Thursday, October 29, 2009

US Patent 7608824 - Doped carbon nanostructrure for infrared imaging

This patent from UT-Battelle teaches the use of the field emission properties of carbon nanotubes to achieve infrared imaging. Claim 1 reads:

1. A detector for detecting infrared photons comprising:

at least one anode;

at least one cathode further comprising a substrate electrically connected to a plurality of doped carbon nanostructures; and

bias circuitry for applying an electric field between said anode and said cathode such that when infrared photons are absorbed by said nanostructures the emitted field current is modulated for use in a readout portion of said circuitry.


US Patent 7608556 - CNT catalysts for redox reactions

This patent from E.I. duPont has priority going back to 2004 and includes some basic claims to carbon nanotube assisted redox reactions. Claim 1 reads:

1. A process to catalyze a redox reaction comprising:

contacting at least one carbon nanotube in solution with:

a) an oxidizing agent and an oxidizable compound or

b) a reducing agent and a reducible compound

wherein the redox reaction is catalyzed.

Related prior art not considered during the examination includes the article "Spontaneous Reduction of Metal Ions on the Sidewalls of Carbon Nanotubes" published in the Journal of Applied Chemical Society in 2002.


US Patent 7608240 - Cancer treatment with boron nitride nanotubes

Subjecting boron atoms to low energy neutrons has been found to disintegrate malignant cells. This patent from the University of Arkansas teaches the use of boron nitride nanotubes to achieve this effect for cancer treatment. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for treating cancer, said method comprising:

a) attaching a first antibody species to nanovessels to form a nanovessel-antibody composite species;

b) introducing said nanovessel-antibody composite species into a mammal such that said nanovessel-antibody composite species selectively targets at least one type of cancerous cell; and

c) exploding said nanovessels using at least one frequency of ultrasonic waves; wherein said at least one frequency of ultrasonic waves is adjusted to be absorbed by said nanovessels;

d) attaching a second antibody species to BN nanostructures to form a BN nanostructure-antibody composite species, wherein said first antibody species and said second antibody species are selected from the group consisting of the same antibody species, different antibody species, and combinations thereof;

e) administering said BN nano structure-antibody composite species to said mammal such that said BN nanostructure-antibody composite species selectively targets at least one tumor within said mammal; and

f) activating at least some of the boron atoms in said BN nanostructure-antibody composite species.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

US Patent 7607762 - CNT anti-wetting nozzle plate

In inkjet printers it is important for the surface of the printhead to be resistant to wetting in order to avoid misdirected ink drops from printing nozzles. This patent from Fujifilm teaches a carbon nanotube layer which provides such anti-wetting in addition to good durability. Claim 1 reads:

1. A nozzle plate comprising:

a nozzle through which liquid is ejected;

a nozzle forming surface in which the nozzle is provided; and

a liquid-repellency layer which is provided on the nozzle forming surface, the liquid-repellency layer including a carbon nanotube layer.


US Patent 7607584 - Nanoparticle biometrics

This patent from IBM teaches a system using luminescent semiconductor nanoparticles (i.e. nanocrystals or quantum dots) in biometrics. Claim 1 reads:

1. An identity verification system comprising:

a combination of indicia that represents measurable characteristics mapped into a characteristic signature, wherein the measurable characteristics comprise a luminescent characteristic and a biometric characteristic, wherein the biometric characteristic is integrated with the luminescent characteristic to create a unique verification image; and

an indicia detector for detecting the characteristic signature and verifying authenticity of the characteristic signature, wherein the combination of indicia comprises colloidal nanoparticles having a characteristic emission spectrum comprising a plurality of lines at characteristic wavelengths with characteristic intensity ratio, wherein the indicia detector detects the characteristic emission spectrum.

