Sunday, March 25, 2007


Last night I fell asleep to the pitter patter of raindrops and the whirl of cooling fans. When I woke up this morning the rain was still going, but the whisper of the fans had stop. Lately that has instilled something of a Pavlovian response in me because I know it signals the end of a simulation. Click the pic to see the final carbon nanotube speed reduction box. Lowering the temperature didn't really do that much for the wobble. However I ended up placing a few anchor jigs around the perimeter of the casing and that seems to help a lot. So what's next? Well, the original plan for the box included a shaft on the output gear ending in a T-junction. I'm thinking I might pursue that.


jim moore said...

Hi Tom,
Congratulations on finishing the gear.

I intend to start on a nan-design project myself, I am in a disagreement about how far down in scale the mechanical engineering approach can work (at room temperature).
My Challenge is to build an nano-mechanical clock out of just carbon and hydrogen.
By a Nano-mechanical Clock, its a clock made out of gears and keeps a constant rate and ratio of movement between the minute hand and hour hand.
And I just wondered if you had any suggestions?

Tom said...


For a good run down on nano-scale engineering check out Nanosystems by K. Eric Dexler. This should resolve most questions about how far the mechanical engineering approach will work. In short, pretty far. I have been wondering if I should add more engineering information to my blog like torques and angular velocity and stuff. Within NanoEngineer 1 I am pretty sure electrostatic forces and quantum effects are not taken into account, just good old fashion Newtonian mechanics. However I would recommend you don't spend anytime on a tourbillon movement; while it would be beautiful, gravity just doesn't matter at this scale. Please keep me informed on how your project is going, and if you have any other questions, I would be happy to try to help.

Tom said...

That's K.Eric Drexler