NewScientistTech has an article today about a design advance in nanotech that could pave the way for additional future advances. The design involves a carbon nanotube 10 nanometers long and 1 nm wide, suspended between two other nanotubes with larger diameters. The central tube forms a rotating join that spins when a current is passed through the system.
The design—designed in computer simulations by Colin Lambert and others at Lancaster University—represents one of the simplest, smallest motors ever designed, and could be used for applications ranging from computing to nano-pumps used for molecular assembly.
As yet, the design has only existed in computer simulations, but Adrian Bachtold of the Catalan Institute for Nanotechnology plans to construct the turbines for testing.