Monday, August 30, 2010

US Patent 7783145 - Electrode having nanofilaments

Optoelectronic devices such as lasers, LEDs, modulators, and photosensors usually require electrodes to connect the optical medium to control electronics. However, these electrodes can represent a significant source of energy loss. This patent from HP teaches forming conductive nanofilaments to reduce this problem. Claim 1 reads: 

1. An optical device comprising:

an electrode configured to reduce eddy currents, wherein the electrode comprises

an electrically conductive base portion and

a plurality of nanofilaments in connection with the electrically conductive base portion,

wherein the base portion has a width and a length longer than the width, and lengths of the plurality of nanofilaments are substantially parallel to the length of the base portion; and

an optical layer associated with the plurality of nanofilaments of the electrode,

wherein the plurality of nanofilaments are operable to conduct an electric current between the optical layer and the base portion of the electrode.


US Patent 7781977 - High temperature photonic structure for tungsten filament

Infrared emission can reduce the energy efficiency of incandescent lamps up to 70%. This patent from GE teaches forming a thin film of metal nanoparticles on a light source in order to suppress the emission of infrared wavelengths. Claim 1 reads:

1. A light source comprising

emissive components having deposited thereon a thin film metal layer in the form of a photonic lattice comprising discreet nano-particles,

the light source exhibiting a suppression of emissions in excess of 900 nm and a shift thereof to wavelengths in the visible or lower infrared spectrum during operation.


US Patent 7781862 - Nanotube RRAM

Nantero's original concept of non-volatile memory involved electromechanical switches formed from nanotube ribbons. This patent teaches an alternative variation of non-volatile memory formed from immobile nanotube fabrics sandwiched between electrodes which act as programmable fuses or anti-fuses. Claim 1 reads:

1. A two terminal switching device, comprising:

a first conductive terminal;

a second conductive terminal in spaced relation to the first conductive terminal;

a nanotube article having a plurality of nanotubes, said nanotube article being arranged such that the nanotube article is in permanent and direct physical contact with both the first and second conductive terminals; and

stimulus circuitry in electrical communication with at least one of the first and second conductive terminals, said stimulus circuitry configured to create a first voltage difference between the first conductive terminal and the second conductive terminal, to induce a change in the resistance of the nanotube article between the first and second conductive terminals from a relatively low resistance to a relatively high resistance, said stimulus circuitry configured to create a second voltage difference between the first conductive terminal and the second conductive terminal, to induce a change in the resistance of the nanotube article between the first and second conductive terminals from a relatively high resistance to a relatively low resistance, wherein the relatively high resistance of the nanotube article between the first and second conductive terminals corresponds to a first state of the two terminal switching device, and wherein the relatively low resistance of the nanotube article between the first and second conductive terminals corresponds to a second state of the two terminal switching device, wherein the first and second states of the two terminal switching device are nonvolatile.


Thursday, August 26, 2010

US Patent 7781778 - LED employing nanowires and phosphor film

This patent from Samsung teaches forming transparent conductive oxide nanowires in a light path of a semiconductor LED to improve light extraction efficiency. Claim 1 reads:

1. A semiconductor light emitting device comprising:

a substrate;

a light emitting structure comprising a first conductivity type semiconductor layer, an active layer and a second conductivity type semiconductor layer sequentially formed on the substrate;

a plurality of nanowire structures formed on the light emitting structure and formed of a transparent material; and

a phosphor film formed on at least an upper surface and a side surface of each of the plurality of nanowire structures, wherein the phosphor film is additionally formed on the entire area of upper surfaces of the light emitting structure exposed between the plurality of nanowire structures.


US Patent 7781260 - Nanocoatings for improved adhesion in microelectronics packaging

This patent from Intel teaches using nanoparticle films to improve adhesion between interconnects and epoxy in electronics packaging. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method comprising:

coating an interconnect structure disposed on a die with at least one of a layer of functionalized nanoparticles and nanowires, wherein the functionalized nanoparticles are dispersed in a solvent;

heating the layer comprising at least one of a layer of functionalized nanoparticles and nanowires, to drive off a portion of the solvent; and

applying an underfill on the coated interconnect structure.


