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GlobalSpec: DirectU2 Nano Technology
March 19, 2010  
Industry Trends & Events . . .
Nanotech Provides Eco Solution

Nanotech Provides Eco Solution Amid discussions about the risks of nanotechnology, two new research projects suggest that it may actually provide a solution to certain environmental and health risks. Silver possesses antimicrobial properties and finds broad application in everything from countertops to textiles. Of course, that same wide usage just increases the risk of heavy metal contamination. Now, University of Helsinki chemists have demonstrated that an acrylate polymer can stabilize silver nanoparticles by binding to them. Meanwhile, McGill University chemists have used nanomagnets as catalysts, replacing toxic solvents. The particles can be easily removed after catalysis and reused as many as a dozen times.

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Multi-layer Fluidic Manifolds
ALine, Inc.

Multi-layer Fluidic Manifolds ALine's precision laser cut and laminate bonding capabilities support complex multi-layer manifolds fabricated from high quality optical and biocompatible acrylics.

We offer a cost effective alternative to diffusion bonded devices where disposability and low cost prototyping is desired. Scalable to 100,000 devices per year. Contact info@alineinc.com for a custom quote.

Ultra-smooth Patterned Metal Films
University of Minnesota

Ultra-smooth Patterned Metal Films University of Minnesota researchers have developed a proprietary process to obtain ultra-smooth nanometer sized pure metal films with varying structural features including grooves, bumps, pyramids, ridges, and holes. The high throughput, reproducible method achieves roughness <0.4 nm and limits implantable ions for improved performance. A reusable mold reduces production costs.

Research & Development . . .
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Tiny Bubbles

Tiny Bubbles Microtextured surfaces exhibit water-repellant behavior because the nanocavities attract nanobubbles that inhibit the entry of liquids. Brookhaven National Laboratories physicists patterned a substrate with 20-nm-wide cavities packed into a hexagonal array, then coated it with surfactant. Using transmission x-ray scattering techniques, they discovered that nanobubbles could fill parabolic cavities to form a nearly flat meniscus. As a result, water droplets have less contact with the substrate and roll off easily.

Longer Lasting Legs (and Arms)

Longer Lasting Legs (and Arms) Adding carbon nanotubes (CNTs) to zirconia (ZrO2) ceramic produces a prosthetic material robust enough to last as long as 150 years, say Spanish researchers. That's more than an order of magnitude longer than is typical. They increased the density of the ZrO2 matrix with the CNTs, coating the nanotubes with zirconia nanoparticles and sintering the resultant material to improve bonding and enhance load transfer.

Materials & Structured Products . . .
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Silicon Strengthens Diamond-like Materials

Silicon Strengthens Diamond-like Materials Adding silicon to nanostructured diamond-like carbon produces a near-frictionless material that can form highly wear-resistant tips for atomic force microscopy. The new material is roughly three orders of magnitude more robust than the silicon-oxide cantilever tips used today. Researchers used the ultra-hard material to study friction at the nanoscale, discovering that the dominant wear mechanism is atom by atom at a rate of one per micron.

Hydrogels Kill Cancer

Hydrogels Kill Cancer Nanoscale hydrogels can reprogram cancer cell behavior, turning off runaway growth and encouraging cell death, Georgia Institute of Technology researchers have shown. The functionalized hydrogels transport siRNA into the cancer cells, where it reduces the level of epidermal-growth-factor receptors (EGFR). Hydrogel encapsulation increases the lifetime and efficacy of the siRNA so that the cancer cell cannot recover from the attacks. Want to know more? Read the complimentary paper.

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Accelerated Surface Area and Porosimetry
Analyzer

Micromeritics

Accelerated Surface Area and Porosimetry Analyzer Micromeritics ASAP® 2020 Surface Area and Porosimetry Analyzer can be used to determine the microporosity and hydrogen storage capacity of nano materials. Hydrogen adsorption isotherms can easily be obtained on MOFs, zeolites, and activated carbons. With particle density information, average particle size of dry aggregated nanoparticles can also be calculated.

