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April 12, 2010

Robert Freitas Awarded Historic First Mechanosynthesis Patent

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Robert Freitas has been issued long-awaited diamond mechanosynthesis (DMS) patent (# 7,687,146), on 30 March 2010. This is the first diamond mechanosynthesis (DMS) patent but also, more broadly, it is unquestionably the first mechanosynthesis patent (in the DMS or MNT sense of the word "mechanosynthesis") that has ever been issued, anywhere in the world, as far as we are aware. Robert Freitas is the sole inventor on this patent, but it was assigned to Zyvex (a Nanofactory Collaboration participant) because the work was done while he was still a contractor for the company in 2004 when the provisional was filed.

The literature citation of the patent reads as follows: Robert A. Freitas Jr., “A Simple Tool for Positional Diamond Mechanosynthesis, and its Method of Manufacture,” U.S. Patent No. 7,687,146, issued 30 March 2010.
The URL is: http://www.MolecularAssembler.com/Papers/US7687146.pdf
The patent abstract reads: "A method is described for building a mechanosynthesis tool intended to be used for the molecularly precise fabrication of physical structures -- as for example, diamond structures. An exemplar tool consists of a bulk-synthesized dimer-capped triadamantane tooltip molecule which is initially attached to a deposition surface in tip-down orientation, whereupon CVD or equivalent bulk diamond deposition processes are used to grow a large crystalline handle structure around the tooltip molecule. The large handle with its attached tooltip can then be mechanically separated from the deposition surface, yielding an integral finished tool that can subsequently be used to perform diamond mechanosynthesis in vacuo. The present disclosure is the first description of a complete tool for positional diamond mechanosynthesis, along with its method of manufacture. The same toolbuilding process may be extended to other classes of tooltip molecules, other handle materials, and to mechanosynthetic processes and structures other than those involving diamond."
Diamond Mechanosynthesis is described here at the Nanofactory collaboration site

Research Funding Urgently Needed

External research funding is urgently needed to extend the work of Robert Freitas and the Nanofactory Collaboration and to accelerate progress toward the ultimate goal of building a functioning diamondoid nanofactory.

If you wish to support this work and are willing and able to commit significant financial resources, please contact Robert Freitas or Ralph Merkle to discuss the most efficient application of your resources to the Nanofactory Collaboration.

The economic value of the donated time and equipment invested by all Collaboration participants on focused efforts was about $0.2M/yr during 2001-07, rising to about $0.8M/yr in 2008-09 largely due to EPSRC 's direct support of Moriarty's experimental work during 2008-2013. The ideal direct funding level to maximize results in the next 5 years is $1M-$5M/yr, but incremental support in the $100K/yr range would produce measurable additional progress.

The Institute for Molecular Manufacturing - Robert Freitas Research Fund is one path to providing support to Robert Freitas
If you want molecular nanotechnology to happen sooner, then providing funding to directly to Robert Freitas and the Nanofactory Collaboration is the best way to achieve that goal.

Further Reading

List of Publications related to the Nanofactory collaboration

22. Robert A. Freitas Jr., J. Storrs Hall, Fundamentals of Nanomechanical Engineering, 2011-2012, in preparation.

21. Robert A. Freitas Jr., Ralph C. Merkle, Diamond Surfaces and Diamond Mechanosynthesis, Landes Bioscience, 2010-11, in preparation; http://www.MolecularAssembler.com/DSDM.htm

20. Damian G. Allis, Robert A. Freitas Jr., Ralph C. Merkle, “Single-Atom Radical-Exchange Mechanosynthetic Transfer Reactions for Period 1,2,3,4 Elements using Monosubstituted Adamantane Tools and Workpieces,” J. Comput. Theor. Nanosci. 7(2010). In preparation.

19. Denis Tarasov, Ekaterina Izotova, Diana Alisheva, Natalia Akberova, Robert A. Freitas Jr., “Structural Stability of Clean, Passivated, and Partially Dehydrogenated Cuboid and Octahedral Nanodiamonds up to 2 Nanometers in Size,” J. Comput. Theor. Nanosci. 7(2010). In preparation.

18. Robert A. Freitas Jr., “A Simple Tool for Positional Diamond Mechanosynthesis, and its Method of Manufacture,” U.S. Patent No. 7,687,146, issued 30 March 2010; http://www.MolecularAssembler.com/Papers/US7687146.pdf

17. Denis Tarasov, Natalia Akberova, Ekaterina Izotova, Diana Alisheva, Maksim Astafiev, Robert A. Freitas Jr., “Optimal Tooltip Trajectories in a Hydrogen Abstraction Tool Recharge Reaction Sequence for Positionally Controlled Diamond Mechanosynthesis,” J. Comput. Theor. Nanosci. 10(February 2010):325-353; http://www.MolecularAssembler.com/Papers/TarasovFeb2010.pdf (paper)

16. Robert A. Freitas Jr., Ralph C. Merkle, “A Minimal Toolset for Positional Diamond Mechanosynthesis,” J. Comput. Theor. Nanosci. 5(May 2008):760-861; http://www.MolecularAssembler.com/Papers/MinToolset.pdf (paper). Provisional patent application submitted on 7 September 2007.

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