

[quote]Inspired by previous work in which scientists grew graphene on copper foil, the team grew the graphene directly onto silicon wafers coated with a special evaporated copper film. They then cut the graphene films into their desired shapes using such standard methods as photolithography, and removed the underlying copper with a chemical solution. What was left was a graphene film that draped down over the silicon wafer with little defect.[/quote]

And of course the fact that the shuttle just tested a CN based RAM module on the shuttle...



So... what does all this mean?

In my opinion, I think it means we'll have a robust nanotube based computer within five years. A sort of in between hybrid of current silicon technology and a full CN based nanocomputer.

So, what are your opinions?
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#2 niner

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 05:27 AM

Some very cool reports. My first thought is that this is a picture of what's really happening in nanotech, and none of it is Drexlerian. No assemblers here, and none likely any time soon. The kinds of technologies described here will bear great fruit. It will be hard for carbon nanotube supercaps to compete with the price/performance of EEStore's Barium Titanate, I'd think.

#3 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 06:30 AM

Some very cool reports. My first thought is that this is a picture of what's really happening in nanotech, and none of it is Drexlerian. No assemblers here, and none likely any time soon. The kinds of technologies described here will bear great fruit. It will be hard for carbon nanotube supercaps to compete with the price/performance of EEStore's Barium Titanate, I'd think.



For large scale, I would tend to agree, but there are numerous uses for nanoscale ultracapacitance as well.

Current circuits are broken into VLSI and separate motherboards for more reasons than just standardized form factors. The boards have to be a certain size to allow the non-miniaturized components to be mounted. The capacitors and coils needed for power regulation haven't shrunk much in fifty years. Nano capacitors could allow much lower voltages to be used in circuits, with a possible corresponding shrinking of the entire circuit, including boards.

All of which could mean the production of a computer as powerful as a current desktop, complete with CPU, video processor, audio processor, a terabyte of non-volatile CNRam, and a 10 terabyte SSD, using a few hundred nanotube "antennas" for wireless connectivity to the net, all built into pair of glasses with curved OLED displays and powered by a single current sized watch battery using the EEstor technology. Toss in that project natal control interface via an integrated CCD in the bridge of the glasses and you have a fully wearable computer.

EEStor appears to primarily be a storage device for power. The CN Ucaps would be more useful in nanocircuits themselves to replace current capacitors.

The simple version - Nano UCaps could make entire electronic devices possible on a single chip with no boards required, and allow them to run for far longer on smaller batteries.

Also, the replicators are being worked on as well, but nanoelectronics is a rather important prerequisite to nanofabrication. Not only do we have to know how to build on the atomic scale en mass, but it will be required as control for the assemblers.

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#4 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 04:08 PM

Also, by being able to miniaturize the complete computer into one ultra small set of chips, you might even find this to be the computer of the next decade:

http://www.hplusmaga...s-contact-lense

Fiction now meets reality with prototype contact lenses developed by Babak Parviz at the University of Washington, in Seattle. Dr. Parviz’s prototype lenses can be used as biosensors to display body chemistry or as a heads up display (HUD). Powered by radio waves and 330 microwatts of power from a loop antenna that picks up power beamed from nearby radio sources, future versions will also be able to harvest power from a cell phone.


In the short range you will likely see this connected via bluetooth to your computer/phone/personal VR device. If they can add ccds to the unit it might even have such capabilities as IR and lowlight, as well as vision tracking for AR applications.

#5 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 05:35 AM

And New Scientist gives a nice summary of the current state of carbon electronics:
http://www.newscient...ure.html?page=2

of particular interest:

Pereira's group has shown that inducing a strain in the bonds between carbon atoms generates ribbon-like semiconductor behaviour in the strained regions (Physical Review Letters, vol 103, p 046801). "You can generate a ribbon without having to cut the ribbon," Pereira says. One way of doing this is to drape the graphene over a pre-shaped structure. The strain induced at each curve and fold will give the sheet a variety of electronic properties. Lay it over an etched channel, for instance, and the part of the graphene that lies along the bottom of the channel will behave as if it is an isolated nanoribbon.

This has two advantages over both silicon-based semiconductors and graphene nanoribbons. First, it is highly adaptable. In silicon, the band gap is created by "doping" a silicon crystal with various impurities, but once set it is fixed. A nanoribbon, once cut, also has fixed properties. But a slight change in the twist or the angle of pull of a graphene sheet gives it a completely different set of properties.

The second advantage is simple: the process is entirely reversible. Remove the strain and the graphene sheet returns to its normal conducting self. The implication of this discovery, Pereira says, is that it might be possible to manufacture all-graphene electronics, with every component created by carefully orchestrated strain on a region of the graphene sheet.


So in essence, not only could Graphene make complete nanoscale computers possible, but with the addition of methods to induce strains where desired, could even create morphable computers with variable architecture. That would allow a graphene FPGA (Feild Programable Gate Array, aka a rewritable VLSI chip) to be made for rapid chip protoyping and possibly even CPUs which could be upgraded via software...

Think about that.

A CPU that could be designed to rewire itself via software. Can we say a substrate for a recursively improving algorithm to create hyper efficient CPUs?

Evolvable Chips... Think AI research could have any use for those????
:) :) :) :) :)


Not to mention, such a chip would be perfect for a neural net, able to rewrite itself as needed to create new interconnects.

