Kinematic Self-Replicating Machines

Overview

This book offers a general review of the voluminous theoretical and experimental literature pertaining to physical self-replicating systems. The principal focus here is on self-replicating machine systems. Most importantly, we are concerned with kinematic self-replicating machines: systems in which actual physical objects, not mere patterns of information, undertake their own replication. Following a brief burst of activity in the 1950s and 1980s, the field of kinematic replicating systems design received new ...
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Overview

This book offers a general review of the voluminous theoretical and experimental literature pertaining to physical self-replicating systems. The principal focus here is on self-replicating machine systems. Most importantly, we are concerned with kinematic self-replicating machines: systems in which actual physical objects, not mere patterns of information, undertake their own replication. Following a brief burst of activity in the 1950s and 1980s, the field of kinematic replicating systems design received new interest in the 1990s with the emerging recognition of the feasibility of molecular nanotechnology. The field has experienced a renaissance of research activity since 1999 as researchers have come to recognize that replicating systems are simple enough to permit experimental laboratory demonstrations of working devices.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781570596902
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 10/18/2004
  • Pages: 341

Table of Contents

Table of Contents vii
List of Figures xi
List of Tables xv
Preface and Achnowledgements xvii
Chapter 1 The Concept of Self-Replicating Machines 1
Chapter 2 Classical Theory of Machine Replication 5
2.1 Von Neumann's Contributions 5
2.1.1 A Logical Organization of Self-Replication 6
2.1.2 The Kinematic Model of Machine Replication 7
2.1.3 The Cellular Automaton (CA) Model of Machine Replication 8
2.1.4 Limitations of von Neumann's Cellular Automaton Model 10
2.1.5 Design for Nonevolvability 10
2.2 Subsequent Work on Computational Models of Self-Replication 11
2.2.1 Cellular Automata Models of Self-Replication 11
2.2.2 Computational Modeling with Continuous Space and Virtual Physics 14
2.3 Alternative Models of Machine Replication 15
2.3.1 Simplified von Neumann Automaton Replication 15
2.3.2 Von Neumann Automaton Replication with Diversification 15
2.3.3 Thatcher's Variant: Inferring Structure 15
2.3.4 Replication by Component Analysis 16
2.3.5 Machine Replication without Description 16
2.3.6 Nonautonomous Machine Replication 17
2.3.7 Embodied Evolution: Algorithmic Replication 18
Chapter 3 Macroscale Kinematic Machine Replicators 19
3.1 Moore Artificial Living Plants (1956) 19
3.2 Browning Unnatural Living State (1956, 1978) 20
3.3 Penrose Block Replicators (1957-1962) 21
3.4 Jacobson Locomotive Toy Train Replicator (1958) 23
3.5 Morowitz Floating Electromechanical Replicator (1959) 24
3.6 Dyson Terraforming Replicators (1970, 1979) 24
3.7 Self-Replicating Automated Industrial Factory (1973-present) 25
3.8 Macroscale Kinematic Cellular Automata (1975-present) 28
3.9 Space Manufacturing Systems with Bootstrapping (1977-present) 35
3.10 Taylor Santa Claus Machine (1978) 37
3.11 Freitas Interstellar Probe Replicator (1979-1980) 38
3.12 Bradley Self-Replicating Teleoperated Machine Shop (1980) 40
3.13 NASA Summer Study on Self-Replicating Systems (1980-1982) 42
3.13.1 NASA Robot Replication Feasibility Demonstration 45
3.13.2 Self-Replicating Lunar Factories 46
3.13.2.1 Von Tiesenhausen Unit Replication System 46
3.13.2.2 Freitas Factory Replication System 49
3.14 Freitas Atomic Separator Replicator (1981) 52
3.15 Lackner-Wendt Auxon Replicators (1995) 53
3.16 The Collins Patents on Reproductive Mechanics (1997-1998) 54
3.17 Lohn Electromechanical Replicators (1998) 58