Some prior art not cited during the patent prosecution but which may be relevant to the claims of this patent include:

US Patent 6617583- "A novel encoding system and methods for determining the location and/or identity of a particular item or component of interest is provided. In particular, the present invention utilizes a "barcode" comprising one or more sizes of semiconductor nanocrystals (quantum dots) having characteristic spectral emissions, to either "track" the location of a particular item of interest or to identify a particular item of interest. " (from abstract)

US Patent 6633370-"Quantum dots, semiconductor nanocrystals and semiconductor particles used as fluorescent coding elements" (title)

US Patent 7077329- "Spectral coding by fluorescent semiconductor nanocrystals for document identification and security applications" (title)


US Patent 7607455 - Nanofiber MEMS pump

This patent from IBM takes advantage of the flexibility and electrical conductivity of carbon nanotube mats to create an electrically actuated microfluidic pump. Claim 1 reads:

1. A micro-valve having an inlet and an outlet, said micro-valve comprising:

a lower chamber having a bottom wall and sidewalls and an upper chamber having a top wall and sidewalls, a bottom of said upper chamber separated from a top of said lower chamber by a porous, flexible and electrically conductive mat of nano-fibers;

an opening in said top wall of said upper chamber, said opening open to said upper chamber;

an impervious valve seal on said mat of nano-fibers, said valve seal below and self-aligned to said opening; an electrically conductive plate under and electrically isolated from said bottom wall of said lower chamber; a first electrical contact to said conductive plate; and

a second electrical contact to said mat of nano-fibers.


Sunday, October 25, 2009

US Patent 7605466 - Adhesive sheet sealed MEMS package

The manufacture of micromechanical devices can be particularly susceptible to contamination from moisture and small particles which can cause sticking and obstruct movement in the microdevices. This patent from GE teaches a packaging process for pre-singulated MEMS dies using an adhesive sheet that avoids such contamination. Claim 1 reads:

1. A MEMS unit comprising:

a MEMS device on a substrate;

a cover;

an adhesive sheet comprising cutouts for the MEMS device;

the adhesive sheet disposed between the substrate and the cover;

standoff posts spanning between the substrate and the cover; and

the substrate, the adhesive sheet, and the cover bonded together in registration;

whereby the MEMS device is sealed and protected from contamination.


Thursday, October 22, 2009

US Patent 7605408 - Electron wave reconfigurable circuitry

As Moore's Law becomes more difficult to fulfill there is some growing interest in reconfigurable computing and dynamic circuit elements such as the memristor which provides memory dependent effects in nanoelectronic devices. This patent from Nokia teaches using a graphene material layer to achieve another variation of reconfigurable electronics in which the graphene also produces a memory effect used to control electron wave transmission probability. Claim 1 reads:

1. An apparatus, comprising:

a nanoscale material layer; and

a programmable element in close proximity to at least a first section of the nanoscale material layer;

wherein the programmable element is programmable to a first state to interfere with an electron wave in at least the first section of the nanoscale material layer in a first manner, and

programmable to a second state to interfere with the electron wave in a second manner.


US Patent 7605328 - CIGS nanoparticle photovoltaics

Nanosolar is a company which has pioneered flexible solar cells based on nanomaterials. This is their latest patent which describes a web coating process to provide cheaper production of solar cells based on copper indium gallium selenide. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for forming an active layer coating, the method comprising the steps of:

forming a molten mixture of one or more metals of group IIIA and metallic nanoparticles containing elements of group IB;

subsequently depositing the molten mixture on a substrate to form a film; and

processing the film in one or more steps to form a photovoltaic absorber layer.


