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Grey goo (alternatively spelled gray goo) is a hypothetical end-of-the-world scenario involving molecular nanotechnology in which out-of-control self-replicating robots consume all matter on Earth while building more of themselves, a scenario known as ecophagy ("eating the environment").
In a History Channel broadcast, grey goo is referred to in a futuristic doomsday scenario: "In a common practice, billions of nanobots are released to clean up an oil spill off the coast of Louisiana. However, due to a programming error, the nanobots devour all carbon based objects, instead of just the hydrocarbons of the oil. The nanobots destroy everything, all the while, replicating themselves. Within days, the planet is turned to dust
The marriage of nanoparticulates and SAMs provides direct access to a new class of nanostructured hybrid materials that are very useful as environmental sorbent materials, structural components, coatings, wetting control, friction and lubrication control, adhesion, bio-related applications (e.g. pharmaceutical controlled release, and biomedical implant materials), sensing/detection, environmental remediation and electronics materials.
Ricky, now working for Xymos and in charge of the fab plant, gives Jack a brief tour of the building, and explains that the company was under contract from the Department of Defense to create a swarm of nanorobots that act as a camera for reconnaissance and spying. The swarm is created by genetically modified E. coli bacteria, which create gamma assemblers from raw materials that, in turn, manufacture nanobots.
Jack comes up with a plan to destroy this new strain. Mae and Jack drink vials containing a form of phage that kills the nanobot-producing E. coli bacteria. The phage would protect them from infection. Jack then proceeds to take a sample of the phage and pour it into the sprinkler system and drench everyone with it. He tricks Mae into alerting Julia and the infected team. They set out to stop Jack. In the vicious struggle that ensues, Vince is killed and Jack, who barely escapes death multiple times, finally manages to dump the sample into the sprinkler system.