#6 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 09:07 AM

And now.... Drum roll please


http://nextbigfuture...m-graphene.html

Graphene has now been proven to not only be usable in current chip manufacturing methods, but to be usable to make transistors as well as conductors.

Fujitsu Laboratories developed novel technology that allows for graphene to be formed on insulating film substrate via CVD at the low fabrication-temperature of 650°C, enabling graphene-based transistors to be directly formed on the entire surface of substrates. Although the test substrate employed was a 75-mm silicon substrate (wafer) with oxide film, the new technique is applicable to larger 300-mm wafers as well.


So, you may ask, what does this mean?

It means minimal retooling of existing chip factory tools to be able to use graphene in current chip production lines.

Which means that in probably just a year or two a lot of current chip making plans are going to be radically altered as chip makers begin to switch to graphene/silicon chips.

Reason? Graphene has enormously better conductivity than copper, and as shown in the article, graphene can directly replace copper in the current chip construction.

Which means minimal need to redesign existing chip blueprints to use graphene, which will allow chips not only to use far less power, but to run at much faster clock speeds.

The GHz wars are about to heat up again, and it's likely we're going to see 8 and 10ghz chips using multiprocessor core technology. Maybe higher.

Imagine, 100 cores running at 10GHz using a fraction of the power a current quad core uses.

Any of you other computer techies out there wanting to speculate?

#7 Reno

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 09:51 PM

So, you may ask, what does this mean?It means minimal retooling of existing chip factory tools to be able to use graphene in current chip production lines.Which means that in probably just a year or two a lot of current chip making plans are going to be radically altered as chip makers begin to switch to graphene/silicon chips.Reason? Graphene has enormously better conductivity than copper, and as shown in the article, graphene can directly replace copper in the current chip construction.Which means minimal need to redesign existing chip blueprints to use graphene, which will allow chips not only to use far less power, but to run at much faster clock speeds.The GHz wars are about to heat up again, and it's likely we're going to see 8 and 10ghz chips using multiprocessor core technology. Maybe higher.Imagine, 100 cores running at 10GHz using a fraction of the power a current quad core uses.Any of you other computer techies out there wanting to speculate?


I agree. It's also been said that because of it's unique surface area that it is an extremely good medium for spintronics. Expect to see computers speeds and hard drive capacities increased by several powers.

#8 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 03:02 AM

And how about this for Sci-Fi concepts?

http://nextbigfuture...rators-and.html

The Chip-Scale High Energy Atomic Beams program will develop chip-scale high-energy atomic beam technology by developing high efficiency radio frequency (RF) accelerators, either linear or circular, that can achieve energies of protons and other ions up to a few mega electron volts (MeV). Chip-scale integration offers precise, micro actuators and high electric field generation at modest power levels that will enable several order of magnitude decreases in the volume needed to accelerate the ions. Furthermore, thermal isolation techniques will enable high efficiency beam to power converters, perhaps making chipscale self-sustained fusion possible.



Everyone follow that? No?

Okay in simple terms.

Fusion reactor on a chip. A infinite power supply running on self sustaining fusion, usable in hand held devices.

Personally I think BLP or kasimir devices may arrive sooner, and negate the need to for this, but this looks to possibly be useful items with high power requirements.

Like say, that exoskeleton that lets you leap tall buildings with a single bound? (yes, this is very like that Arc Generator from Ironman the movie)

#9 niner

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 03:39 AM

The Chip-Scale High Energy Atomic Beams program will develop chip-scale high-energy atomic beam technology by developing high efficiency radio frequency (RF) accelerators, either linear or circular, that can achieve energies of protons and other ions up to a few mega electron volts (MeV). Chip-scale integration offers precise, micro actuators and high electric field generation at modest power levels that will enable several order of magnitude decreases in the volume needed to accelerate the ions. Furthermore, thermal isolation techniques will enable high efficiency beam to power converters, perhaps making chipscale self-sustained fusion possible.

Well, I have to question this. If we can't manage to do hot fusion without a couple hundred lasers and a lot of other high-dollar physics, how can we achieve enough fusion at a couple MeV to generate meaningful power? I can believe that they will do a micro particle accelerator on a chip, but I think NBF just went off the rails with the fusion idea. I hope I'm wrong here, because I love technological weirdness as much as the next Singularitarian...

Edit: Well, there ya go. I read the article. Maybe this stuff will work after all. Jeeze. What'll they thinka next?

Edited by niner, 07 December 2009 - 03:43 AM.


#10 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 05:13 AM

Well, I have to question this. If we can't manage to do hot fusion without a couple hundred lasers and a lot of other high-dollar physics, how can we achieve enough fusion at a couple MeV to generate meaningful power? I can believe that they will do a micro particle accelerator on a chip, but I think NBF just went off the rails with the fusion idea. I hope I'm wrong here, because I love technological weirdness as much as the next Singularitarian...

Edit: Well, there ya go. I read the article. Maybe this stuff will work after all. Jeeze. What'll they thinka next?


It tis interesting non?

So, we have BLP, Dense Plasma Fusion, LENR, Kasimir Well devices, and now fusion chips, not to mention rapid improvements in solar cells, as well as smaller safer reactors for conventional nuclear power.

Tell me again about an Olduvi cliff and why I should be worried about fossil fuel supplies????

as for how this applies to nanotech? Well, POWERING nanotech has always been a favorite problem the anti-nano tech crowd likes to use to claim it's "impossibility"

and yet, here is yet one more "small scale" power device to meet that need.