US Patent 7781061 - Graphene transistor on BN substrate

This latest patent from Alcatel-Lucent teaches a method of epitaxial growth of graphene layers on a boron nitride substrate to form high speed graphene transistors. Claim 1 reads:
1. An apparatus, comprising:

a crystalline substrate with a diamond-type lattice and a substantially (111)-surface, the crystalline substrate being a cubic boron nitride substrate;

a graphene-like layer on the substantially (111)-surface; and

a region comprising boron nitride on a portion of the graphene-like layer, the portion of the graphene-like layer being located between the region comprising boron nitride and the substrate.


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

US Patent 7781042 - Optical storage using nanoparticles

Optical disk memory conventionally involves etching pits into a media surface which are read by a laser. The deposition of metal nanoparticles has been proposed as a higher resolution alternative to etching pits and this patent from Thomson Licensing teaches a multilayer nanoparticle optical disk memory which may provide still higher density storage. Claim 1 reads:  

1. Optical storage medium having

at least a first storage layer with nanoparticles and a second storage layer with nanoparticles,

each storage layer being made of a dielectric material,

wherein the dielectric material of the first storage layer has a different dielectric permittivity than the dielectric material of the second storage layer.


US Patent 7780918 - Chemical sensor formed from nanotube fabric

Nantero has focused much early effort in a new form of non-volatile memory based on carbon nanotube fabrics. This patent teaches using similar structures in forming a chemical sensor. Claim 1 reads:

1. A sensor platform, comprising

a sensor element comprising a patterned nonwoven nanotube fabric and having an electrical characterization;

a support structure for supporting the sensor element so that it may be exposed to a fluid; and

control circuitry to electrically sense the electrical characterization of the sensor element so that the presence of a corresponding analyte may be detected, wherein the patterned nonwoven nanotube fabric has at least two sides that are substantially parallel to each other and the patterned nonwoven nanotube fabric comprises a plurality of unaligned nanotubes.


US Patent 7780270 - CNT passivation layer for inkjet printhead

Inkjet printheads use minute resistive heaters which generate bubbles via a vaporization process to eject ink drops. Usually a protective coating is provided on the heaters to increase life expectancy. This patent from Samsung teaches using carbon nanotubes in this protective layer to improve the thermal efficiency of the printheads. Claim 1 reads:

1. A heating structure of an inkjet printhead, comprising:

a substrate;

a heater formed on the substrate;

an electrode formed on the heater;

a passivation layer formed to cover the heater and the electrode; and carbon nanotubes (CNTs) formed in the passivation layer, having a higher thermal conductivity with respect to the passivation layer.


Monday, August 23, 2010

US Patent 7778301 - Quantum dot lasing in room temperature liquid solution

CdS nanocrystals have been observed to have excellent lasing characteristics in the blue spectral range. However, this lasing has required low temperature operation (below 170 Kelvin). This patent from Georgia Tech. Research teaches a system implementing CdS quanum dot lasers at room temperature. Claim 1 reads: 

1. Lasing apparatus comprising:

a room temperature liquid solution comprising quantum dots that each have an average diameter between 3 and 6 nanometers, and wherein all quantum dots in the liquid solution are substantially the same size, and wherein each quantum dot is capped with a capping material that passivates and protects the surface and acts to suspend the quantum dot in the liquid solution;

reflective cavity apparatus for confining the room temperature liquid solution; and

apparatus for exciting the room temperature liquid solution to induce lasing of the quantum dots.


