Whitesides Laboratory

Whitesides Laboratory

30. George Whitesides

Inventor and cofounder of Nano-Terra

His breakthroughs in molec-ular self-assembly and other production processes over a 45-year career at Harvard and MIT were a catalyst for today's proliferation of biotechnology and nanotechnology. Dubbed a legend in chemistry by his peers, George Whitesides, 69, has cofounded more than a half-dozen companies, the biggest of which is biotech giant Genzyme. His latest, Nano-Terra, has attracted heavyweight partners, including 3M, Exide, Merck KGaA, and the Pentagon; its nanotech efforts, he says, could lead to inexpensive biosensors, more advanced solar cells, and electromagnetic shields that prevent an enemy from jamming communication signals on the battlefield. — by Chuck Salter

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