US Patent 7605188 - Nanographite polymer foam

This patent from Owens Corning teaches a low-density foam insulation which utilizes thin films of graphite. Claim 1 reads:

1. A multi-functional polymeric foam material comprising:

a) a polymer;

b) a blowing agent; and

c) multi-layered nano-graphite having a size in at least one dimension less than about 100 nanometers, said multi-layered nano-graphite being chemically modified to include carboxyl and phenolic hydroxyl functional groups, wherein other dimensions of said multi-layered nano-graphite are less than about 20 microns.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

US Patent 7604790 - CNT purification using sulfidation

This patent from Samsung teaches a way to remove carbon impurities formed during carbon nanotube production based on a sulfidation reaction. An article (link) from 2005 from the inventors explains how the process improves the characteristics of nanotube field effect transistors. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of removing carbonaceous impurities in a carbon nanotube, the method comprising:

preparing sulfur and carbon nanotubes in a sealed space, the sulfur being in a solid state; and

sulfiding a surface of the carbon nanotubes to remove carbonaceous impurities formed on the carbon nanotubes,

wherein the sulfiding includes heating the sulfur and the carbonaceous impurities above a temperature to induce a sulfidation reaction between the sulfur and the carbonaceous impurities and removing carbon disulfide (CS2) resulting from the sulfidation reaction of sulphuric evaporated gas and the carbonaceous impurities formed on the surface of the carbon nanotubes.


US Patent 7604129 - Nanoporous LLC polymer membrane

This patent from the University of Colorodo teaches a nanofiltration membrane formed from a liquid crystal material capable of self-assembly. Claim 1 reads:

1. A composite membrane comprising:

a porous support; and

a lyotropic liquid crystal (LLC) polymer porous membrane attached to the support,

the LLC membrane having a thickness less than about 1 micron and a pore structure having hexagonally ordered, cylindrical nanopores.


US Patent 7604049 - Graphitic nanoflake composites for oil field exploration

This patent from Schlumberger Technology Corporation teaches a polymer composite including graphitic nanoparticles in order to enhance the reliability and lifespan for sealants and insulation used in oil extraction apparatus. Claim 1 reads:

1. An apparatus comprising:

(a) a polymeric matrix formed into an oilfield element; and

(b) a plurality of expanded graphitic nanoflakes and/or nanoplatelets having an expansion ratio ranging from about 40:1 to about 300:1 dispersed in the polymeric matrix,

wherein the expanded graphitic nanoflakes and/or nanoplatelets are selected from the group consisting of expanded graphite, exfoliated graphite, and compositions based on boron and nitrogen, and mixtures and combinations thereof.


Sunday, October 18, 2009

US Patent 7602614 - Nanoparticle interconnect lines within electronic module

This patent from Infineon teaches a way to form wiring connections within the body of a plastic circuit board carrier using nanoparticles. Claim 1 reads:

1. An electronic module comprising:

a first and a second component with connections on connection sides of the components;

a wiring block made of plastic with contact pads on its outer sides and with lines comprising nanoparticles with carbonized short-circuit paths between the nanoparticles in its volume, the lines electrically connecting the contact pads on the outer sides to one another according to a circuit layout, the first component and the second component being arranged on different non-opposite outer sides of the wiring block and the connections being connected to the contact pads.


US Patent 7602207 - Quantum dot cellular automata

Quantum dot cellular automata is a proposed nanoelectronic circuit architecture in which regular arrays of 2x2 quantum dot cells are used to transfer and process information. This approach avoids the problem of current leakage due to electron tunneling as the scale size of electronic devices are reduced. This patent from The Lutherian University Association teaches a configuration to facilitate the flow of binary signals for crossed quantum dot cellular wires. Claim 1 reads:

1. A quantum-dot cellular automata device, comprising:

a first line of normal cells controlled by a first clock;

a second line of normal cells arranged substantially parallel to said first line of normal cells and controlled by said first clock; and

a third line of normal cells substantially orthogonal to said first and second lines of normal cells and connected to said first line of normal cells at a first common cell and to said second line of normal cells at a second common cell, said third line of normal cells having a first neighbor region located adjacent to said first common cell and controlled by a second clock and a second neighbor region located adjacent to said second common cell controlled by said second clock.