US Patent 7778061 - Read/write system for nanoscale memristor memory

Crossbar nanoelectronics was originally proposed by Hewlett-Packard for molecular electronics. In recent years HP has moved away from using molecules toward using metal oxide thin film materials referred to as "memristors." This latest patent teaches a read/write architecture which provides an interface between microscale and nanoscale signal lines. Claim 1 reads:    

1. A crossbar-memory system comprising:

a first layer of microscale signal lines and a second layer of microscale signal lines;

a first layer of one or more nanowires configured so that each first layer nanowire overlaps each first layer microscale signal line;

a second layer of one or more nanowires configured so that each second layer nanowire overlaps each second layer microscale signal line and overlaps each first layer nanowire;

nonlinear-tunneling resistors configured to selectively connect first layer nanowires to first layer microscale signal lines and to selectively connect second layer nanowires to second layer microscale signal lines; and

nonlinear tunneling-hysteretic resistors configured to connect each first layer nanowire to each second layer nanowire at each crossbar intersection.


US Patent 7777478 - Touch and auditory nanotube sensors

Touch sensors are critical to a variety of portable electronic devices such as the iPhone and iPad. This patent from the University of Dayton teaches a way to implement such sensors using carbon nanotubes. Claim 1 reads:

1. A sensor comprising: at least one sensor probe comprising:

a pair of electrodes;

a vertically aligned nanotube disposed between the pair of electrodes, the nanotube having a first end and a second end, one of the pair of electrodes at the first end of the nanotube and the other electrode at the second end;

a piezoelectric polymer on the nanotube; and

a field source for generating a field, the field source operatively connected to the pair of electrodes;

whereby when the sensor probe is touched, a change in the field occurs or electricity is generated.


Thursday, August 19, 2010

US Patent 7777233 - Non-blinking quantum dots

Quantum dots are usually fabricated either by self-assembly methods on a substrate by epitaxial growth or in solution by colloidal synthesis. The colloidal quantum dots have the advantage of low cost deposition processes but have demonstrated a "blinking" problem related to intermittent emission which is not found in epitaxially grown quantum dot films. This patent from Kodak teaches a type of colloidal quantum dots which can avoid the blinking problem. Claim 1 reads:

1. An optoelectronic device comprising:

(a) two spaced apart electrodes; and

(b) at least one layer containing ternary core/shell nanocrystals disposed between the spaced electrodes and having ternary semiconductor cores containing a gradient in alloy composition and wherein the ternary core/shell nanocrystals exhibit single molecule non-blinking behavior characterized by on times greater than one minute or radiative lifetimes less than 10 ns.


US Patent 7776682 - Copper nanotube memory cell

This patent from Spansion teaches a fabrication method for a new type of memory cell which uses porous templates to form copper nanotubes to facilitate ionic memory storage. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of forming a memory cell, comprising:

forming a first electrode over a semiconductor substrate;

forming a passive layer over the first electrode, the passive layer comprising copper sulfide;

forming an electrically non-conducting material layer with ordered porosity over the passive layer;

forming an active material inside the ordered porosity of the electrically non-conducting material layer;

forming copper nanotubes in the ordered porosity of the electrically non-conducting material layer; and

forming a second electrode over to the active material.


US Patent 7776445 - Graphene-diamond hybrid material

This patent is from Korea Institute of Science and Technology and teaches a way to synthesize single layer graphene on a nanocrystalline diamond layer deposited by CVD. Claim 1 reads:

1. An AA graphene-diamond hybrid material, comprising:

a diamond matrix having edges of disconnected {111} lattice planes on the surface thereof; and

AA graphene layers epitaxially grown on the edges of the {111} lattice planes.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

US Patent 7776383 - Combinatorial discovery of nanomaterials

This patent from PPG Industries Ohio includes remarkably broad claims (with priority as early as 1996) for a testing method of ceramic nanomaterial composites based on the suitability of the materials properties in electronics or sensing applications. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of discovering ceramic nanomaterial for an application comprising:

forming an electroded film array comprising a plurality of array elements wherein each array element of the electroded film array comprises a first layer of electrode and a ceramic nanomaterial film deposited on the first layer of electrode;

determining a property of each array element of the electroded film array; and

determining whether one or more of the plurality of array elements exhibit a property that is suitable for the application.


