SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING NEWS
New York, NY — In an effort to establish a forum for technical discussion on nanotechnology and bring the new discipline to the forefront of scientific knowledge, ASME International (American Society of Mechanical Engineers) has announced an ambitious publishing activity for the year 2001.
Beginning in January and continuing to the end of the year, the Society’s flagship publication, Mechanical Engineering magazine, will carry articles exploring research directions, developmental initiatives, and product commercialization in the field of nanotechnology.
The publishing program follows up a workshop on nanotechnology that ASME International held on Dec. 6, 2000, in Washington, D.C. That workshop brought together leading experts and authorities to discuss, among other subjects, the role of nanotechnology in information storage systems, environmental remediation, and the life sciences.
Nanotechnology involves the creation of materials and devices at the atomic and molecular level. Working at nanoscale, researchers have shown, can render structures with unique dynamic properties that traditional chemistry cannot create. Current commercial pathways include coatings featuring high levels of ductility and transparency; however, proponents of nanotechnology envision immense potential extending to environmental clean-up, fuel production, and prevention of disease in humans.
“Nanoscale science and engineering promise to restructure almost all industries toward the next industrial revolution, and to assure the quality of life in an increasingly crowded planet with shrinking energy and material resources,” writes Mihail Roco of the National Science Foundation in the January issue of Mechanical Engineering.
According to the article, titled “A Frontier for Engineering,” nanotechnology:
— Has received strong government support and a $422 million budget in 2001.
— Has been applied to the development of innovative products at IBM Corp., Mobil, Toyota and Eastman Kodak, among other leading firms.
— May allow for the creation of biomedical sensors that enhance the performance of the human body and prolong life.
— Could improve agricultural yields and provide economical water filtration.
— Is an interdisciplinary field involving mechanical engineers, chemists, physicists, biologists, and other professionals.
Additional information on Mechanical Engineering magazine as well as the field of nanotechnology is available online at http://www.asme.org .
ASME is a 125,000-member organization focused on technical, educational and research issues. ASME conducts one of the world’s largest technical publishing operations, holds some 30 technical conferences and 200 professional development courses each year, and sets internationally recognized industrial and manufacturing standards.