Nanotechnology and molecular engineering has gained great deal of importance in the recent years. The main obstruction to molecular manufacturing today is the lack of an experimental procedure for routinely and precisely building objects, atom by atom, at the molecular scale. The key to this is molecular positional assembly, or mechanosynthesis – the formation of covalent chemical bonds using precisely applied mechanical forces.

This paper investigates a specific mechanical dimer placement tool for diamond mechanosynthesis. The tool is stable in isolation, and capable of depositing carbon dimers on diamond surface at room temperature. A preliminary proposal for a four-step experimental process is also presented by which the dimer placement tool, along with its associated macroscale handle structure, could be fabricated using presently-available bulk-chemistry techniques. A practical dimer placement tool built will allow the fabrication of improved mechanosynthesis tools, thus opening up the entire field of molecularly-precise material fabrication and, indeed, “molecular machine manufacturing” to the practical field of mechanical engineering.

The revolutionary Feynman vision of a powerful and general nanotechnology, based on nanomachines that build with atom-by-atom control, promises great opportunities in the field of engineering. The Feynman vision projects the development of nanomachines able to build nanomachines and other products with atom-by-atom control (a process termed molecular manufacturing). The individual control of molecular composition and placement is often cited as a goal of nanotechnology. To date, many nanotechnology efforts have been content to achieve nanoscale, but not atomic-precision, or to build large quantities of small identical molecules. This paper takes a step closer in realizing the ideal of the Feynman vision of nano-molecular.

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