Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"IMHO, having students do computer games projects is absolutely the best possible way to teach programming, graphics, software engineering, object oriented programming, etc."
- Rudy Rucker

Sinclair Molecule Chain  
  A monofilament fiber, used for strength.  

Juno was invisible behind her when the fusion motors fired. Immediately the cable at her tail began to unroll. The cable was thirty miles long and was made of braided Sinclair molecule chain. Trailing at the end was a lead capsule as heavy as the ramrobot itself.
From A Gift From Earth, by Larry Niven.
Published by Del Rey in 1968
Additional resources -

Researchers are pretty close with this one. In November of 2006, NIST reported on carbon nanotube "cutlery" - a single carbon nanotube stretched between two tungsten needles.


(Scanning electron micrograph of a prototype 'nanoknife' )

Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the University of Colorado at Boulder (CU) have designed a carbon nanotube knife that, in theory, would work like a tight-wire cheese slicer. In a paper presented this month at the 2006 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition*, the research team announced a prototype nanoknife that could, in the future, become a tabletop tool of biology, allowing scientists to cut and study cells more precisely than they can today.

For years, biologists have wrestled with conventional diamond or glass knives, which cut frozen cell samples at a large angle, forcing the samples to bend and sometimes later crack. Because carbon nanotubes are extremely strong and slender in diameter, they make ideal materials for thinly cutting precise slivers of cells. In particular, scientists might use the nanoknife to make 3D images of cells and tissues for electron tomography, which requires samples less than 300 nanometers thick.

By manipulating carbon nanotubes inside scanning electron microscopes, 21st-century nanosmiths have begun crafting a suite of research tools, including nanotweezers, nanobearings and nano-oscillators. To design the nanoknife, the NIST and CU scientists welded a carbon nanotube between two electrochemically sharpened tungsten needles. In the resulting prototype, the nanotube stretches between two ends of a tungsten wire loop. The knife resembles a steel wire that cuts a block of cheese.

Thanks to an anonymous reader who reminded me about this item.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 3 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from A Gift From Earth
  More Ideas and Technology by Larry Niven
  Tech news articles related to A Gift From Earth
  Tech news articles related to works by Larry Niven

Articles related to Material
Grow Wood Without Trees
New Material Absorbs and Stores Solar Energy
3D Printed Damascus Steel Now Possible
3D Printing Of Metallic Glass

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Science Fiction Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Science Fiction in the News

Soft Polymer 'Synaptic Transistors' Mimic Brain Plasticity
'He had then applied countless different electrical vibrations to this metallic brain-stuff...'

'Human Augmentation' Necessary, Says Space Force Scientist
'Neural circuits buzzed and every sense and response in his body was accelerated by a ratio of five.'

Grow Wood Without Trees
Pretty soon, you'll start seeing this term on very expensive items.

Biohybrid Robotics USArmy Adds Muscle Tissue To Robots
'Great rectangular slabs of muscle, slung into a rectangular frame.'

China Requires Social Credit Codes Of Live Stream Users
'Every man has his characteristic strakh...'

African Gray Parrot Given Vehicle To Drive
It's an old story, but it "checks out", as fans say.

NYPD Dog Robot Called Out As Sfnal
Reality now features props from science fiction television.

Autonomous Russian Greenhouse For ISS Wheat
'We saw the gardens, flooded with artificial sunlight, planted with everything imaginable, that supplied the necessary food.'

NASA MOXIE Extracts Oxygen From Mars' Air
'Making oxygen is the trick...'

Implantable Covid-Detecting Microchip Developed By DARPA
'Employees... were implanted with advanced microprocessors...'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Science Fiction Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.