#11 niner

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 05:29 AM

Tell me again about an Olduvi cliff and why I should be worried about fossil fuel supplies????

Exactly. Long term, anyway. I'm still a little nervous about the next ten years or so. My expectation is that cheap solar cells will really start coming on soon, and BLP will finally make a splash several years out. That one should be pretty big, and will probably move markets and attitudes a lot. I'm also looking for an electric storage breakthrough, presumably cheap barium titanate supercaps, coming any year now. That will totally alter ground transport permanently. Fortunately the car makers all know what's coming, and they all have electrics in the works. Lots of things happening at once here. Along with fossil fuel supplies not being a problem, I don't think we need to worry about greenhouse gas caps destroying humankind.

#12 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 03:54 AM

Tell me again about an Olduvi cliff and why I should be worried about fossil fuel supplies????

Exactly. Long term, anyway. I'm still a little nervous about the next ten years or so. My expectation is that cheap solar cells will really start coming on soon, and BLP will finally make a splash several years out. That one should be pretty big, and will probably move markets and attitudes a lot. I'm also looking for an electric storage breakthrough, presumably cheap barium titanate supercaps, coming any year now. That will totally alter ground transport permanently. Fortunately the car makers all know what's coming, and they all have electrics in the works. Lots of things happening at once here. Along with fossil fuel supplies not being a problem, I don't think we need to worry about greenhouse gas caps destroying humankind.



I was never worried about that to begin with Niner. But as I said in another thread, band-aids are not a solution. It is just a feel-good measure that soothes the public without actually accomplishing a damn thing.

#13 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 04:10 AM

And to get back on topic: http://nextbigfuture...ransistors.html

In recent years, researchers have begun to look at block copolymers, an organic material that is compatible with conventional semiconductor manufacturing processes, because a thin film of it, under the right conditions, can self-assemble into regular arrays of holes on the order of 20nm or smaller in diameter. This tiny, self-assembled swiss cheese of block copolymer can act as a stencil for creating electrical contacts to very small semiconductor devices.

Previous attempts at using block polymers have fallen short because the self-assembled holes were not aligned to existing electrical features on the semiconductor wafer. Now, the SRC-sponsored work by researchers from Stanford University and TSMC has produced the industry’s first functional devices and circuits that employ diblock copolymer patterning for sub-22nm CMOS technologies on a full wafer scale.

“We believe this development will help to bring self-assembly closer to broad application in the semiconductor industry and will help increase the use of nanotechnology for advancements in electronics for years to come,” said H.-S. Philip Wong, a professor of Electrical Engineering at Stanford University.



Translation? Yet another roadblock to nanocomputers has been overcome. the precise positioning of electronic components on a silicon wafer. i.e. we'll be progressing from graphene hybird chips directly into CN based ones once they have this commercialized. By the end of the decade we could have the first true nanocomputers if things keep going so well.



Oh, and speaking of BLP: http://nextbigfuture...-2010-2013.html

They are now indicating that they will have continuous run prototypes in 2010. This is a delay from previous talk about a commercial system in 2009. However, if they make their continuous run prototypes with 50KW to 75KW of power available for independent testing in 2010 that would go a long way to reducing the controversy surround Blacklight Power. Pilot plants at the megawatt level are planned for 2011-2013.

This might be too late for some small bets made at this site that commercial power would be generated by the end of 2010, which is a trivial issue.

The main question is if Blacklight Power will be prove that it has a revolutionary new power source with costs of about $1500 per Kilowatt of capital cost and generation cost of one cent per kilowatt hour onsite. The power would also be non-polluting.


While I was hoping the pilot plants would be running a bit sooner than this, it's still an indication of progress. Getting more independent verifications would help a lot. Any chemists here willing to run some experiments based on BLP's published data?

#14 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 12:45 PM

Here you go Niner, possible ultra-cheap, ultra-capacitance batteries

http://nextbigfuture...er-instant.html

Simply coating a sheet of paper with ink made of carbon nanotubes and silver nanowires makes a highly conductive storage device, said Yi Cui, assistant professor of materials science and engineering.

"Society really needs a low-cost, high-performance energy storage device, such as batteries and simple supercapacitors," he said.

"This technology has potential to be commercialized within a short time," said Peidong Yang, professor of chemistry at the University of California-Berkeley. "I don't think it will be limited to just energy storage devices," he said. "This is potentially a very nice, low-cost, flexible electrode for any electrical device."

* * * * *

"These nanomaterials are special," Cui said. "They're a one-dimensional structure with very small diameters." The small diameter helps the nanomaterial ink stick strongly to the fibrous paper, making the battery and supercapacitor very durable. The paper supercapacitor may last through 40,000 charge-discharge cycles – at least an order of magnitude more than lithium batteries. The nanomaterials also make ideal conductors because they move electricity along much more efficiently than ordinary conductors, Cui said.


And there you have it. ultra-cheap, flexible, makes use of readily available technology, and can be scaled to just about any size.

Batteries to power that printed on paper OLED display Tony the Tiger dances across on your cereal box.

Or, how about battery for your home, which charges during low use times, and discharges during high use times to lower your power bill. How about a shirt with a battery lining to power your Ipod for days at a time? Give it a high yield thermocoupler and it charges when you toss it in the dryer, or solar cells across your shoulders embedded in the cloth.

