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National Nanomanufacturing Network
InterNano is an open-source online information clearinghouse for the nanomanufacturing research and development (R&D) community in the United States. It is designed provide this community with an array of tools and collections relevant to its work and to the development of viable nanomanufacturing applications.
Updated: 43 min 45 sec ago
BNNT, LLC, a Newport News, Virginia start-up, began construction of the world’s first commercial factory dedicated to the manufacture of Fibril Boron Nitride Nanotubes, “Fibril BNNT™.” Boron nitride nanotubes are as strong as the better-known carbon nanotubes, but are much more heat resistant and much easier to synthesize in a high quality form.BNNT, LLC (the Company), is proud to announce that the new factory resulted from completed negotiations and closing on a Series A Financing transaction that will provide the Company the initial investment capital it needs to make Fibril BNNT™ commercially available.
Berkeley Lab Researchers Report First Fully Integrated Artificial Photosynthesis NanosystemIn the wake of the sobering news that atmospheric carbon dioxide is now at its highest level in at least three million years, an important advance in the race to develop carbon-neutral renewable energy sources has been achieved. Scientists with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have reported the first fully integrated nanosystem for artificial photosynthesis. While “artificial leaf” is the popular term for such a system, the key to this success was an “artificial forest.”
NRI Second Phase Features Multi-University Network Focused on Research Centers at SUNY's College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering, University of Nebraska-Lincoln and University of Texas at AustinGAITHERSBURG, Md. – The Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) today announced the second phase of the Nanoelectronics Research Initiative (NRI). For this phase, the SRC and NIST will provide a combined $5 million in annual funding for three multi-university research centers tasked with demonstrating, over the course of the next 10 years and beyond, a number of nonconventional, low-energy technologies that outperform current devices on critical applications.
One of President Obama’s top priorities is advanced manufacturing (http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/06/24/president-obama-launches-advanced-manufacturing-partnership) —the use of cutting-edge technologies to spur innovation in product development or manufacturing processes. As he said during his 2013 State of the Union address, President Obama wants to make America “a magnet for new jobs and manufacturing.” That’s why his FY14 budget (http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/budget/factsheet/making-america-a-magnet-for-manufacturing-jobs) includes $2.9 billion for advanced manufacturing R D, including $1 billion to launch a network of up to 15 manufacturing innovation institutes.
Promising Organic Electronics Thin Film Materials with Simple and Low Cost Manufacturing Process Dr. Taichi Ikeda (http://samurai.nims.go.jp/IKEDA_Taichi-e.html) (Senior Researcher) of the NIMS Electronic Functional Materials Group (Group Leader: Masayoshi Higuchi), Polymer Materials Unit (Unit Director: Izumi Ichinose) of the National Institute for Materials Science (President: Sukekatsu Ushioda), in joint research with Prof. Hans-Jürgen Butt group of the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (Germany), developed the world’s first supramolecular thiophene nanosheets, which is a 2-dimensional organic material with a thickness of 3.5nm.
The National Research Council recently released its Triennial Review of the National Nanotechnology Initiative (http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=18271), a required assessment of the National Nanotechnology Initiative (http://www.nano.gov/) (NNI) by the 21st Century Nanotechnology Research and Development Act of 2003. This document makes recommendations to the Nanoscale Science, Engineering, and Technology (NSET) Subcommittee (http://www.nano.gov/nset) and to the National Nanotechnology Coordination Office (NNCO) (http://www.nano.gov/about-nni/nnco) “that will improve the NNI's value for basic and applied research and for development of applications in nanotechnology that will provide economic, societal, and national security benefits to the United States”. The assessment of federal research initiatives; NNI stakeholders; metrics, definitions of success, and data; NNI planning, management, and coordination frameworks; and technology transfer and commercialization are discussed.
Researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and Kansas State University have demonstrated a spray-on mixture of carbon nanotubes and ceramic that has unprecedented ability to resist damage while absorbing laser light.*
Though they be but little, they are fierce. The most powerful batteries on the planet are only a few millimeters in size, yet they pack such a punch that a driver could use a cellphone powered by these batteries to jump-start a dead car battery – and then recharge the phone in the blink of an eye.
A new process for growing forests of manganese dioxide nanorods may lead to the next generation of high-performance capacitors.
Ditch the 3D glasses. Thanks to a simple plastic filter, mobile device users can now view unprecedented, distortion-free, brilliant 3D content with the naked eye. This latest innovation from TP and IMRE in Singapore is the first ever glasses-free 3D accessory that can display content in both portrait and landscape mode, and measures less than 0.1 mm in thickness.
