Donald Eigler is renowned for his breakthrough work in the precise manipulation of matter at the atomic level. Agreeing with Roukes, Eigler stated the impact of nanoscience in medicine "is going to grow dramatically over the next 10 to 20 years, especially in the field of regenerative medicine." Loosening his imagination, he could also conceive of other innovations, such as one day "hijacking the brilliant mechanisms of biology" to create functional non-biological nanosystems. "In my dreams I can imagine some environmentally safe virus, which, by design, manufactures and spits out a 64-bit adder. We then just flow the virus's effluent over our chips and have the adders attach in just the right places.
"That's pretty far-fetched stuff, but I think it less far-fetched than Feynman in '59."
Angela Belcher is widely known for her work on evolving new materials for energy, electronics and the environment. W. M. Keck Professor of Energy, Materials Science & Engineering and Biological Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Belcher believes the big impact of nanotechnology and nanoscience will be in manufacturing - specifically clean manufacturing of materials with new routes to synthesis of materials, less waste and self-assembling materials. "It's happening right now, if you look at manufacturing of certain materials for, say, batteries for vehicles, which is based on nanostructuring of materials and getting the right combination of materials together at the nanoscale. Imagine what a big impact that could have in the environment in terms of reducing fossil fuels. So clean manufacturing is one area where I think we will definitely see advances in the next 10 years or so."
David Awschalom is a professor of physics, electrical, and computer engineering at the
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