Feel free to add your own ideas!

#15 Kutta

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 03:40 PM

Hey Val, I just saw this BLP thing you mentioned for the first time. I've heard totally nothing about it previously and upon skimming wiki and some other articles I was very sceptic about this stuff. Now that I've read a bit more of their material it seems interesting, but still very very bold. Could you tell me a bit more about it?

Tha classcal physics GUT is about the wildest part of it. Anyway, if it turns out to be really right I have no objections.

Edited by Kutta, 09 December 2009 - 03:46 PM.


#16 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 01:15 AM

Hey Val, I just saw this BLP thing you mentioned for the first time. I've heard totally nothing about it previously and upon skimming wiki and some other articles I was very sceptic about this stuff. Now that I've read a bit more of their material it seems interesting, but still very very bold. Could you tell me a bit more about it?

Tha classcal physics GUT is about the wildest part of it. Anyway, if it turns out to be really right I have no objections.



I have little to say about Mill's GUT, since I don't understand it completely myself. However, if one looks into history, you will find that James Clerk Maxwell's original "laws" were far more complex than the gutted version used today. The original 20 laws were complex and used Quarternon notation, a 4D mathematical system, to describe the interaction of forces in 4d space. After Maxwell's death Heaviside removed all mention of 4D geometry from the work and replaced it with vectors, a far simpler system, due primarily to his belief that Maxwell's 4d equations were mystic mumbo jumbo because only 3 dimensions existed. Einstien hadn't come around yet to confirm 4D space, but sadly by the time he had, the oversimplified Maxwell's equations were the only ones publicly known. It wasn't until a few copies of Maxwell' original edition became available that it became obvious that his work had been modified.

What this means is that modern physics is based on an oversimplified understanding of Maxwell's equations, one based on eliminating 4D interactions, and thus only approximating the accuracy of Maxwell's original work.

According to Mills, if Maxwells original equations are used, then classical newtonian physics and Maxwell's work enable a complete GUT able to explain interactions from a subatomic level up to universal. Not being a mathematician, I can't follow the complete theory, but based on the fact that his theories seem to be working, I would say that they at least need to be looked into seriously.

What BLP does is use a catalytic agent to force a hydrogen atom to release energy and go into a lower energy state than it is found in nature. This "fractional" ground state is termed a Hydrino. Most Physicists refuse to admit that they are possible because the current mathematical equations do not allow a "lower than ground state" particle.

However, Rowan university and I believe at least one other group has confirmed the production of hydrogen exhibiting the properties of this lower energy state. They also confirmed the excessive heat and created the fuel themselves. All that is unconfirmed at this stage is the continuous looped reaction process.

The advantage that BLP has providing the looped system works is a heat engine that can be immediately retrofitted into any existing powerplant to replace the oil/coal/LP burner that it currently uses to produce heat to drive the steam turbine generators. This means that any powerplant could be converted in a short period to a clean, renewable power source, and since the system is scalable, we may see home sized and car sized systems as well.

I believe, based on reading elsewhere, that what is likely happening is that as Hydrogen is forced through the nanopores in the Rainey Nickel, that the atomic forces create a kasimir well effect, forcing the electron into a lower orbit and releasing that energy as a burst of heat.

#17 niner

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 01:29 AM

I'll add one comment regarding Mills' theory, which I haven't looked at in any detail. On the basis of his theory, they have written software that computes the heat of formation of molecules. The results of these calculations have been compared to the best experimental values and to the results of very expensive quantum mechanical calculations. The Mills results are good. Scary good. I don't know how it performs on conformational energy differences, which are more interesting to pharmaceutical chemists, but the results that I've seen would suggest that they have something interesting there. The thing about the Mills method is that instead of taking hours like the older QM methods might, it takes seconds or maybe even milliseconds.

#18 Kutta

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 06:32 AM

Hmm, as of now that I'm reading your replies I have read a not exactly small amount of text from BLP's homepage plus the homepge of Millsian (the mentioned molecular dynamics software) plus external articles plus also the casimir hypothesis of Jan Naudit. With my undergrad economist math level I'm not either in a position to evaluate all the theoretical framework even though I did skim through all of Mills' vast pdf's concerning the theory. It could work or not; if the claims are true that atom and ion properties calculated by Mills' theory are so precise, e.g. it's not rigged, then it ought to be investigated more closely by a larger number of people.

pro BLP:

- At least one academic else than Mills entertained the idea of subground hydrogen state; this is Jan Naudit.
- BLP turned out to be more long lived than free energy conspiracy theories.
- Easily verifiable claims that Mills' molecular dynamics computation is extremely precise and fast.
- Verification by Rowan university. Unless tests were completely rigged it's plausible that Rowan really did observe some exotic chemical reaction.
- High amount of support from Venture Capitalists.
- Business contracts with two small energy companies.
- Highly confident and reassuring claims and schedules by Mills about prototype reactors and commercial power plants, which either suggests an elaborate endgame of a great scam or Mills genuine trust in the BLP and it's validity.

contra BLP

- Yet, Naudit's explanation is based on entirely different mechanisms.
- Mills' GUT is exceedingly bold and is applied by Mills to everything from protons to the expansion of the universe. This combined with Mills' low citation ratings and his rejection by mainstream ceteris paribus gives the impression of a crackpot.
- Venture Capitalists are known to have fallen for much bigger frauds and lose much more money.
- Rowan unniversity is not entirely independent, and also a small fish. More verification is needed. If the BLP process is that easily reproducable it should create a lot more buzz in the next one or two years; if BLP failed to do so it would be a considerable evidence against it.