US Patent 7776307 - Concentric gate nanotube transistor

Etamota is a company with expertise in growing carbon nanotubes and semiconductor nanowires. This patent from the company teaches a method of forming vertical carbon nanotubes as the channels of field effect transistors using an AAO template. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of making a device comprising:

anodizing an aluminum substrate to produce an alumina template with a plurality of pores, each having a pore diameter;

forming a conductive layer in the pores;

forming on the conductive layer in the pores an insulating layer; and

exposing the alumina template having pores to a hydrocarbon gas at a temperature to grow carbon nanotubes in the pores, each carbon nanotube having an outer diameter less than the pore diameter of the pore in which the carbon nanotube is produced,

wherein when growing the carbon nanotubes, the carbon nanotubes are electrically insulated from the conductive layer by the insulating layer.


US Patent 7776269 - Capacitive nanoelectrode sensor

Carbon nanotubes have been used to construct chemiresistors which detect chemical species based on changes in resistance. However, sensing resistance of nanotube arrays is subject to noise, slow recovery and contact effects. This patent from U.S. Naval Research teaches the alternative of a capacitive chemical nanotube sensor to avoid these problems. Claim 1 reads:

1. A sensing device comprising:

a bottom electrode;

a dielectric layer on the bottom electrode;

a grid of nanoelectrodes on and parallel to the dielectric layer; a top electrode in electrical contact with the grid; and

a capacitance meter electrically connected to the top electrode and the bottom electrode.


Monday, August 16, 2010

US Patent 7772551 - Variable refractive index element formed using quantum dots

This patent from Toshiba suggests a refractive optical switching device based on a quantum dot material. Claim 1 reads:

1. A refractive index variable element, comprising:

a structure including quantum dots having discrete energy levels and a dielectric matrix surrounding the quantum dots; and

an electron discharger discharging an electron from the quantum dots through the dielectric matrix to convert the quantum dots into cations.


US Patent 7772157 - High critical current density superconducting film

This patent from Japan Science and Technology Agency is based on the finding that the formation of nanogrooves in a superconducting film can increase the critical current density at which superconductivity   holds. Claim 1 reads:

1. A superconducting film comprising:

a substrate having a surface;

a superconductor layer formed on said surface of the substrate;

nano grooves formed in said substrate, the nano grooves having a defined width and defining a current flowing direction when current flows through the superconductor layer;

rows of defect inducing parts formed in the nano grooves; and

two-dimensional crystal defects in the superconductor layer on the defect inducing parts.


US Patent 7772059 - Graphene transistors formed from SiC layer

IBM and Alcatel-Lucent have already patented their versions of graphene transistors. Texas Instruments have now patented their own version based on a graphene channel formed from SiC. Claim 1 reads: 

1. A method of fabricating a transistor device, comprising the steps of:

providing a substrate forming an upper silicon layer mesa island at a surface of the substrate;

forming graphene layers by first carbonizing the silicon layer into SiC utilizing a gaseous source and then converting the SiC into graphene layers;

after forming the graphene layers, forming source/drain regions by depositing source/drain material on opposite longitudinal ends of the graphene layers and ion implanting the source/drain material;

forming gate oxide between the source/drain regions on the graphene layers; and

forming gate material over the gate oxide.


Sunday, August 15, 2010

US Patent 7771823 - Atomically smooth nanocrystalline diamond film

This patent from Nanotech LLC teaches a scratch and wear resistant nanocrystalline diamond film with a smoothness approaching atomic levels. Claim 1 reads:

1. A substrate at least partially coated with a film comprising a nano-crystalline diamond matrix, wherein the nano-crystalline diamond matrix is substantially free of graphite inclusions and wherein the film has an average root mean square surface roughness of less than 5.00 nm.


US Patent 7771784 - CNT thin film production

This patent from Materials and Eletrochemical Research (MER) teaches a method to form carbon nanotube films on arbitrary surfaces with improved efficiency. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for directly forming a thin film of nanotubes from a flowing aerosol suspension of nanotube particles produced as the exhaust flow from a nanotube-producing reactor, which comprises:

depositing said nanotube particles from said flowing aerosol suspension onto a filter substrate; and

adhering the as-deposited nanotube particles to a second substrate.


