Nano conveyor belt

This nanomachine looks like a conveyor belt, and it also transports stuff in a similar way. But there are a couple of significant differences: (a) Unlike macroscopic conveyor belts that the transported materials sit on top of the upper part of the belt, this nano conveyor can transport molecules in both parts of the belt (because it uses intermolecular forces to bind molecules). (b) The belt makes use of conformational changes of its molecular structure when it moves between the two driving nano wheels to bind and release molecules. Note that the "teeth" of the belt opens widely when they move into contacts with the driving wheels, whereas they close when they leave the wheels. This "open-close" mechanism of the binding pockets is responsible for transporting the green molecules from the mixture on the left compartment to the upper part of the right compartment.


The above image is just an animated gif file. Click the above button or this link to launch this interactive activity.

System requirements: You must have Java Version 5 or higher in order to run this program. Please go to java.com to get the latest Java software, if you are not sure.
Failed? Check out the FAQ for troubleshooting.


Get other models

Powered by Molecular Workbench
Copyright 2006, Concord Consortium.