Project Overview

NIRT: Synthesis, Actuation and Control of Single-Molecule Nanocars

# 0708765
James Tour (Principal Investigator)
Anatoly Kolomeisky (Co-Principal Investigator)
Kevin Kelly (Co-Principal Investigator)

The objective of this research is to develop external electronic and optical methods for controllably imaging, sensing, propelling and actuating nanocars and nanotrucks and to devise theoretical models for predicting the motion and output from these diminutive structures. The approach is to synthesize new nanocar entities that are suitable for rolling motion and susceptible to electronic manipulation, imaging using a host of microscopies and devising theoretical models for predicting the mechanisms, range of motion and work output extractable from truly nano-sized single-molecule machines.

Intellectual merit:Transport of goods and materials between points is at the heart of all engineering and construction in real-world systems. As researchers delve into the arena of the nano-sized world, it beckons that they learn to manipulate and transport nanometer-scale materials in a similar manner. This proposed work outlines a method to control the motion of nanocars at the nanoscale level, and thereby pave the way for future bottom-up nanoscale construction.

Broader Impact: The research plan outlined above will be leveraged with education and outreach efforts using the NanoKids program, thereby multiplying this program's impact on grades 6-12 students and teachers, undergraduate students, graduate students, and traditionally underrepresented groups in the sciences and engineering. This uses the attractiveness of nanoscale science to introduce fundamental concepts in chemistry, physics and biology including how those concepts eventually make their way into the marketplace thus impacting everyday life. Funding this work will provide a path to future construction while laying groundwork for education from middle school to post graduate studies.

Source: NSF