Edited by Kutta, 10 December 2009 - 06:33 AM.


#19 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 11 December 2009 - 05:51 AM

Those are valid points, but sadly it's a wait and see game at this point. The possibilites are rather exciting though.

On further towards that economy of abundance, and that ridiculously implausible thing called the Singularity XPPPPPPPPPP

We have some more news on the electronics front towards cheap, disposable, flexible, and ever more versatile, PRINTED ELECTRONICS!

From Next Big Future! http://nextbigfuture...or-printed.html

Redesign Electronics for Printed Electronics
Printed Electronics World: The first cars looked like horse drawn carriages - suboptimal and using the design rules of the past. So it is with most printed electronics today.


The irony of the integrated circuit - the silicon chip - is that it integrates so little. It cannot incorporate a loudspeaker, microphone, push button or a reasonable battery or solar cell for example, because these are too big and silicon chips have to be small for viability. Large silicon chips are prohibitively expensive.

Printed electronics is very different. It can integrate all these things.

Printed inductance is very feeble - no ferrite cores or multiple turns on top of each other yet - but many companies already print even high power resistors on the desired flexible, low cost substrates, some acting as heaters for eg thermochromic displays.


Printed Supercapacitors and Solar Cells
ACREO prints supercapacitors as gate dielectrics in its transistors, indeed, flexible supercabatteries less than one millimeter thick were launched this year by Nanotecture. Dyesol dye-sensitized solar cells, have achieved record efficiencies of 12.3%. They have led to Dyesol's CEGS technology: Combining Electricity Generation and Storage. This is a promising way of integrating a dye solar cell with a supercapacitor which could be a potential spin-out from Dyesol. Plastic Electronics GmbH is creating a variety of printed devices relying on capacitive effects from smart shelves to thumb controls.


Printed Matermaterials and Memcapacitors

Printed metamaterial components are coming along. What will we be able to do with the planned memcapacitors derived from memristors? Memory that takes no power is a possibility




Integration and Large toolkits

Bluespark printed manganese dioxide zinc battery supporting integral antenna and interconnects.

Infinite Power Solutions sells its laminar batteries with energy harvesting interfaces that will increasingly be made in one process, providing near loss-less energy storage, highly efficient power management electronics, and regulated output voltage—all in a miniaturized footprint.

Three Dimensional
New printed electronics increasingly consists of components printed on top and alongside each other, the discrete component becoming a thing of the past. This can lead to capacitive coupling.

Large Area not a Problem
Stretchability, edible electronics, transparent and tightly rollable electronics and other totally new paradigms completely change the design rules.

An unrolled printed photovoltaic or piezoelectric power source can be huge without being a problem as can the unrollable displays, keyboards etc printed at the same time. Printed electronics on a poster, billboard or even point of sale display has large area available so such things as transistor feature size or photovoltaic efficiency are not necessarily a primary issue if the materials are affordable.


Now. Think about this.


What do we see coming from this?

Solar panel wallpaper?
The trite but oh so plausible animated cereal boxes?
Every wall in your house video displays?


Or how about this. Wraparound displays/sunglasses integrated with your cellphone shirt/VR unit/Portable networking device, powered by your solar panel/ultracap-battery pants? Complete with color change/video display options? And lets not forget your ultraslick supercool Nike NEONS, the shoe with neon pinstripes!

Printing as the new manufacturing method will rapidly bootstrap us towards an economy of abundance. Mix this with the Replicating Rapidprototyper, RepRap, and we are well on the way towards home manufacturing units.

Isn't sliding down a exponentially steeper slope towards the Singularity fun? ;) :|?

#20 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 11 December 2009 - 06:06 AM

and heres something on BCI:

http://gizmodo.com/5...-with-your-mind

By placing electrode grids inside patients' skulls, researchers at the Mayo Clinic have created a way for people to type words using only their brainwaves. It's a major breakthrough for brain-computer interface research.

The experiments were undertaken on patients who already had electrodes in their brain to monitor epilepsy. Readings were taken via electrocorticography (ECoG), as the subjects were shown a grid of letters and numbers. As each symbol was illuminated, the patient was told to focus on the letter or number, and data was recorded. Once this calibration data was taken, the patients would think of a letter or number, and their brain waves would be appropriately translated to the screen. The theory is that this technique will allow people to communicate and type far more easily when they suffer from Lou Gehrig's disease, MS, or paralysis.


Considering the advances being made in electronics on silk for bio use (i.e. the underskin video tattoo) I can see this developing. Surface application, Lift the skull, line it with a sensor grid, replace it. No actual brain invasion needed.

I would still rather see how scalpworn nets work first, but I can definitely see this for use with cybernetic prosthetics. So those wings and tail may not be so far off XDDDDDDD

#21 niner

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Posted 11 December 2009 - 06:41 AM

- Easily verifiable claims that Mills' molecular dynamics computation is extremely precise and fast.

