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2002 IMM Prizes in Computational Nanotechnology


For 2002 IMM made awards in three categories

DESIGN: a new design of a molecular machine system or component part: the team of Santiago Solares, Mario Blanco, and William A. Goddard III at the California Institute of Technology

RENDERING: a new rendering (static illustration) enabling better visualization of an existing molecular machine system or component part design; Carlo D. Montemagno at UCLA

SIMULATION: a new active simulation (animation) enabling better visualization over time of a molecular machine system or component part design’s movement, operating within its design parameters: Lawrence Fields and Jillian Rose, of Phlesch Bubble Productions

The awards on were presented by Dr. David Forrest, President of the Institute for Molecular Manufacturing, on Saturday night, Oct. 12, 2002, at an awards banquet held in conjunction with the 10th Foresight Conference on Molecular Nanotechnology.


3 October 2002
Institute for Molecular Manufacturing
Palo Alto, CA

The Institute for Molecular Manufacturing has announced the 2002 winners of three IMM Prizes in Computational Nanotechnology (www.imm.org/research/prizes/). The purpose of the Prizes is to stimulate research on the design, analysis, and visualization of molecular machines. The IMM Prizes in Computational Nanotechnology were established with a generous donation from IMM Senior Associate Dan Kindsvater, and this is the first year the prizes are being awarded. This year we have awards in three separate categories:

DESIGN: which involves a new design of a molecular machine system or component part

RENDERING: which would be a new rendering that enables better visualization of an existing molecular machine system or component part design

SIMULATION: a new animation enabling better visualization over time of a molecular machine system

The DESIGN Category was won by the team of Santiago Solares, Mario Blanco, and William A. Goddard III at the California Institute of Technology, for their entry entitled, “Design of a Nanomechanical Fluid Control Valve Based on Functionalized Silicon Cantilevers: Coupling Molecular Mechanics and Classical Engineering Design.” They provided and analyzed a novel design for the transport and precise flow control of molecules through a carbon nanotube. This design, based on the ability to constrict a nanotube by kinking it, could be constructed with existing technology.

Available on the winners’ web site:
Design of a Nanomechanical Fluid Control Valve Based on Functionalized Silicon Cantilevers:
Coupling Molecular Mechanics and Classical Engineering Design

graphic  of Nanomechanical Fluid Control Valve

The RENDERING Category was won by Carlo D. Montemagno at UCLA, for his entry “Engineering the Molecular Sorter.” Dr. Montemagno provided a compelling visual representation of the sorting and purification of target molecules using molecular motors that have spindles coated with antibodies.

Engineering the Molecule Sorter

larger image (74,785 bytes)
MPG movie (2,612,368 bytes)

Lawrence Fields and Jillian Rose, of Phlesch Bubble Productions, won the SIMULATION category for their animation of a Freitas respirocyte. They simulated–with fine attention to detail, scientific accuracy, and high visual impact–how a respirocyte (which is a machine that would function as a red blood cell, absorbing CO2 and releasing oxygen) would operate in the bloodstream.

Available on the winners’ web site:
Animation of a respirocyte (an artificial red blood cell) being injected into the bloodstream
respirocytes in the bloodstream

The 2002 Prizes include a $1000 cash award in each category. Details about the prizes are available on the IMM website (http://www.imm.org/research/prizes/).

The Institute for Molecular Manufacturing (www.imm.org) is a non-profit organization established to provide funding to develop molecular nanotechnology. Molecular nanotechnology is a technology based on assemblers able to build systems to complex atomic specification under programmable control.