US Patent 7602097 - Elastic nanotube shaft for MEMS

A variety of designs for micromirror hinges have been proposed for applications in digital displays and optical switching networks. However, the repeated torsional deformation of these micromirrors cause fatigue in the hinge structure which reduces the reliable life expectancy of the device. This patent from Fujitsu teaches forming the deformable shaft of a MEMS device from carbon nanotubes to reduce the problem of fatigue. Claim 1 reads:

1. A movable device provided with

bottom electrodes and a basic conductive layer fixed to a substrate,

an elastic shaft of a carbon nanotube with a bottom end fixed on said basic conductive layer and standing up, and

a top structure including a top electrode spaced away from said bottom electrode and fixed to a top end of said elastic shaft,

wherein when applying voltage between a said bottom electrode and said top electrode, said top electrode displaces relatively to said bottom electrodes within an allowable range of elastic deformation of said elastic shaft.


Friday, October 16, 2009

Bentham Science Publishers - Recent Patents on Nanotechnology

The journal Recent Patents on Nanotechnology may be of interest to readers of this blog. This journal publishes review articles by experts on recent patents on nanotechnology. A selection of important and recent patents on nanotechnology is also included in the journal.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

US Patent 7602030 - HfTaO nanolaminate dielectric

In order to continue the scalability of transistors predicted by Moore's Law there is increased investigation in new materials for the gate dielectric. This patent from Micron Technology teaches a new dielctric film material of hafnium tantalum oxide having a relative dielectric constant of 16-26 (compared to 3.9 for SiO2). Claim 1 reads:

1. An electronic device comprising:

a substrate;

a dielectric layer disposed above substrate, the dielectric layer having a hafnium tantalum oxide layer, the hafnium tantalum oxide being a bimetal oxide (HfxTayOz x>0, y>0, z>0), the hafnium tantalum oxide layer structured as one or more monolayers; and

a conductive layer on and contacting the dielectric layer.


US Patent 7601650 - CNT tip with protective layer

This patent from Carbon Design Innovations teaches a process to improve the stabilization of carbon nanotubes used as the tips of atomic force microscopes. Claim 1 reads:

1. A process for fabricating a carbon nanotube (CNT) device, the process comprising:

forming a CNT on a substrate using a first thermal CVD process, said CNT having a first end and a second end, said second end of said CNT coupled to said substrate;

forming a protective layer covering said CNT, wherein said protective layer is defined based on an intended application of said CNT device; and

removing a controlled portion of said protective layer to expose a desired length of said first end of said CNT, wherein said desired length is defined based on the intended application of said CNT device.


US Patent 7601406 - Tranparent conductive nanopowder

Cima Nanotech is a company focusing on the production of improved coatings for LCDs and solar cells. This patent teaches silver nanoparticles in such coatings. Claim 1 reads:

1. An article comprising

(a) a substrate and

(b) a transparent and electrically conductive coating in the form of a continuous network-like pattern of electrically conductive, interconnected traces that are formed from self-assembled nano-particles that define randomly shaped cells, the interconnected traces being visible with a light microscope on a surface of the substrate, wherein the coating is transparent to light at wavelengths in the range of 400 to 700 nm.


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

US Patent 7601262 - Nanoalumina submicron filter

This patent from Argonide teaches a nanofibrous filtration system useful for biological separation processes. Claim 1 reads:

1. A fibrous electropositive sorbent comprising a blended mixture of non-spherical nano alumina particles comprising AlOOH blended with and a second matrix solid, wherein said electropositive sorbent adsorbs at least one electropositive particle from a fluid.


US Patent 7601205 - CNT field emission air filter

Ionic air filters are common but see limited use on the small scale due to the high voltage necessary to charge air. This patent from IBM teaches a carbon nanotube ionization air filter which may improve the energy efficiency and lead to scalability of such devices. Claim 1 reads:

1. An electrostatic, airborne particulate precipitator comprising:

a housing unit;

a first conductive electrode located in said housing unit;

a second conductive electrode located in said housing unit at a distance from said first conductive electrode, said first and second conductive electrodes comprising poles of an electrostatic field; and

a carbon nanotube formed on said second conductive electrode, wherein said carbon nanotube comprises a shape sufficient to ionize gas in said housing unit.