I read one of Mills' papers on the macromolecular application, and it is not so spectacular on torsional barriers. It's ok, but a well-parameterized molecular mechanics force field would beat it. As implemented, I think that molecular mechanics code will beat it on speed for something like a protein in water calculation. Mills' software will supplement, but not supplant the rest of computational chemistry. There are some things that it does really well, like bond energy calculations on small molecules, and it looks like it can do a credible job with a large variety of molecules, whereas MM force fields only work on the small subset of important molecules, like proteins, for which they have been parameterized. I don't know if Mills does full structural optimizations. That would seem like a no-brainer, but in the macromolecular application, bond angles are parameterized. Maybe it's different in the small molecule app.

- Mills' GUT is exceedingly bold and is applied by Mills to everything from protons to the expansion of the universe. This combined with Mills' low citation ratings and his rejection by mainstream ceteris paribus gives the impression of a crackpot.

- Rowan unniversity is not entirely independent, and also a small fish. More verification is needed. If the BLP process is that easily reproducable it should create a lot more buzz in the next one or two years; if BLP failed to do so it would be a considerable evidence against it.

Mills looks like a crackpot because he is challenging the bedrock of chemistry and physics. I think that his crackpot status will change, and there are going to be lot of textbooks to be rewritten. He will make a ton of money and get the Nobel prize and all kinds of plaudits. It will be fun to watch. If you aren't a venture capitalist who's already in on it, I don't know how to make money off of this. Short coal companies, I suppose. But these things always take longer than you think they will. It might be a better approach to just buy the market, because cheap clean power is going to make everyone happy.

I agree that more verification would be nice. I think that Mills doesn't care if anyone believes it. He has enough funding and they are working furiously on power generators now. They have hired three different engineering firms to work on the design of the industrial scale generating units. Mills is part genius and part PT Barnum. His stuff is real, but he is quite a promoter too. I think that most of what he says is going to turn out to be right, at least on the practical side, but the timing may slip on some of it. I'm not so sure about the GUT. That might or might not work out.

People don't talk much about the chemistry side of his work. The development of hydrinos is for all intents and purposes like the discovery of a new element. And not a boring heavy element, either. A really interesting, highly stable light element with some properties that are like nothing else. This is going to lead to a lot of amazing new materials, and might have some interesting pharmaceutical applications.

This is all going to make a big mark on human history. It will be a different world because of what Mills has done. It's not an exaggeration to put him in the same category as Newton and Einstein, though it will take years to be apparent.

#22 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 01 January 2010 - 07:44 AM

From Metamodern, Drexler himself has commented on what I've been thinking for a few months now:


http://metamodern.co...nanotechnology/
http://metamodern.co...s-the-progress/
http://metamodern.co...anufacturing-1/
http://metamodern.co...uilding-blocks/
http://metamodern.co...D-feynman-1959/

This quote probably sums it all up the best:

The progress I have in mind centers on advances in atomically precise fabrication by chemical and biological means, and these advances now have reached a level that places the implementation of first-generation artificial APM systems within reach. These, however, also won’t resemble slick, large-scale, general-purpose HT-APM systems. Instead, they will support the implementation of more-capable second-generation APM systems that can support a fast design-build-test cycle and thereby enable a well-focused and well-organized develpment program to rapidly ascend a ladder of technologies leading to HT-APM.

Available technologies now enable the design and fabrication of intricate, atomically precise nanometer-scale objects made from a versatile engineering polymer, together with intricate, atomically precise, 100-nanometer scale frameworks that can be used to organize these objects to form larger 3D structures. These components can and have been designed to undergo spontaneous, atomically precise self assembly. Together, they provide an increasingly powerful means for organizing atomically precise structures of million-atom size, with the potential of incorporating an even wider range of functional components.


Did you catch that?

We now have the tools to make the tools that will build real nanotech. Let me clarify, Drexlarian style Mechanosynthesis is now at the stage of where feasibility has been proven, large scale 3d positional assembly has been proven, and the main problem left is an engineering challenge to design the first generation of positional manufacturing devices.

The system is basic. DNA programmed to structurally assemble latticeworks in 2D, Proteins to construct single dimensional "strings". But they offer all the potential needed to create atomically precise structures. Layered 2D sheets built into 3D structures, 1D strings connected side by side into 2D, then layered as well to make 3D.

And because it is based in DNA and proteins, it can do it in parallel in millions of iterations. Yes, it's liquid phase, yes it's limited. But it's the true beginning.

For comparison, I would say it's at the era of punchcard reading computers. And if it follows the same exponential curve that they did, doubling every two years or so, we may still have a few decades before it matures. But with the fact that the Internet allows instant dissemination of designs, sequences, and 3D models, I am not willing to bet it's going to take anywhere near that long.

The last year alone has seemed to have made as much progress in nanotech as the previous eight did. I can't even begin to make a mathematical or statistical measuring system, and it's certainly not going to be as carefully analyzed as a Kurzweil prediction, and I will almost certainly believe that the actual progress might have been more spread out and only being released in a free-er scientific era than the bush regime, but if we follow that 8 to 1 ratio, the next gen of assemblers might only be 46 days away, and gen 3 just 5 days later...

I don't think it will be anywhere near that rapid, but that is the thing with exponential curves. They can sneak up on you fast.

Considering we are already working on macroscale assemblers that use the exact same line joined to line, layer by layer designs in 3D Rapid Prototyping machines, once engineers begin seriously applying their skills... it might not be a hard transition to make at all.

Welcome to 2010. And just maybe... the birth of the post scarcity world.

