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Archive for the 'MEMS' Category

Physicists suppress 'stiction' force that bedevils microscale machinery

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 19th, 2014

A possible top-down path to atomically precise manufacturing that passes through microscale machinery might be rendered easier because of recent progress in suppressing the Casimir force, which contributes to the ‘stiction’ problem often encountered with microelectromechanical systems.

Feynman 1984 talk on Tiny Machines on You Tube

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 27th, 2012

The conceptual history of nanotechnology is usually traced to a classic talk “There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom” that Richard Feynman gave on December 29th 1959 at the annual meeting of the American Physical Society at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), which was first published in Caltech Engineering and Science, Volume 23:5, February [...]

Will piezoelectric graphene provide options for nanoscale manipulation?

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 25th, 2012

Calculations using density functional theory have demonstrated that graphene can be made piezoelectric by adsorbing atoms or molecules on one surface, or by adsorbing different atoms or molecules on each surface.

Fast nanoscale 3D-printing (link to video)

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 12th, 2012

A new two-photon polymerization process enables fast printing of arbitrarily complex three dimensional objects with 100-nanometer resolution.

Will new piezoelectric materials lead to new tools for nanotechnology?

Posted by Jim Lewis on November 27th, 2011

Will the integration of a single-crystal material with “giant” piezoelectric properties onto silicon make possible scanning probe microscopes on a chip?

Carbon nanotube muscles could propel future medical nanorobots (video)

Posted by Jim Lewis on October 31st, 2011

Yarn woven from carbon nanotubes provides a thousand times more rotation than is obtained from other artificial muscles, and could be made into motors to provide propulsion for micrometer-sized medical nanorobots.

Statistical noise characterized in interactions of atoms with nanomachines

Posted by Jim Lewis on June 3rd, 2011

The interactions of xenon atoms with a nanoelectromechanical system have now been measured to characterize the statistical noise caused by atomic fluctuations.

Researchers use Nanofabrication Techniques to bring us closer to Quantum Computing

Posted by Jim Lewis on January 18th, 2011

Nanofabrication methods were used to observe a rare state of matter known as a ‘half-quantum vortex’, which may bring a solution to the decoherence hurdle to quantum computing.

Nanotechnology device harvests wasted energy

Posted by Jim Lewis on October 15th, 2010

An energy cell containing a lead zirconate titanate cantilever coated with a carbon nanotube film uses nanotechnology to produce electricity from scavenged light and thermal energy.

The worlds smallest snowman

Posted by J. Storrs Hall on December 4th, 2009

The worlds smallest snowman. from nanowerk     The snowman is 10 µm across, 1/5th the width of a human hair. The snowman was made from two tin beads used to calibrate electron microscope astigmatism. The eyes and smile were milled using a focused ion beam, and the nose, which is under 1 µm wide, [...]

IEEE Spectrum: Radios With Micromachined Resonators

Posted by J. Storrs Hall on December 1st, 2009

IEEE Spectrum: Radios With Micromachined Resonators.     It’s likely that better mechanical components, and the cognitive-radio techniques they enable, will usher in the next wave of mobile telephony by giving our cellphones access to much more spectrum. These phones will operate in multiple bands, provide greater data throughput, and minimize if not eliminate the [...]

Koreans Show Feasibility of Room Temperature Version of IBM Millipede Super High Density Memory

Posted by J. Storrs Hall on September 18th, 2009

Koreans Show Feasibility of Room Temperature Version of IBM Millipede Super High Density Memory.

Nanoscale Wear

Posted by J. Storrs Hall on September 10th, 2009

One of the major problems for micromachines, much less nanomachines, is wear. The phenomenon of stiction combines the two worst aspects of surface-to-surface interaction — a high coefficient of friction and a locally-generated high applied force — to cause enormous problems. At the very smallest scale, once we gain complete control over atomic configuration, superlubricity [...]

Discovery of repulsive Casimir forces might eliminate friction as a concern in nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on January 14th, 2009

A newly discovered repulsive quantum mechanical force could be useful for nanotech applications by enabling a type of quantum levitation.

Fast and precise control of AFM tips may enable nanotechnology memory devices

Posted by Jim Lewis on November 20th, 2008

Arrays of atomic force probe tips are promising nanotech approaches to denser, faster, cheaper memories.

Calculating the role of Casimir forces in nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on October 3rd, 2008

Swedish scientists have developed a computer program to calculate Casimir forces between various types of nanostructured materials, which may help to determine whether significant friction problems exist in specific designs.

Nanotechnology reveals communications among immune system cells

Posted by Jim Lewis on September 9th, 2008

Nanotech contributions to the development of medical science now include devices that can decipher the chemical communications among individual cells. A new microfluidic device called a multi-trap nanophysiometer promises to be particularly useful in elucidating the communications among individual cells of the immune system, and perhaps eventually revealing what goes wrong during the immune system’s [...]

Graphene provides extraordinarily stiff beams for nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on September 2nd, 2008

Add to graphene’s record-breaking strength the discovery that graphene beams are unexpectedly stiff.

Weighing atoms with nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on July 31st, 2008

A double-walled carbon nanotube forms a device able to weigh a single atom of gold.

Another way to manipulate individual DNA molecules

Posted by Jim Lewis on July 15th, 2008

Individual DNA molecules can also be manipulated by optical tweezers and microfabricated structures.