Smart lights, nonstick implants and 100th birthday of electronics at science & technology meeting

en from attracting platelets. Sometimes, the surfaces of the implant will adsorb the fibrinogen in a form in which it does not attract the platelets, but it's not yet known why, making it hard to design a surface to do that on purpose. Horbett will also report on another method that is easier to incorporate into the design of a surface: having the surface repel the fibrinogen. His team has tested adding a very water-soluble and water-attracting polymer, polyethylene oxide, to the polyurethanes that could make up an implantable object, or coating surfaces with a polymer that acts like polyethylene oxide. (Paper BI-MoA6, Monday, November 15, 2004, 3:40 PM, Room 210D)

November 16 marks the 100th birthday of electronics, which began with British scientist John Ambrose Fleming's 1904 invention of the first practical electronic device. Known as the thermionic diode, this first simple vacuum tube, containing only two electrodes, could be used to convert an alternating current (ac) to a direct current (dc). A special AVS session, taking place exactly 100 years after the day that Fleming applied for a British patent on the diode, will celebrate this seminal invention and the subsequent evolution of electronic components based on vacuum devices.

Fred Dylla of Jefferson Lab in Virginia (dylla@jlab.gov) will open the session by describing Fleming's invention and its connection to Thomson's late-19th century discovery of the electron and Edison's invention of the incandescent lamp. Paul Redhead of the National Research Council in Canada (redhead@magma.ca) traces both the rise and fall of the first electronics industry, based on the manufacture of vacuum tubes for radio, television and radar in the first half of the 20th century, and the vacuum technology used in electron tube manufacture. The vacuum tubes of th

Contact: Ben Stein
American Institute of Physics

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