#23 Kutta

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Posted 01 January 2010 - 01:37 PM

Great post Val! Your enthusiasm is definitely contagious. I'd also welcome a fast advancement in nano; if done well it'd relinquish an immense amount of human suffering through boosting energy production, manufacturing, environmental science, medicine and basically all subfields of technology. However, like Nick Bostrom I think that the risks are very much significant. I hope that both political actors and researchers very soon realize the full potentials of nanotech and thus switch to a strategic, careful mode of thinking.

Welcome to 2010. And just maybe... the birth of the post scarcity world.

Post scarcity, if it'll be there, will be there for only a while. Remember, a 3 percent annual economic growth, if we suppose that it means a 3 percent more energy/matter consumption, would use up every atom in the observable universe in 10000 years! See this post.

Edited by Kutta, 01 January 2010 - 01:38 PM.


#24 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 07:22 AM

Great post Val! Your enthusiasm is definitely contagious. I'd also welcome a fast advancement in nano; if done well it'd relinquish an immense amount of human suffering through boosting energy production, manufacturing, environmental science, medicine and basically all subfields of technology. However, like Nick Bostrom I think that the risks are very much significant. I hope that both political actors and researchers very soon realize the full potentials of nanotech and thus switch to a strategic, careful mode of thinking.

Welcome to 2010. And just maybe... the birth of the post scarcity world.

Post scarcity, if it'll be there, will be there for only a while. Remember, a 3 percent annual economic growth, if we suppose that it means a 3 percent more energy/matter consumption, would use up every atom in the observable universe in 10000 years! See this post.


Considering the chaos going on right now in Iran due to the massive increase in networking availability which is allowing the resistance to not only co-ordinate but release continuing updates, and the unrest growing in America over how corrupt Washington has become, I believe that political change is coming far more rapidly than many people want to believe. I think that by the end of Obama's first term, America is going to end Afghanistan, and begin reducing it's expenditures enormously both because the American people will demand it, and because it simply is becoming too expensive to fight. The Internet has done more to influence Iran's political changes than all the threats of force. Once they have ceased to be a fundamentalist bastion of power in the Middle East, most of the terrorists are going to find themselves without a base of support. A million laptops and internet in Afghanistan would do more to solve the terrorist issue than all the troops, and cost considerably less.

It's really a wonderment that we can look at the war in Afghanistan and consider it such a horrible war, considering that it is the SOLE war going on in the world now. In almost our entire history our planet has been embroiled in warfare nearly continuously, often with multiple wars happening simultaneously around the globe. Last century saw the highest peak of warfare ever, with significant percentages of the entire world participating, yet since then, we have been continuously declining in average yearly deaths due to warfare. Compared to previous ages, 2000-2010 has seen a significant decrease in the willingness of any country to engage in open war. America is proving right now why war has become a losing proposition.

Regardless, that war is being fought more on behalf of corporate interests than out of any real sense of threat from Terrorists. And the corporate giants are unlikely to survive the coming decade, let alone continue to play all sides against the middle. With the continual increase in our ability to communicate with each other as individuals and the pressure on manufacturing to produce more in less time, we are already starting to see the market beginning to shift from the hugely centralized systems of the industrial age which produced the Megacorps to much more democratized and decentralized networks that possess far more flexibility and offer greater choice. The Giants are too cumbersome to adapt to the speed with which the market is changing.

Learning how to design things on an atomic scale in and of itself is not dangerous. Our knowledge of design is likely to lag behind our ability to make for a while, much as computer programs have lagged behind hardware. And with the growth of opensource, we will likely develop a paradigm of modular construction at first, using discrete sub assemblies to make a finished project. The complexity needed to make a world killer is something unlikely to be developed outside of military black ops, and with war continuing to be a less viable option, and the trend towards a world government, it is possible that the worst dangers of Nanotech will be averted until such a time as our defenses via uploads, backups, and other methods have been implemented. Getting blown away by a nuke is not much threat when you simply respawn at a safe location due to the up to the millisecond of termination backups being made continuously. I won't say that our future will be without dangers, but we will have far better methods of minimizing the risks than we do today.

In my best guess, the next decade will continue to see nanotech advancing rapidly, with unbelievable advancements being made in electronics and biotech mainly, as well as materials science, but we need a far better knowledge of biology to create nanodevices capable of truly acting like living creatures enough to make grey goo a credible threat. By the time we reach that stage, I think we will have found our world has already started changing enough that violence will considered a poor choice for affecting change.

As for the calculations for how quickly we will return to an economy of scarcity, I find them to be somewhat suspect, as they are based on the assumption that nothing will change between now and the future. We are already finding evidence that our view of physics is not quite complete or correct, so how can we truly even understand what a far more intelligent human race can or will do? Any prediction based on current knowledge which attempts to exceed a timescale of 50 or so years is bound to be ludicrously incorrect. We can't even say what kind of economy will come about with 100% recyclable use of resources, near 100% efficent use of all atoms, or even how little material may be needed to produce any given item. Perhaps our future homes will use graphene walls only a few atoms thick and strong enough to survive hurricanes. We can't even say that we may not chose to rebuild our entire world to 1/44th scale, making our single planet 44x larger while reducing individual consumption a similar amount. Simply put, since we cannot predict what will occur beyond the Singularity, we don't have the foggiest clue as to what the REAL limits to growth are.

