Researchers at the University of Nottingham, UK, have achieved a breakthrough in nanotechnology: they succeeded in building self-assembling 3D nanostructures. By introducing a ‘guest molecule’, they create structures that grow upwards, while until now only 2-dimensional surfaces were possible.
The research group sees the main application of the new technology in creating molecular computers and information storage devices of the future.
This is still far removed from ‘real’ 3D printing of course, but it’s an inspiring first step. I still believe that Captain Picard’s ‘Tea, Earl Gray, Hot’ will become a reality one day.
For more background information, read ‘Guest molecule builds 3D nanostructures‘ on physicsworld.com.