Tag: Nanotechnology

nanotechnology water bottle
Biomimicry

Nanotech Water Bottle Harvests Water from the Air

The Namib desert gets less than a half an inch of rain per year, yet the stenocara beetle manages to survive in these punishing conditions. The beetle’s secret lies in an array of microscopic bumps and valleys on its shell. The bumps are hydrophilic (water-attracting) and the valleys are hydrophobic (water-repelling). During foggy days, tiny water droplets accumulate on the hydrophilic bumps. Once a droplet is big enough, it tumbles off the bump down into a hydrophobic trough, which funnels the water to the beetle’s mouth. Now, a company called NBD Nano is hoping to mimic stenocara’s shell to create the world’s first self-filling water bottles.

NBD Nano co-founder Deckard Sorenson says that “We see this being applicable to anything from marathon runners to people in third-world countries, because we realize that water is such a large issue in the world today, and we want to try to alleviate those problems with a cost-efficient solution.” According to him, this technology could harvest three liters per square meter per hour in an area with 75% humidity. Unfortunately, the self-filling water bottle is still years from being realized, if ever. For those of you who are impatient for a solution to the world’s water crisis, GrabCAD is holding a contest to design devices that harvest water from the air.

Story via BoingBoing. Image via GrabCAD.

gloves
Augmented Bodies

Spider-Man Gloves

Imagine how much easier the job of window cleaners would be if they could simply scale walls like Spider-Man instead of using elevators, ladders and other gear. Ever since the first Spider-Man comic appeared children and adults alike have been dreaming of these particular talents. Thanks to “gecko-tape”, these dreams are no longer  science fiction. Luckily, this new method of scaling walls doesn’t involve being bit by a radioactive spider.

Read more

Hyperreality

Nanotech Generates the Blackest Black

As the NANO Supermarket opens discussions on the ethics, purpose and usability of nanotechnology, Frederik De Wilde is researching its artistic possibilities. De Wilde is a guest professor at the Transmedia program at the LUCA School of Arts in Brussels and artist in residence at the University of Hasselt. For a few years he has used nanotechnology to generate “super-black” artworks.

One technique is to ‘grow’ carbon nanotubes on a silicon wafer. When a photon approaches the surface it slips in between the nanotubes, and cannot be reflected. Because colors are generated through the reflection of photons, the surface of De Wilde’s artworks appear to be blacker than black. When applied to a complex 3D object it appears to be just a silhouette, because no reflections, highlights or shadows can be seen. The works of De Wilde are reminiscent of Anish Kapoor’s Descent into Limbo shown at De Pont in Tilburg, Netherlands.

Frederik De Wilde takes part in a selection for the TED2013 programme with his talk. Good luck with this.

lungless small
Augmented-Bodies

Nano Product: Lungless

350 million years after crawling from the sea, the Lungless suit will bring us back. Inspired by fish gills, the Lungless Aquatic Respiration Suit uses millions of cascading sheets of nano-membrane to filter oxygen from the water and deliver it to the diver’s mouth. Enjoy unlimited, tank-free exploration on the other 70% of the planet.

From the NANO Supermarket product collection. Designer: Sean Serafini. Enabling technology: Nano structures. Feasibility: Medium.

nansense
Augmented-Bodies

Nano Product: Nansense

For years, people have relied on harsh drugs and irritating alarms to control when they sleep and when they wake. Now, the Nansense wristwatch offers an all-natural way to determine your daily rhythms. Using painless nanoscale needles, Nansense monitors and regulates your levels of cortisol and melatonin, the hormones that govern circadian cycles. Have a deadline to meet? Spin the dial for a gentle way to stay awake. Drowsy from jet lag? Nansense will put you on local time in no time.

From the NANO Supermarket product collection. Designers: Joshua Brevoort, Lisa Chun, Eric Baldwin, Ian Campbell. Enabling technology: Nano sensors, metabolic engineering. Feasibility: Medium.

menoe_1500x877
Augmented-Bodies

Nano Product: Menoé

At the beginning of menopause, celebrate your reproductive past by giving “birth” to a unique peace of jewelry. By using Menoé’s nano-coated birth control pills over a lifetime, you can grow a gem-quality pearl inside your uterus. This beautiful heirloom will inspire a new rite of passage in any woman’s life.

From the NANO Supermarket product collection. Designer: Robin Pohl. Enabling technology: Programmable matter. Feasibility: Very low.

info eggs_1500
Food Technology

Nano Product: Honest Egg

Do away with dishonest health claims for eggs and uncertain promises of organic, free-range hens. With eggshells that change color according to hormones, medicines, and nutrients, Honest Egg tells you the truth about your food. The color of each egg provides information on animal welfare, as well as how healthy the egg is for you. How much time did the chicken spend outside? How much room did it have? Is the egg rich in vitamins and wholesome fats? For ethical eaters, Honest Egg takes the guesswork out of shopping.

From the NANO Supermarket product collection. Designer: Soroka Grievink. Enabling technology: Genetic engineering. Feasibility: Very low.

kreatin_ink_1500x877
Microbial Factories

Nano Product: Keratin Ink

Using genetically modified bacteria, Keratin Ink turns your fingernail clippings into a highly personal ink for writing and drawing. The bacteria transform the keratin in your hair and nails into a dark brown pigment. No need to worry about the microorganisms escaping: Each Keratin Ink well keeps the bacteria safely sealed away. A great gift for the eco-conscious recycler in your life.

From the NANO Supermarket product collection.Designer: Casper Vos. Enabling technology: Metabolic engineering. Feasibility: Medium.

gloo-doo_1500x877
Manufactured Animals

Nano Product: Glo-Doo

Dog feces are an unsightly blemish on city streets. With Glo-Doo, dog food laced with bioluminescent bacteria transforms each pile into an appealing way to light up the night. As the busy microbes get to work, they break down the poop and emit a blue glow in the process. Left long enough, Glo-Doo will decompose your dog’s doo into harmless, stink-free soil.

From the NANO Supermarket product collection. Designer: Sanne Kat. Enabling technology: Genetic engineering. Feasibility: Low.

nico_bear
Calm-technology

Nano Product: Nico

Nico is cute, cuddly and serious about your child’s health. Many adults smoke around children with no thought for their developing lungs. Covered in nicotine-sensitive nano-cloth, Nico monitors your child’s exposure to secondhand smoke by changing from brown to black. Log into the website or simply glance at the Nico keychain to see if your child is around a smoker – and if it’s time to fire the babysitter.

From the NANO Supermarket product collection. Designer: Vincent Hammingh. Enabling technology: Nano sensors. Feasibility: High.