University of Nevada to host world's first nanomechanics conference May 18-19 in Reno

03/23/04

Attendance limited for celebration of 10th anniversary of scientists who pioneered this area of discovery

Nano-sensors that can "sniff" out explosives, detect radiation and warn of harmful chemicals in the air and water will be the focus of the world's first conference on "Nanomechanics: Sensors and Actuators 2004" on May 1819 at the University of Nevada, Reno.

This conference will be sponsored by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Microcantilevers -- diving-board-like structures smaller than an ant's leg -- are devices that make nanomechanical sensing, as well as an astounding breadth of other applications, possible. Microsensors like the microcantilever are expected to outnumber people 10,000 to one by the year 2010. Already, in the decade since research scientists Thomas Thundat and James Gimzeweski discovered that microcantilevers could be used to detect "nano" amounts of biological, chemical and explosive substances, as well as radiation, the field of nanomechanical sensing has grown exponentially. The conference is a forum for all audiences.

Cost: Discount before April 1: students/young engineers $95; academia, non-profit, government $295; general $395; one-day $195.

After April 1: students/young engineers $125; academia, non-profit, government $325; general $425; one-day $225

Registration: 1-800-THE-ASME.

Jesse Adams, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Nevada, co-authored a paper along with Thundat, of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, that appeared in the Oct. 2 issue of the journal, Nature. The paper, "A microsensor for trinitrotoluene vapour" demonstrated their invention of a compact and highly sensitive TNT-sensing device that could one day be used in the fight against terrorism at airports and other public gatherings.

Source: Eurekalert & others

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