#25 Luna

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 09:02 AM

someone mentioned the limitation of energy.

I wonder if (and really hope we can) we can solve it.
I mean, once the sun and energy here runs out, or the entropy of the universe increases.. there is all the theories of heat/cold/crunch deaths but no one seems to theorize continuum for our universe.
That's a bit scary. (to say the least!!!), what if we'd survive aging just to die anyways?

#26 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 10:52 AM

someone mentioned the limitation of energy.

I wonder if (and really hope we can) we can solve it.
I mean, once the sun and energy here runs out, or the entropy of the universe increases.. there is all the theories of heat/cold/crunch deaths but no one seems to theorize continuum for our universe.
That's a bit scary. (to say the least!!!), what if we'd survive aging just to die anyways?


Considering I am as yet unconvinced of big bang theory, (which seems to me to be a last gasp effort of maintaining the concept of creationism, since according to the laws of thermodynamics, it's impossible to create something from nothing) I don't think we will run out of energy. I seriously doubt that we have even remotely close to the "final understanding" of our universe. The fact that we still have anomalies appearing in much if not all science research shows there is too much to yet understand to make any real guesses as to the "limits of growth"

#27 Luna

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 12:01 PM

someone mentioned the limitation of energy.

I wonder if (and really hope we can) we can solve it.
I mean, once the sun and energy here runs out, or the entropy of the universe increases.. there is all the theories of heat/cold/crunch deaths but no one seems to theorize continuum for our universe.
That's a bit scary. (to say the least!!!), what if we'd survive aging just to die anyways?


Considering I am as yet unconvinced of big bang theory, (which seems to me to be a last gasp effort of maintaining the concept of creationism, since according to the laws of thermodynamics, it's impossible to create something from nothing) I don't think we will run out of energy. I seriously doubt that we have even remotely close to the "final understanding" of our universe. The fact that we still have anomalies appearing in much if not all science research shows there is too much to yet understand to make any real guesses as to the "limits of growth"


I totally agree and feel the same.

Yet I find it hard to find relief based on such faith with no evidence for a savior (reverse entropy, resist gravity, infinite energy, refreshable 100% energy, whatever) anywhere and it seems to me like even though the theory is logically very flawed, I still fear we due to the lack of evidence - not against it which we have quite a bit (though still avoided quite well) but rather, to our benefit.
Who cares of the big bang is wrong if instead of running out of energy or having a big rip or decay of atoms or even not having a big crunch and gravity theories are completely flawed and gravity can be resisted! (I really hope it can be), if we just.. I dunno.. dissipate due to energy decay.. that would suck no less!

#28 Kutta

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 04:57 PM

I don't think we will run out of energy. I seriously doubt that we have even remotely close to the "final understanding" of our universe. The fact that we still have anomalies appearing in much if not all science research shows there is too much to yet understand to make any real guesses as to the "limits of growth"

True, but the fact that we have an incomplete understanding of physics and cosmology is negligible evidence in favor of an unlimited energy pool. It's equally possible that we are currently wrong in the sense that we actually overestimate by far the amount of available energy. As fas as there is no concrete, specific evidence for the specific hypothesis that we won't ever run out of energy, it's just wishful thinking to presume it's true.

Edited by Kutta, 03 January 2010 - 04:58 PM.


#29 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 02:07 AM

I don't think we will run out of energy. I seriously doubt that we have even remotely close to the "final understanding" of our universe. The fact that we still have anomalies appearing in much if not all science research shows there is too much to yet understand to make any real guesses as to the "limits of growth"

True, but the fact that we have an incomplete understanding of physics and cosmology is negligible evidence in favor of an unlimited energy pool. It's equally possible that we are currently wrong in the sense that we actually overestimate by far the amount of available energy. As fas as there is no concrete, specific evidence for the specific hypothesis that we won't ever run out of energy, it's just wishful thinking to presume it's true.


Quite true, but I have also seen enough evidence for the possibility that there are sources that are infinite in scope to make me suspect we underestimate more than over estimate. I suppose it is a matter of philosophical opinion more than anything else, since I find the theories of the Plasma Cosmology model to hold stronger evidence than the gravity only model, but also do not think that it has all the answers either. That relativity is incomplete is obvious from the fact that the speed of gravity has to far exceed the speed of light, or orbital mechanics would be impossible. The fact that planets orbit the sun's REAL position in REAL TIME, rather than it's relativistic "ghost" strongly indicates the incompleteness of our current theories. Additionally, considering that voyager is presently in the plasma double layer of the sun and about to pass into an ionized plasma cloud just outside of our solar system should be evidence enough of the electrical properties of matter existing over stellar distances to make it obvious that gravity alone is not the sole player in the structure of the universe were it not for the refusal of any model but that of the big bang and gravity. In a universe in which energy can not ever be created or destroyed, the idea of "running out of energy" seems a bit odd. It may be "wishful thinking" but it's a wishful thought based on the laws of thermodynamics. Just because we don't know yet how to reverse entropy, it does not follow that we NEVER will.

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#30 Luna

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 07:28 AM

Again two things which worry me

1) wishful thinking - we don't to work and prove something rather than just hope. I feel terror when I hold to wishful thoughts and I really hope we can reverse entropy and gain more energy and fight gravity completely somehow.
2) Evidence? what evidence? you mean more like speculations. If there were evidence the mainstream looked different by now




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