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New Nanomotor is Smallest, Fastest Ever, Can Be Used to Deliver Medicine

| 22 May 2014 15:30

...or it could be used to power the next super solider, but that's just wishful thinking.

A new nanomotor developed by engineers at the University of Texas-Austin is the smallest and fastest ever built, according to the school's engineering website.

The new nanomotor was developed by a team of researchers at the Cockrell School of Engineering, led by Mechanical engineering assistant professor Donglei "Emma" Fan. The design can fit inside a human cell, and is, according to the university, the longest-running nanomotor by far.

With all its dimensions under 1 micrometer in size, the nanomotor could fit inside a human cell and is capable of rotating for 15 continuous hours at a speed of 18,000 RPMs, the speed of a motor in a jet airplane engine. Comparable nanomotors run significantly more slowly, from 14 RPMs to 500 RPMs, and have only rotated for a few seconds up to a few minutes.

Emphasis added. The new nanomotor could be used in a number of applications, but it seems to be medically targeted for now. The motor is capable of moving through liquid, meaning it could float in the bloodstream to deliver countless varieties of medicine (insulin, antibiotics, etc.).

Initially, medicine/biochemical delivery would be achieved by coating a nano machine in the needed drug. The faster the nanomotor spins, the more medicine is delivered.

The motor has yet to be tested in a biological host, but testing "near live cells" will happen soon.

Source: Slashdot

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