As we continue to promote the economic and societal benefits of nanotechnology, advanced nanomanufacturing techniques are paving the road towards more integrated systems with increased functionality, scaled production platforms, and lower cost that will impact a broad range of industries. Nanomanufacturing has arguably had the largest impact in the area of flexible electronics and systems, affecting a range of product applications including displays, photovoltaics, lighting, energy storage, and printed electronics circuits. Perhaps the area of highest impact could be that in the area of devices interacting with the human body to extract specific biometrics for various purposes such as point-of-care health diagnostics, therapeutic treatment, or general activity monitoring (http://ideas.time.com/2013/03/14/10-big-ideas/slide/wear-your-doctor/). While these concepts have been around for decades, the key factors of technology push and market pull are now beginning to align in a manner that will accelerate and sustain the translational R D necessary for these applications to grow. From a market pull perspective, the increasing cost of hospital and medical care combined with the growth of an aging population will necessitate in-home monitoring and out-patient care. Nanotechnology will most certainly provide the market push to meet these challenges.
Real-time quality monitoring is critical towards improving yield and throughput of nanomanufacturing, and hence the scale-up production [1 (#1)]. Due to the current sensing limitations at nano-scale and confounding effects present during synthesis processes, measurement systems need to be augmented with quantitative models capable of tracking nanostructure growth evolution for nanomanufacturing process monitoring. Although atomistic Molecular Dynamics (MD)/ Monte Carlo (MC) simulation models are best suited to capture the complex atomistic motions and growth trajectories, they are mostly limited to the early stage simulation of nanomanufacturing processes due to the high computational overhead. Bukkapatnam’s group at Oklahoma State University developed a predictive analytics approach to accelerate MC models to track the synthesis of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) in a chemical vapor deposition (CVD) process. They realized one of the longest CNTs (~194 nm) from the fast atomistic simulations, and demonstrated that the prediction approach can lead to precise control of CNT lengths to within 1 nm variation of the specifications.Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are one of the promising nanostructure materials considered for industrial applications. While efforts have been made to address the optimization of the CVD and other processes used for CNT synthesis, the current production and yield rates need to be enhanced significantly to permit a much wider industrial applications. Precise control of CNT geometric features, such as length, during atomistic-scale growth processes is considered essential towards improving the quality and yield rates, and hence the large-scale industrial production. However, precise control of CNT length during the synthesis process remains a major industrial challenge. The time-scales over which these atomistic-scale growth processes (e.g., the chemisorption mechanisms) take place are much shorter (~ 10-12 sec) than those pertinent for conventional manufacturing processes. Therefore real-time process monitoring based on models that can track the nanostructure growth evolution is deemed essential for effective quality assurance. Various experimental studies, atomistic Molecular Dynamics (MD)/Monte Carlo (MC), and continuum simulations have been attempted to discern the pertinent growth mechanisms. Due to high costs associated with experimentation, the effects of chief process conditions influencing a nanostructure (here, CNT) growth cannot be effectively delineated. Short time-scale phenomena that drive CNT growth cannot be gathered due to sensing limitations (e.g., time resolution 1-103 ms) and confounding effects present during experiments. Atomistic MD/MC simulations have therefore been attempted to gather information on the growth process that cannot be gleaned from experiments. The current atomistic simulations are hampered by computational overhead, and are mostly limited to simulating the early stages of nanostructure growth. Continuum approximations investigated as an alternative to MD/MC models capture the variations in material concentration, but ignore the com¬plex potential functions associated with a CNT structure. Consequently, they do not track the growth tra¬jectory and the resulting geometric structures, especially over short space and time scales. Hence, a pressing need exists to speedup atomistic simulation models and augment them with experimental data to provide timely, accurate input for online monitoring.To this end, Bukkapatnam and co-authors investigated a complex system prediction approach [2 (#2), 3 (#3)] to accelerate MC simulation of the synthesis of vertically-aligned CNTs from a plasma-enhanced (PE)-CVD process. Their experimental studies suggest that the CNTs from this process were aligned vertically with fairly homogenous height distribution (see Figure 1). Consequently, the control of CNT lengths reduces to the monitoring of temporal growth of a single CNT under different synthesis conditions [3 (#3)]. In addition to advanced predictions, their approach also employs spatial coarse-graining as summarized in Figure 2 to further reduce the computational efforts for regular MC simulation. The majority (80-95%) of the computational overhead during an MC simulation is attributed to the relaxation process implemented at every growth step. If the final (near-equilibrium) state of the relaxation process, can be predicted in advance, and the relaxation process initialized therefrom, the number of MC moves and hence the computation time can be greatly reduced. Their investigations also suggested that CNT growth process exhibits nonlinear and recurring near-stationary dynamics, and a nonparametric local Gaussian process (LGP) prediction model can be effective for forecasting the final state ahead of the relaxation process [4 (#4)], Using this approach, they realized one of the longest CNTs (~ 194 nm) from atomistic simulations [2 (#2)]. Figure 3 (a) shows the CNT structures obtained from our simulation model at various addition steps. Consequently, their LGP based fast MC simulation model potentially can be employed to monitor and predict CNT length variations in real time during the synthesis process. They also defined a utility function was defined to facilitate decision making (“continue synthesis” or “stop synthesis”) under the scenarios of “under-growth” and “over-growth” using the predicted growth increments (Figure 3 (b)). References[1http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0740817X.2012.658315 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0740817X.2012.658315) [2http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cplett.2012.01.067 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cplett.2012.01.067)[3http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jmsy.2012.06.006 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jmsy.2012.06.006)[4http://link.aps.org/doi/10.1103/PhysRevE.82.056206 (http://link.aps.org/doi/10.1103/PhysRevE.82.056206)
A little wisdom to help develop a partnership between the new EPA and the nanotechnology community.Gina McCarthy's nomination to head the Environmental Protection Agency probably won't have been Senate confirmed before this article goes to press, but I don't think I'm going too far out on a limb to say, Welcome… and may I have a moment of your time?