3.18 Moses Self-Replicating Construction Machine (1999-2001) 60
3.19 Self-Replicating Robots for Space Solar Power (2000) 63
3.20 Three-Dimensional Solid Printing (2000-present) 64
3.21 Bererton Self-Repairing Robots (2000-2004) 67
3.22 Brooks Living Machines Program (2001-present) 68
3.23 Chirikjian Group Self-Replicating Robots (2001-2003) 69
3.23.1 Prototype 1 (2001) 69
3.23.2 Remote-Controlled Self-Replicating Robots (2002) 69
3.23.3 Semi-Autonomous Self-Replicating Robot (2002) 75
3.23.4 Suthakorn-Cushing-Chirikjian Autonomous Replicator (2002-2003) 75
3.24 Chirikjian Self-Replicating Lunar Factory Concept (2002) 76
3.25 NIAC Phase I Studies on Self-Replicating Systems (2002-2004) 78
3.25.1 Lipson Self-Extending Machines (2002) 78
3.25.2 Chirikjian Self-Replicating Lunar Factories (2003-2004) 78
3.25.3 Todd Robotic Lunar Ecopoiesis (2003-2004) 79
3.25.4 Toth-Fejel Kinematic Cellular Automata (2003-2004) 79
3.26 Robosphere Self-Sustaining Robotic Ecologies (2002-2004) 81
3.27 Lozneanu-Sanduloviciu Plasma Cell Replicators (2003) 81
3.28 Griffith Mechanical Self-Replicating Strings (2003-2004) 82
3.29 Self-Replicating Robotic Lunar Factory (SRRLF) (2003-2004) 85
Chapter 4 Microscale and Molecular Kinematic Machine Replicators 89
4.1 Molecular Self-Assembly and Autocatalysis for Self-Replication 90
4.1.1 Self-Assembling Peptides, Porphyrins, Nucleotides and DNA 91
4.1.2 Self-Assembling Crystalline Solids 93
4.1.3 Self-Assembling Dendrimers 93
4.1.4 Self-Assembling Rotaxanes and Catenanes 93
4.1.5 Self-Assembly of Mechanical Parts and Conformational Switches 94
4.1.6 Autocatalysis and Autocatalytic Networks 95
4.2 Ribosomes: Molecular Positional Assembly for Self-Replication 96
4.3 Natural Biological Replicators 101
4.3.1 Prions 101
4.3.2 Viroids 101
4.3.3 Viruses 102
4.3.4 Prokaryotic Cells 103
4.3.5 Plasmids 104
4.3.6 Eukaryotic Cells 105
4.3.7 Mitochondria 107
4.3.8 Large Metazoans 107
4.4 Artificial Biological Replicators (1965-present) 108
4.5 Biomolecular-Directed Positional Parts Assembly (1994-present) 110
4.5.1 Positional Assembly Using DNA 110
4.5.2 Positional Assembly Using Proteins 112
4.5.3 Positional Assembly Using Microbes and Viruses 114
4.5.4 Positional Assembly Using Other Biological Means 115
4.6 Feynman Hierarchical Machine Shop (1959) and Microassembly 115
4.7 Shoulders Electronic Micromachining Replicator (1960-1965) 117
4.8 Laing Molecular Tapeworms (1974-1978) 118
4.9 Drexler Molecular Assemblers (1981-1992) 119
4.9.1 Drexler Generic Assembler (1986) 120
4.9.2 Drexler Extruding Tube Assembler (1991) 120
4.9.3 Drexler Nanofactory Replication System (1991-1992) 121
4.9.4 Feynman Grand Prize (Foresight Institute) 125
4.10 Merkle Molecular Assemblers (1991-2000) 125
4.10.1 Merkle Generic Assembler (1992-1994) 125
4.10.2 Merkle Cased Hydrocarbon Assembler (1998-2000) 126
4.11 Extruding Brick Assemblers (1992-2003) 127
4.11.1 Drexler Minimal Assembler (1992) 127
4.11.2 Merkle Replicating Brick Assembler (1995-1997) 129
4.11.3 Merkle-Freitas Hydrocarbon Molecular Assembler (2000-2003) 130
4.11.3.1 Summary Description 132
4.11.3.2 Product Object Extrusion 132
4.11.3.3 The Broadcast Architecture for Control 132
4.11.3.4 Hydrocarbon Assembler Subsystems 133
4.12 Bishop Overtool Universal Assembler (1995-1996) 135
4.13 Goddard Proposed Assembler Simulation Study (1996) 135
4.14 Zyvex Nanomanipulator Array Assembler System (1997-1999) 135
4.15 Bishop Rotary Assembler (1998) 136
4.16 Hall Factory Replication System (1999) 136
4.17 Zyvex Exponential Assembly (2000) 138
4.18 Freitas Biphase Assembler (2000) 140
4.19 Phoenix Primitive Nanofactory (2003) 141
4.20 Zyvex Microscale Assemblers (2003) 144
Chapter 5 Issues in Kinematic Machine Replication Engineering 145
5.1 General Taxonomy of Replicators 145
5.1.1 Dawkins Classification of Replicators (1976) 146
5.1.2 Miller Critical Subsystems of Living Systems (1978) 146
5.1.3 Hasslacher-Tilden MAP Survival Space (1994-1995) 147
5.1.4 Szathmary Classification of Replicators (1995-2000) 148