US Patent 7600667 - CNT reinforced solder caps

In order to deal with increased heat stresses in IC solder connections this patent from Intel teaches the incorporation of carbon nanotubes in a solder. Claim 1 reads:

1. A process comprising:

thermo compression transfer bonding a carbon nanotube-solder (CNT-S) composite particle from a transfer substrate to a solder bump.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

US Patent 7598723 - Resonance detection nanoantenna

This patent from Clemson University teaches a method of using micro- or nano-cantilevered structures to produce induced electric fields for resonance detection. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of detecting resonance in an element comprising:

locating a counter electrode a predetermined distance from an element such that the element and the counter electrode are in a non-contact mode, wherein the element comprises a semi-conductive material or a carbon nanotube and has a length of less than about 500 μm and a width of less than about 50 μm;

inducing an electrostatic force on the element by applying a first electric signal to the counter electrode;

generating a second electric signal at the semi-conductive material or the carbon nanotube in direct response to the induced electrostatic force;

directly examining the second electric signal and;

ascertaining the presence of at least one subharmonic or superharmonic of the resonant frequency of the element in the second electric signal.


US Patent 7598609 - Nanowire z-axis conductive film

This patent from Industrial Technology Research Institute teaches a polymer electrical connection film providing high adhesive strength for a fine pitched chip by using parallel nanowires. Claim 1 reads:

1. A polymer-matrix conductive film, comprising:

a polymer-matrix conductive body with unidirectional conductivity, including a plurality of solid conductive nanowires arranged parallel and spaced apart from each other and a polymer material filled in spacings of said solid conductive nanowires,

wherein each end of each said solid conductive nanowire has a barrier layer and a solder layer both of which contained in said polymer-matrix conductive body.


US Patent 7598595 - Nanoporous antireflection film

Antireflection films are important elements of LCDs to improve the efficiency of light transmission. This patent from Industrial Technology Research Institute teaches forming a nanoporous structure to achieve low reflectivity and high transmittance. Claim 1 reads:

1. A nanoporous antireflection film, which is fabricated by a method comprising the following steps:

providing a substrate;

preparing a precursor comprising organic template and a metallic/metalloid salt or alkoxide;

forming a coating of the precursor on the substrate;

curing the coating, thereby forming a film; and

removing the template from the film to leave a nanoporous antireflection film; wherein the antireflection film has a reflectivity of less than 10% and a transmittance of more than 90%.


US Patent 7598315 - Aqueous dispersion of nanoparticle/polyurethane composites

This patent from Lubrizol Advanced Materials teaches a process for manufacturing nanoparticle polymer composites. Claim 1 reads:

1. A process for making an aqueous dispersion of nanoparticle/polyurethane composites, the process comprising:

forming a mixture of nanoparticles and a continuous mass of a polyurethane prepolymer in the substantial absence of water, and

dispersing the mixture in aqueous medium.


Thursday, October 08, 2009

US Patent 7598127 - CNT fuse

Nantero has focused most of their patents on mechanical switches based on carbon nanotubes for applications in non-volatile memory and programmable logic. This patent takes a slightly different approach including claims to a nanotube fuse operable under Joule heating. Claim 3 reads:

3. A carbon nanotube fuse comprising:

a carbon nanotube layer,

a cap layer formed directly over the carbon nanotube layer, where the cap layer is formed of a material that has an insufficient amount of oxygen to significantly oxidize the carbon nanotube layer under operating conditions, and is otherwise sufficiently robust to protect the carbon nanotube layer from oxygen and plasmas, the cap layer formed at a smaller size than the carbon nanotube layer, to expose a contact area at distal ends of the carbon nanotube layer, and

electrically conductive contacts disposed on each of the two distal ends of the carbon nanotube layer and in electrical continuity with the carbon nanotube layer through the contact area, where the contact area is of a size sufficient for at least one of the contacts to ablate from the carbon nanotube layer upon application of a current that causes a Joule heating effect in the carbon nanotube layer.


