Foresight Nanotech Institute

Overview

In 1986 Foresight was founded on a vision of the emerging field of nanotechnology in which current capabilities in nanotechnology eventually lead to fabrication of complex products with atom-by-atom control of the manufacturing process. Foresight works to educate the public, researchers, and policymakers about what advanced nanotechnology will be like, what it can do, how to move from current nanotechnology to advanced nanotechnology, and how to capture the opportunities and avoid the risks of the ultimate manufacturing technology (1b).

Foresight Institute is a think tank and public interest organization focused on transformative future technologies. Its mission is to discover and promote the upsides, and help avoid the dangers, of nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, biotech, and similar life-changing developments.  Foresight investigates nanotechnology in areas from medicine to the environment to space settlement (1a).

Facilities and Research Initiatives

Every year the Foresight Institute gives out an award for significant advancements in nanotechnology entitled the Feynman Prize.  Established in 1993 in honor of Nobel Prize winner Richard Feynman, two $5,000 prizes are awarded in two categories, theory and experiment. The prizes are to recognize researchers whose recent work has most advanced the field toward the achievement of Feynman's vision for nanotechnology: molecular manufacturing, the construction of atomically-precise products through the use of molecular machine systems.  The annual Feynman Prizes are leading to the eventual awarding of the $250,000 Feynman Grand Prize, an incentive prize for making a nanometer-scale robotic arm and a nanometer-scale computing device, the most critical components in future molecular manufacturing systems (2).

Foresight Institute has other awards and prizes that recognize researchers, students, journalists, and governmental officials who make major contributions to the advancement and achievement of molecular manufacturing (1b).

Strategic Partnerships

Foresight works with a wide variety of organizations as partners, sponsors and corporate members (1a).  Foresight has two sister organizations the Institute for Molecular Manufacturing and the Center for Constitutional Issues in Technology.  Foresight has been linked in the past to major such as Apple, Mitsubishi, Ford and Xerox (1c).   Current corporate members of Foresight include Sun Microsystems, Accelrys and Dorsey (1d).

Sources

  1. Foresight Institute (2012). Retrieved on November 14, 2012
    1. “About the Foresight Institute” from www.foresight.org/about/index.html
    2. “Foresight Activities” from www.foresight.org/about/activities.html#publications
    3. “Prior Foresight Corporate Conference Sponsors” from www.foresight.org/about/sponsors.html  
    4. “Corporate Members” from www.foresight.org/about/corporate.html
  2. Nanowerk (2010, December 20). “Feynman Prizes in Nanotechnology Awarded by Foresight Institute.” Retrieved on November 14, 2012 from www.nanowerk.com/news/newsid=19493.php