ChevronTexaco MolecularDiamond Technologies Produces Research Quantities of Diamond Molecules From Petroleum
Production Milestone Follows Discovery of the New Class of Molecular Building Blocks
RICHMOND, Calif., May 3, 2004 -- ChevronTexaco MolecularDiamond Technologies, a unit of ChevronTexaco Technology Ventures LLC, announced today that it has successfully been able to produce gram quantities of a new class of molecular building blocks called higher diamondoids. These diamondoids, the discovery of which was announced previously, are available immediately for application research and development.
"This is an important step in furthering advances in the fast-growing, actively funded field of nanotechnology," said Waqar Qureshi, Ph.D. and vice president of ChevronTexaco Technology Ventures. "Having a pure nanomaterial produced in sufficient quantities is essential to the advancement of commercial application development."
The higher diamondoids produced by ChevronTexaco MolecularDiamond Technologies have four or more crystal cages of the diamond lattice. MolecularDiamond Technologies has also produced large quantities of the valuable lower diamondoids, diamantane and triamantane. These are diamond molecules with two and three crystal lattice cages, respectively. Although di- and triamantane can be synthesized in laboratories they have until now been produced in small quantities at very high cost.
Researchers working on MolecularDiamond Technologies diamondoid production used core process technologies to scale-up production of diamondoids from petroleum in quantities sufficient for application research and development. As a result, for the first time new research in various fields can be conducted with the isolation and production of higher diamondoids. Higher diamondoids have exceptional properties which make them a potential valuable material for research in pharmaceuticals, optics, and microelectronics.
One of the co-discoverers of higher diamondoids in petroleum, Bob Carlson, Ph.D., said, "Nanotechnology researchers have for years imagined what they might be able to make with higher diamondoids, but until now they have been able to explore those ideas only with molecular simulations studies. We can now conduct applied and basic research with these new nanomaterials. We are on-track with the scale-up plans announced last year, and invite parties interested in researching, developing applications, and commercializing these materials to contact us."
Higher diamondoids begin with the tetramantanes (four diamond crystal cages). MolecularDiamond Technologies has isolated separately gram quantities of two different structures of tetramantane molecules and one pentamantane molecule (five diamond crystal cages) in pure crystalline form. Tetramantanes and pentamantanes have not been available for application development until now. Also available are research quantities of other higher diamondoids, up to heptamantane.
Areas of interest for application development as well as basic characterization appear on the MolecularDiamond Technologies web site at www.moleculardiamond.com.
Note to Editor:
ChevronTexaco first published the discovery of higher diamondoids in Science magazine in January 2003. Interests in these molecules arise from the fact that diamond molecules possess superb characteristics for nanotechnology: rigidity, durability, multiple shapes and sizes, derivatizability, and potential for precise self-assembly.
About ChevronTexaco Technology Ventures LLC
ChevronTexaco Technology Ventures LLC, a division of ChevronTexaco Corp., identifies, develops, and commercializes emerging technologies and new energy systems that have the potential to create economic value for the company, while at the same time offering the potential of reduced environmental impact. This includes investments in hydrogen-related technologies, advanced energy storage technologies, renewables and nanomaterials.
Cautionary Statement Relevant to Forward-Looking Information for the Purpose of "Safe Harbor" Provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.
This news release contains forward-looking statements about the commercial potential of higher diamondoid materials and the company's intention to make them available for research and development based on management's current expectations, estimates and projections. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and other factors, some of which are beyond our control and are difficult to predict. Among the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially are enforceability of the company's patents; actions of the company's competitors; and the ability of the company to negotiate third party licenses on acceptable terms. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Unless legally required, ChevronTexaco Technology Ventures LLC undertakes no obligation to update publicly any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Updated: May 2004