Wednesday, June 21, 2006

US Patent 7063753 - Magnetic Alignment of Nanotubes

In order to take advantage of the conductive or semiconductive properties of nanotubes it is often necessary to align a plurality of nanotubes since the conductive/semiconductive property is anisotropic (i.e. directionality dependent). This patent provides a mechanism to provide such alignment using magnetic atoms attached to nanotubes to regulate the alignment of nanotubes in a magnetic field. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method comprising: creating a plurality of nanotubes, the nanotubes each having a substantially cylindrical wall and a plurality of magnetic atoms that are attached to the wall; aligning the nanotubes on a grid having metal lines, such that each of the nanotubes has a first portion that overlaps a metal grid line and a second portion that does not overlap the metal grid line; and removing the second portions.