US Patent 7598021 - Nanodot probe lithography

This patent from Micron Technology teaches a new scanning probe lithography system and method based on the use of nanodots (i.e. CdS or CdSe quantum dots) on the tips of scanning probes which are used to direct light and pattern a mask layer. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for fabricating an integrated circuit, comprising:

moving an array of regularly spaced nanodots over a surface of a partially fabricated integrated circuit, each nanodot having a different associated light source, wherein each light source is independently controlled; and

directing light energy from the associated light source to the one of the nanodots associated with the light source when the nanodot is positioned over a desired location on the surface, thereby defining a pattern on the surface, while light sources associated with others of the nanodots, which are not at desired locations on the surface, do not direct light energy to the surface of the partially fabricated integrated circuit.


US Patent 7597870 - Metal sulfide capped quantum dots

Quantum dots are usefully employed as biomarkers but the photoluminescence of qdots can include broadband emission which is disruptive to the identification of compounds. This patent from Drexel University reaches a modification of quantum dots to overcome this problem. Claim 1 reads:

1. A water soluble quantum dot suitable for bioconjugation consisting essentially of: one or more metal sulfides capped with carboxylated molecules.


US Patent 7597869 - Length enhancement during CNT growth

In order to take advantage of the mechanical, optical, and electrical properties of carbon nanotubes it is useful to have longer nanotubes which can be woven into fibers. This patent from Hon Hai Precision Industry provides a solution to increase the lengths of carbon nanotubes produced by CVD methods. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for producing carbon nanotubes, comprising the steps of:

providing a reaction chamber defining a reacting region therein;

providing a substrate having a catalyst layer formed thereon;

disposing the substrate in the reaction chamber;

introducing a carbon-containing reactive gas into the reaction chamber so as to grow carbon nanotubes using a chemical vapor deposition method; and

moving the substrate along a direction opposite to a growth direction of the carbon nanotubes whilst growing the carbon nanotubes, wherein tips of the carbon nanotubes remain in the reacting region while the substrate is moving.


Wednesday, October 07, 2009

US Patent 7597814 - Template for patterning nanoscale objects

Self-assembly is one type of a process used to generate template patterns from which nanoscale structures can be grown or deposited. However, it can be difficult to control the size and arrangement of the nanoscale structures using self-assembly methods alone. This patent from HP teaches using a nanoimprint mold to provide more control of the patterns used in nanoscale templates. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of fabricating ordered patterns of nanoscale objects on a substrate surface comprising:

applying a resist layer to a substrate surface;

stamping an imprint mold having nanoscale teeth onto the resist layer;

releasing the imprint mold to expose a template having a template surface formed into the imprint resist layer and having nanoscale openings formed therein to receive nanoscale objects; and

depositing a plurality of discrete nanoscale objects onto the template such that the nanoscale objects are received within said nanoscale openings, said nanoscale objects are selected from the group consisting of nanoparticles, nanowires, nanorods, nanotubes, proteins, and DNA.


US Patent 7597717 - Multi-tip rotating scanning probe head

Since the 1980's a variety of different types of scanning probe microscopy devices have been developed to accomplish a variety of different tasks in nanometrology and nanolithography. This patent based on research supported by the U.S. Navy teaches a compact scanning probe head capable of switching between different probe types. Claim 1 reads:

1. A scanning probe microscopy head comprising:

a circular base portion;

more than one cantilevers coupled to the perimeter of the base portion, the cantilevers positioned perpendicular to the base portion, the cantilevers comprising a substrate portion and a tip attachment portion, the tip attachment portion configured to linearly extend from and linearly retract within the substrate portion; and

at least one tip coupled to each of the tip attachment portions, wherein at least two of the cantilevers and associated tips are configured to perform a different scanning probe microscopy technique.


