David Kirkpatrick

June 27, 2008

Nanowire circuits and tracking asteroids

From KurzweilAI.net, the House passed a bill to begin tracking potential Earth-strike asteroids, and a new low-cost, high-volume method of integrating nanowires onto silicon has been developed.

House passes bill mandating a plan for asteroid warning and deflection
KurzweilAI.net, June 27, 2008

In recently passed H.R.6063, The U.S. House of Representatives would direct the NASA Administrator to develop plans for a low-cost spacemission to rendezvous with the Apophis asteroid and attach a tracking device (subject to Senate approval).

The Apophis is expected to pass at a distance from Earth that is closer than geostationary satellites in 2029.

The bill would also require the Director of the White House’s Office of Science and TechnologyPolicy (OSTP) to develop a policy within two years for notifying Federal agencies and relevant emergency response institutions of an impending near-Earth objectthreat. And the OSTP would be required to recommend a Federal agency (or agencies) to be responsible for protecting the Nation from any near-Earth object anticipated to collide with Earth, and for implementing a deflection campaign.

 

Researchers develop new technique for fabricating nanowire circuits
Nanowerk News, June 26, 2008

Scientists at Harvard University and German universities of Jena, Gottingen, and Bremen have developed a reproducible, high-volume, low-cost fabrication methodfor integrating nanowire devices directly onto silicon.

The method incorporates spin-on glass technology, used in silicon integrated circuits manufacturing, and photolithography, transferring a circuit pattern onto a substrate with light. These devices can then function as light-emitting diodes, with the color of light determined by the type of semiconductor nanowire used.

Because nanowires can be made of materials commonly used in electronics and photonics, they hold great promise for integrating efficient light emitters, and could lead to the development of a completely new class of integrated circuits, such as large arrays of ultra-small nanoscale lasers that could be designed as high-density optical interconnects or used for on-chip chemical sensing.

 
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