We are excited to announce this year’s NanoBusiness Commercialization Association’s 2013 Top Large Corporation Nanotech Innovators. We will be reviewing this list at our 5th Annual Nanotech Commercialization Conference (http://nanoevent.org/) on Wednesday, April 10th at the Wake Forest Biotech Place in Winston Salem, NC. I will be interviewing Steve Waite, Managing Partner at SoundView Advisory, who will be discussing the achievements of these companies on the Nano Innovation panel. This panel will also include presentations from Paul Clayson, President CEO of HzO and Robert Burns, Senior Vice President of Harris Harris Group.
I recently had the opportunity to sample several facets of the electronics industry on the West Coast at the APEX conference (http://www.ipcapexexpo.org/html/main/default-2013.htm) in San Diego, the CMSE Space and Military conference (http://www.cti-us.com/cmsemain.htm) in Los Angeles, and the HDPUG (http://hdpug.org/) packaging meeting in Santa Clara. I also participated in the National Academies (http://www.nationalacademies.org/) Triennial Review of the National Nanotechnology Initiative (http://www.nano.gov/), the Center for High-Rate Nanomanufacturing (http://www.northeastern.edu/chn/) Industrial Advisory Board, and the iNEMI (http://www.inemi.org/) roadmap Research Committee gap analysis process developing longer-term Research Priorities for the electronics industry. Talk about drinking from a fire hose of information!
HGST (http://www.hgst.com/) (formerly Hitachi Global Storage Technologies and now a Western Digital company, NASDAQ: WDC) is leading the disk drive industry to the forefront in nanolithography, long the exclusive purview of semiconductor manufacturers, by creating and replicating minute features that will allow the doubling of hard disk drive (HDD) density in future disk drives.
Rolith, Inc. (http://www.rolith.com/), the leader in developing advanced nanostructured coatings and devices, today announces the successful installation of a 2nd-generation nanostructuring prototype tool built by SUSS MicroTec AG (http://www.suss.com/) under exclusive license from Rolith, Inc. – the RML-2 tool. This prototype is based on a disruptive nanolithography method (Rolling Mask Lithography – RMLTM) developed by Rolith, Inc. It enables users to create nanostructures over large areas – up to 1m x 0.3 m - of substrate materials in a high throughput and cost effective manner.
As the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network (NNIN) approaches the end of its initial 10 year term, it has clearly supported and catalyzed the growth of nanotechnology-enabled products. The NNIN user facilities have provided a key national resource where academic and industry researchers are able to access a wide range of state of the art fabrication processes and equipment to demonstrate proof of concept or prototype device technologies. In many instances, the NNIN serves to incubate innovation by enabling early stage R D activities that otherwise may not be possible due to resource limitations, particularly for small companies. As the model for a Next Generation Nanotechnology Infrastructure (NG-NI) is being developed to accommodate emerging nanomanufacturing methods, materials, and progress towards nanoscale systems, the National Science Foundation (NSF) and other stakeholders are contemplating what capabilities should included in order to continue and accelerate the development of nanotechnology-enabled products, and further expand the innovation pipeline.
Direct consumer exposure to nanomaterials is brought front and center to the public through discussions of the presence of nanomaterials in food and food packaging products. InterNano Contributing Editor Stacey Frederick identified a recently published report on these areas of nanomaterial applications. The report provides unique perspectives of the topic, along with important information resources.
LITX™ G700 graphene-based additive delivers step change performance vs. conventional additives for energy batteriesCabot Corporation (http://www.cabot-corp.com/GlobalGateway.aspx) announces the launch of LITX™ G700, the company’s first graphene-based additive for high energy density lithium-ion battery applications. Utilizing graphene material developed on the basis of a new technology platform, this new additive helps lithium-ion battery manufacturers achieve superior cell performance.Battery developers for applications in electronics and electric vehicles have reached the limit in reducing the loadings of conventional carbon additives. As a result, many are resorting to alternatives such as carbon nanotubes that add significant cost as well as manufacturing challenges.