US Patent 7597278 - Method of producing purified medicinal nanoparticle suspensions

Several methods have been developed to produce nanoparticle suspensions to facilitate the delivery or absorption of drugs. However, these methods can often result in the inclusion of contamination in the suspension. This patent based on research from Osaka University teaches a method capable of improving the purity of such nanoparticle suspensions. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of producing a medicinal nanoparticle suspension, comprising the steps of:

adding a poorly water-soluble or water-insoluble medicinal ingredient of a drug into a poor solvent to form a suspending solution; and

irradiating the suspending solution with a laser having a wavelength that is absorbed by the medicinal ingredient to grind the medicinal ingredient in the suspending solution to form nanoparticles.

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US Patent 7596989 - Motion dissipation coating for AFM

Conventionally scanning probe microscopes used in nanometrology must compromise between the responsivity of the probe and damaging the nanoscopic samples under investigation. As an alternative this patent from Infinitesima Limited teaches coating the scanning probe tip with a polymer which provides a biasing force to enhance the probe responsivity without damaging the samples. Claim 1 reads:

1. A probe for use in an atomic force microscope, the probe comprising:

a tip and a beam,

the tip having a tip radius of 100 nm or less,

the beam connected to the tip and having a first and second side and coated on at least one of the first and second sides with a mechanical-energy dissipating polymer,

wherein the polymer includes one or more substance selected from the group consisting of i) rubber with low cross-linking density, and ii) a block copolmer material with a majority component that is an amorphous rubber with a glass transition temperature below room temperature and a minority component that is an amorphous polymer with a glass transition temperature above room temperature.


Friday, October 02, 2009

US Patent 7596415 - Biocompatible electrodes based on nanotube material

This patent from Medtronic teaches a manufacturing method of a medical electrode using carbon nanotubes in a coating layer to improve electrical conduction and biocompatibility. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for manufacturing a medical device electrode that is biocompatible with body tissue, comprising:

applying a first conductive polymer layer onto a substrate;

curing the first polymer layer to bond the first polymer layer to the substrate;

applying a second conductive polymer layer to the cured first conductive polymer layer; and

depositing a powder containing a plurality of nanostructures onto the second polymer layer, prior to curing the second conductive polymer layer to form a surface that is biocompatible with body tissue.


US Patent 7595708 - MEMS resonator array with shared beam sections

Micromechanical resonators are important to high frequency electronic devices used in communications applications. This patent from Robert Bosch GmbH teaches a MEMS array resonator having an improved resonator bandwidth (Q-factor) by using shared beam sections. Claim 1 reads:

1. A MEMS array structure, comprising:

a plurality of MEMS resonators forming an array,

each MEMS resonator including a plurality of beam sections,

wherein at least one of the beam sections is a shared beam section that is also included in another of the plurality of MEMS resonators which is adjacent to the respective MEMS resonator.


US Patent 7595539 - MEMS release using hydrogen gas

The moving parts of micromechanical structures typically need to be formed by a method including an etching steps which removes some underlying sacrificial layer material. Hydrofluoric acid is often used for this purpose but can be damaging and leave behind residue. This patent from Robert Bosch GmbH teaches an alternative using a hydrogen gas etchant. The claims seem to rely on a product-by-process justification of patentability which indicates that the process should produce a structurally differentiated MEMS device from prior MEMS devices released by other etchants (otherwise the claims would be invalid). Claim 1 reads:

1. A device including micromechanical elements, comprising:

a substrate layer;

a sacrificial layer on at least a first portion of the substrate layer; and

a function layer on at least a second portion of the sacrificial layer;

wherein the function layer is released from the substrate layer by exposing the device to gaseous hydrogen.