US Patent 7771774 - Deposition of nanoparticles on a dental implant

Dental implants serve as artificial roots for prosthetic teeth. In order to increase the adherence to bone this patent from Biomet 3I teaches calcium phosphate nanoparticles deposited on the implant. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of forming an implant to be implanted into living bone, the method comprising the acts of:

roughening at least a portion of the implant surface to produce a microscale roughened surface; and

depositing discrete nanoparticles directly on the roughened surface though a one-step process of exposing the roughened surface to a solution including the nanoparticles, the nanoparticles comprising a material having a property that promotes osseointegration,

wherein the act of depositing discrete nanoparticles results in deposition covering less than all of the roughened surface such that a portion of the roughened surface is exposed between at least some of the discrete nanoparticles.


Thursday, August 12, 2010

US Patent 7771695 - Molecular clips for fullerenes

This patent from IBM teaches molecular "clips" for carbon nanotubes and fullerenes to enhance electronic applicability. Claim 1 reads:

1. A pi-pi complex of a carbon nanotube with a molecular clip or of a fullerene with a molecular clip, wherein the molecular clip is a Diels-Alder adduct of a polyacene with a dienophile.


US Patent 7771624 - Ferromagnetic nanoparticle ink

Inkjet technology has been employed in printing patterns of conductive nanoparticles to form high resolution metal lines at low cost. One of the problems with this technique is that effects such as ink viscosity and drying speed can cause defects in the patterns. This patent from Samsung teaches a ferromagnetic nanoparticle ink to circumvent these problems. Claim 1 reads:

1. A nanoparticle for conductive ink comprising:

a ferromagnetic core; and

a conductive layer surrounding the ferromagnetic core,

wherein the ferromagnetic core is comprised in 5 to 40 parts by weight, per 100 parts by weight of the nanoparticles, and the nanoparticle having a size of 5 to 50 nm.


US Patent 7771619 - Transparent inorganic nanoparticle composite for low loss telecomm fiber

This patent from Rutgers has some early priority (1999) to optically transparent nanomaterial composites useful for constructing fiber optic cables of low attenuation. Claim 1 reads:

1. Solid solution inorganic nanoparticles of a rare earth element doped host metal halide or oxyhalide salt, wherein up to about 60 mole percent of said host metal is replaced with one or more rare earth elements, consisting of particles having a dispersed particle size less than 100 nm.


US Patent 7771117 - Nanostructured emitter for dental x-ray

Size and power requirements create difficulties for medical x-rays and the situation is exacerbated when dealing with oral x-rays. This patent from Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute teaches a system using nanotube or nanowire electron emitters in forming a miniature low power X-ray source for dental examinations. Claim 1 reads:

1. An oral X-ray tube system comprising:

a hand-held body having a pen-shape;

an X-ray emission module emitting X-rays using a cathode comprising a chipped nano-structured material,

wherein the X-ray emission module is separable from the body.


Thursday, August 05, 2010

US Patent 7768185 - Electrodeless CNT light source

Electrodeless lamps are energized by a power source outside of the lamp and have the advantage of a longer life expectancy and higher efficiency. This patent teaches one variation of electrodeless lamp based on microwave excitation of carbon nanotubes. Claim 1 reads:

1. An electrodeless light source, comprising a microwave source and carbon nanotubes, wherein said carbon nanotubes are in an inert gas or nitrogen having a pressure about 0.1-1.0 torr.

US Patent 7767261 - Passivation of semiconductor nanoparticles

Kovio is a Silicon Valley company founded in the MIT Media Lab. focusing on the development of printing silicon over flexible and large area substrates. This latest patent has priority going back to 2003 and teaches a passivation method for silicon nanoparticle "ink". Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of making passivated semiconductor nanoparticles, comprising:

a) reacting hydrogen-terminated semiconductor nanoparticles with a compound containing one or more unsaturated carbon-carbon bond(s) to form said passivated semiconductor nanoparticles; and

b) isolating said passivated semiconductor nanoparticles.