Titanate Nano Powders (Barium, Strontium
Titanate)

TPL, Inc.

Titanate Nano Powders (Barium, Strontium Titanate) TPL offers a range of titanate powders with controlled size and chemistry. The nano-size powders are produced via an aqueous, low temperature process that allows for binary and tertiary oxide compositions with controlled stoichiometries. The particle sizes (50 to 400 nm) are ideal for ultra-thin dielectric layers in composites and ceramic capacitors.

Devices . . .
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Paper Batteries and Power Dressing

Paper Batteries and Power Dressing Special inks containing nanoparticles can turn textiles and paper into energy storage devices or even conductors, say Stanford University researchers. The development opens up the prospect of wallpaper that stores power or jackets that charge mobile devices. Meanwhile, organic, piezoelectric nanofibers produced by University of California, Berkeley engineers can actually generate power from motion. The group uses electrospinning techniques to fabricate the polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) fibers, which achieved almost 22% conversion efficiencies.

Nanomesh Transforms Transistors

Nanomesh Transforms Transistors Forming graphene into nanomeshes can force the zero-bandgap material to behave as a semiconductor, opening up new possibilities for microelectronics. University of California, Los Angeles researchers produced the mesh by cutting holes as close as 5 nm apart in graphene films using block copolymer lithography. Room-temperature transistors fabricated using the nanomesh handled currents two orders of magnitude higher than current graphene devices; the group controlled the on/off ratio of the transistors by adjusting hole spacing.

Manufacturing & Commercialization . . .
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Netting Better Batteries

Netting Better Batteries Anodes formed of titanium disilicide nanonets coated with silicon promise to dramatically improve the performance of lithium-ion batteries. Boston College chemists report the structures achieved specific capacities in excess of 1000 mAh/g at an 8400 mA/g charge/discharge rate, fading only 0.1% over 80 cycles. Next up, trying the nanonets as cathodes.

Drawing Thinner Lines

Drawing Thinner Lines As optical lithography moves closer and closer to its end point, the search is on for substitutions like dip-pen lithography. Using a combination of nanoscale tips and surface tension, the technique directs self-assembling molecules to produce lines as narrow as 25 nm. It's an interesting method to produce not only the electronics of the future but other nanostructures. Watch the Webcast to find out more details.

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NOTIO™ Nano-crystal Structure Controlled Elastomer
Mitsui Chemicals America, Inc.

NOTIO™ Nano-crystal Structure Controlled Elastomer  NOTIO™ is a flexible, low density, transparent elastomer with excellent heat resistance. The resin is not cross- linked and demonstrates superior elasticity. NOTIO's crystalline and amorphous structure (morphology) is controlled at the nano scale, allowing for the realization of properties that cannot be achieved with conventional elastomers.

BioSpec-nano UV Spectrophotometer

Shimadzu Scientific Instruments, Inc.

BioSpec-nano UV Spectrophotometer Shimadzu's BioSpec-nano is a dedicated spectrophotometer for the quantitation of nucleic acids. Life Science researchers can conserve precious samples and obtain accurate and reproducible results made possible by an automated precision drive mechanism. More details available here.

Careers & Commentary . . .
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How Will Nanofactories Change the Market?

How Will Nanofactories Change the Market? Nanofactories promise to change the competitive marketplace, the way we handle intellectual property, and even the sociological balance of the world. Find out more in this interview with Christopher Phoenix, co-founder and research director for Center for Responsible Nanotechnology.

Diversions . . .
Don't Get the Knack

Don't Get the Knack Worried that you've got the Knack? Watch this video for important self-diagnostic information. Medical science is doing all it can to find a cure, but the prospects don't look good. You'll just have to live with it. But there is hope! There are lots of Web sites that can help you cope: check out Hack N Mod and Make, for starters!

Share Your Thoughts . . .
About This Month's Topic

About This Month's Topic Can Medical Design Influence Healthcare Costs?

Can medical design engineers do something to help reform healthcare and reduce costs?


Join the discussion...


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March 19, 2010 - Volume 5 Issue 3
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