Nanotechnology: A Gentle Introduction to the Next Big Idea

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9780131014008: Nanotechnology: A Gentle Introduction to the Next Big Idea

This book is the technical and business overview of tomorrow's scientific breakthrough. The authors survey the scientific research and business aspects of the field, try to explain the key concepts, provide a look at current developments, and give some thoughts on where nanotechnology is likely to go in the next few years. The book will be approachable and witty, with lots of illustrations and examples. The focus of the book is on science and technology, but business is discussed as well. The growing interest in nanotechnology by the investment community and the federal dollars going into nanotechnology are explained. Ratner and Ratner go on to explain why the National Science Foundation has estimated that it could be a $1 trillion market by 2015. Nanotechnology, or, as it is sometimes called, molecular manufacturing, is a branch of engineering that deals with the design and manufacture of extremely small electronic circuits and mechanical devices built at the molecular level of matter. Nanotechnology holds promise in the quest for ever-more-powerful computers and communications devices. But the most fascinating applications are in medical science. Nanorobots might serve as programmable antibodies. As disease-causing bacteria and viruses mutate in their endless attempts to get around medical treatments, nanorobots could be reprogrammed to selectively seek out and destroy them. Other nanorobots might be programmed to single out and kill cancer cells.

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From the Back Cover:

Nanotech for everyone! The friendly, non-technical guide to the next industrial revolution.

  • Discover the world's next $1 trillion industry!
  • The easy-to-understand guide to nanoscale technology, science, business, and ethics
  • Today's hottest nanotech research and tomorrow's hottest applications
  • Nanobots, quantum and DNA computing, nanosensors, neuro-electronic interfaces, and much more
  • Insider's assessment of the nanotechnology marketplace and investment opportunities

By 2015, nanotechnology could be a $1 trillion industry. Now, renowned nanotech pioneer Mark Ratner and technology entrepreneur Daniel Ratner show you how nanotech works, why it's so exciting, what's new, and what's next. They survey the entire field—technology and business—covering nanobots, molecular electronics, quantum computing, biostructures, nanotubes, molecular motors, nanosensors, and many other breakthrough applications. They provide easy-to-understand explanations of every key concept, plus dozens of visuals that bring nanotechnology to life. Coverage includes:

  • A simple, brief, almost math-free introduction to nanotech science
  • "Grand tour" of nanotech R&D, from "smart materials" to DNA computing
  • Breakthrough biomedical applications, including neuro-electronic interfaces and new drug delivery systems
  • Current and emerging nanotech systems for optoelectronics and communications
  • Nanotech here and now: nano-enhanced tennis balls, suntan lotions, and other products already in the market
  • A realistic assessment of nanotech investment opportunities for the short- and long-term
  • Ethical issues associated with nanotech research and product development

About the Author:

MARK RATNER, winner of the 2001 Feynman Prize in Nanotechnology, is Charles E. and Emma H. Morrison Professor in Chemistry at Northwestern University. He is widely credited as the "father of molecular-scale electronics"—thanks to his groundbreaking work with Ari Aviram that first envisioned how electronic circuit elements might be constructed from single molecules and how these circuits might behave. Ratner is a member of both the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences. He lectures worldwide on nanotechnology and its implications.

DANIEL RATNER, an engineer and tech entreprenteur, has founded two successful technology startup companies, serves as industry advisor to several other high-tech ventures, and was recently awarded the prestigious "30 Under 30" entrepreneurs' award by Philly Tech magazine.

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