Microscopic “machines”, known as molecular machines or nanomachines, are likely to play an important role in the future in the development of new materials, sensors, energy storage systems and other innovations with practical applications such as nano-robots circulating within the body to destroy cancer cells.
© Shutterstock nanomachines, the “vehicle” of the future
This is what Nobel Prize winner Jean-Pierre Savage, a professor at the University of Strasbourg, and a emeritus research director at France’s Institute of Science and Hypermolecular Science and Engineering, said at an event at the Concert Hall. The French chemist is a pioneer in the field of molecular machines, that is, molecule blocks that change shape and move in a controlled manner like a machine.
Surveys by Jean-Pierre Sowaz , Fraser Stoddart and Bernard Feringkar, who shared Nobel Chemistry in 2016 for their molecular engine offer, have opened new paths in nanotechnology, creating nanomachines that reproduce the movements of living beings. With the speech of Mr. Sowaz entitled “From the Chemical Topology in Molecular Engines”, this year’s speech cycle of “CNRS – Overcoming the Limits of Knowledge” series was opened, organized by the Athens Megaron and Megaron Plus, in collaboration with the CNRS (National Science Research Center of France), the French Embassy and the French Institute of Greece. The discussion was opened and coordinated by Georgios Kokotos, chairman of the Department of Chemistry at the University of Athens, who praised the work of the French Nobel Prize winner.
Sowaz pointed out that over the past twenty years, the molecular engine sector has experienced dramatic growth as chemists and other scientists are creating molecules or sets of molecules with increasingly complex functions.
It is estimated, as Mr Kokotos said, that the molecular engine is today at the same stage as the 1830 electric engine, when scientists created cranks and wheels without knowing that this would lead to electric trains, washing machines, fans and mixers.
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