The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office granted patent number 7,005,378, entitled Processes for Fabricating Conductive Patterns Using Nanolithography as a Patterning Tool. The patented technology, which is especially useful in the fabrication of micro- and nano-electronics, concerns a lithographic method using coated Atomic Force Microscope tips to deposit metallic precursors which are converted to metallic nanostructures with heat.
In addition, patent number 7,034,854, Methods and Apparatus for Ink Delivery to Nanolithographic Probe Systems, describes a system of delivering patterning compounds to tips for DPN patterning. These microfluidic and inkwell designs allow significant increases in speed and reliability of the patterning process.
Finally, patent number 7,060,977, Nanolithographic Calibration Methods, describes a method of controlling Scanning Probe Microscope (SPM) devices to calibrate the size of features created by DPN patterning. The feature employs a number of software algorithms and employs control of environmental conditions and patterning speed.
"This latest trio of patents represents a powerful blend of ink, instrumentation, and software technology, all important aspects in the commercialization of the DPN process. We are dedicating significant resources to protecting and strengthening NanoInk's intellectual property. Additional patents will be issuing in the near future," said Dr. Cedric Loiret-Bernal, NanoInk's Chief Executive Officer. "With these and future patents, we will continue to explore the applications of DPN technology to drive the development of high value end products."
NanoInk's growing patent portfolio is composed of over 100 total documents in 27 families, including both owned and licensed properties. The DPN process was first developed by Professor Chad Mirkin at the Northwestern University Nanotechnology Institute. It is a patented process used to build nanometer scale structures and patterns by literally drawing materials directly onto a surface. DPN users can build at resolutions ranging from many micrometers down to 15 nanometers, using virtually any material. This combination of ultrahigh resolution and material flexibility makes for numerous commercial applications.
NanoInk, Inc. is an emerging growth technology company specializing in nanometer-scale manufacturing and applications development for the life science and semiconductor industries. With DPN®, a patented and proprietary nanofabrication technology that allows for unmatched flexibility and accuracy, and also its high-resolution Nanoencryption technology, NanoInk is able to offer its pharmaceutical customers innovative solutions to fight counterfeiting and illegal diversion of blockbuster pharmaceutical products. Other key applications include nanoscale additive repair and nanoscale rapid prototyping. Located in the new Illinois Science + Technology Park, north of Chicago, NanoInk currently has over 100 issued or pending patents and patent applications filed worldwide and has licensing agreements with Northwestern University, Stanford University, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Georgia Institute of Technology. For more information on products and services offered by NanoInk, Inc., see www.nanoink.net.
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