5.1.5 Sipper POE Model of Bio-Inspired Hardware Systems (1997) 149
5.1.6 Taylor Categorization of Reproducers (1999) 150
5.1.7 Bohringer et al Taxonomy of Microassembly (1999) 150
5.1.8 Suthakorn-Chirikjian Categorization of Self-Replicating Robots (2002-2003) 151
5.1.9 Freitas-Merkle Map of the Kinematic Replicator Design Space (2003-2004) 152
5.2 Replication Time vs. Replicator Mass 175
5.3 Minimum and Maximum Size of Kinematic Replicators 176
5.4 Efficient Replicator Scaling Conjecture 178
5.5 Fallacy of the Substrate 178
5.6 Closure Theory and Closure Engineering 180
5.7 Massively Parallel Molecular Manufacturing 182
5.8 Software Simulators for Robots and Automated Manufacturing 184
5.9 Brief Mathematical Primer on Self-Replicating Systems 185
5.9.1 Fibonacci's Rabbits 185
5.9.2 Strategies for Exponential Kinematic Self-Replication 186
5.9.3 Limits to Exponential Kinematic Self-Replication 188
5.9.4 Performance of Convergent Assembly Nanofactory Systems 191
5.9.5 Power Law Scaling in Convergent Assembly Nanofactory Systems 193
5.9.6 Design Tradeoffs in Nanofactory Assembly Process Specialization 194
5.10 Replicators and Artificial Intelligence (AI) 195
5.11 Replicators and Public Safety 196
Chapter 6 Motivations for Molecular-Scale Machine Replicator Design 201
6.1 Initial Motivations for Study 201
6.2 Arguments Favoring a Focused Design Effort 201
6.2.1 Design Precedes Construction 202
6.2.2 Demonstration of Feasibility 202
6.2.3 Clarifying the Proposal 204
6.3 Arguments Against a Focused Design Effort 204
6.3.1 Molecular Assemblers Are Too Dangerous 204
6.3.2 Molecular Assemblers Are "Impossible" 206
6.3.3 Assemblers Have Not Yet Been Demonstrated 208
6.3.4 An Early Design Will Not Speed Development 208
6.3.5 Assemblers Would Be No Better Than Conventional Alternatives 210
6.3.6 Potential Design Errors Make the Analysis Inherently Worthless 210
6.3.7 Macroscale-Inspired Machinery Will Not Work at the Nanoscale 211
6.3.8 The Design Is Too Obvious 212
6.4 Specific Goals of a Focused Design Effort 212
6.4.1 Show Feasibility of Molecular Assembler or Nanofactory 212
6.4.2 Exemplify a Simple Design 213
6.4.3 Exemplify a Capable Design 214
6.4.4 Exemplify a Benign Design 215
6.4.5 Embody Principles of Good Design 215
6.4.6 Systems and Proposals for Future Research 216
6.5 Focusing on Molecular Assemblers 216
Appendix A Data for Replication Time and Replicator Mass 219
Appendix B Design Notes on Some Aspects of the Merkle-Freitas Molecular Assembler 223
B.1 Geometrical Derivation of Assembler Dimensions 223
B.2 Some Limits to Assembler Scalability 224
B.3 Gas Phase vs. Solvent Phase Manufacturing 225
B.4 Acoustic Transducer for Power and Control 225
B.4.1 Selection of Acoustic Frequency 225
B.4.2 Physical Description of Acoustic Transducer and Pressure Bands 226
B.4.3 Piston Fluid Flow Dynamics 227
B.4.3.1 Bulk Fluid and Laminar Flows 227
B.4.3.2 Confined-Fluid Density Layering Due to Near-Wall Solvation Forces 228
B.4.3.3 Piston Operation in the Desorption and Viscous Regimes 229
B.4.3.3.1 Nature of the Physisorbed Monolayer 229
B.4.3.3.2 Operational Regimes Defined 229
B.4.3.3.3 Operation in the Desorption Regime 229
B.4.3.3.4 Operation in the Viscous Regime 231
B.4.3.3.5 Physisorption and Desorption of Nonsolvent Molecules 231
B.4.4 Thermal Expansion, Acoustic Cavitation and Resonance 232
B.4.4.1 Thermal Expansion in Diamond Walls 232
B.4.4.2 Transient Cavitation 232
B.4.4.3 Stable Cavitation 232
B.4.4.4 Acoustic Heating 232
B.4.4.5 Acoustic Torque and Fluid Streaming 232
B.4.4.6 Shock Wave Formation 232
B.4.5 Energy Efficiency and Energy Cost of Molecular Manufacturing 233
B.5 Wall Stiffness During External Acoustic Forcing, Thermal Noise, or Collision 233
B.6 Wall Stiffness During Internal Mechanical Activities 233
B.7 Wall Sublimation and Mechanical Depassivation Contamination 234
References 235
Index 313
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