Wednesday, August 04, 2010

US Patent 7767226 - Calcium sulfate nanoparticles for bone repair

Existing bone grafting material suffer from problems of scarcity and the possibility of triggering immune response. In order to overcome these deficiencies this patent from the State University of New York teaches a bone repair material based on calcium sulfate nanoparticles. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for facilitating repair of a damaged area of bone comprising:

i) providing a composition comprising hemihydrate calcium sulfate particles, wherein at least 50% of the particles of hemihydrate calcium sulfate in the composition have a diameter of from 50 nanometers (nm) to 500 nm;

ii) mixing the composition with an aqueous solution to obtain a paste;

iii) applying the paste to the damaged area of bone; and

iv) allowing the paste to set to facilitate repair of the damaged area of bone.


US Patent 7767219 - Magnetic nanocapsules for drug delivery

This patent from Boston Scientific Scimed teaches a system of controlled release nanocapsules for drug delivery. Claim 1 reads:

1. A medical device adapted for implantation or insertion into a patient, said medical device comprising a magnetic or paramagnetic region and a plurality of nanocapsules that are magnetically attracted to said magnetic or paramagnetic region, said nanocapsules comprising a therapeutic agent, a magnetic or paramagnetic material, and a polyelectrolyte multilayer shell.


US Patent 7767192 - Molecular sieve nanocrystals

Purification of petroleum products often require sieves which filter gases on a molecular level. This patent from ExxonMobile teaches a nanocrystalline sieve for improved molecular separation. Claim 1 reads:

1. A molecular sieve comprising single crystals or agglomerates, the crystals or agglomerates having an average largest dimension of 100 nm or less which molecular sieve has a crystal or agglomerate size distribution such that the variance in the longest dimension is less than 15% of the average longest dimension, and is capable of forming a stable colloidal suspension.


Tuesday, August 03, 2010

US Patent 7767186 - Microwave purification of CNTs

Fabrication methods of single walled carbon nanotubes often result in a 1/3 portion of the nanotubes having metallic rather than semiconducting characteristics. This patent covers a technique developed by Honda Motors in 2003 using microwaves to increase the semiconducting portion. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for processing carbon nanotubes comprising:

receiving a carbon nanotube sample consisting essentially of metallic-type and semiconducting-type carbon nanotubes;

positioning said carbon nanotube sample in a microwave cavity at a location corresponding to a maximum in the electric field of a stationary wave having a first microwave frequency and a first power; and

exposing said carbon nanotube sample to the stationary wave.


US Patent 7767184 - Nanocrystalline diamond films

Diamond-like carbon films have superior characteristics in hardness, wear-resistance, and electrical insulation. This patent from Nanotech LLC includes some basic claims (priority 2003) to a nanocrystalline version of diamond films having high purity. Claim 1 reads:

1. A film comprising a nano-crystalline diamond matrix, wherein the film has less than 3 weight percent of graphite.


US Patent 7767017 - Multi-phasic nanoparticles

This patent from the University of Michigan teaches a technique of electrospraying which produces nanodroplets having chemically distinct polymer regions. Claim 1 reads:

1. A nano-object having at least one spatial dimension of about 5 nm to about 5000 nm comprising multiple chemically distinct exposed surface regions, wherein at least two of the multiple chemically distinct exposed surface regions independently comprise a polymeric material.


Sunday, August 01, 2010

US Patent 7765013 - Nanoscale and microscale wireless neural probe

Over the coming decades many of the most game changing innovations may rely on new ways to interface electronic devices with the human mind. This latest patent from Wisconsin Alumini Research Foundation teaches a wireless probe to provide stimulation of axons of neural cells and which may lay the groundwork for future computer-brain interfaces. Claim 1 reads:

1. A wirelessly stimulatable probe comprising:

an untethered, dispersible element attachable to tissue structure and substantially less than 100 micrometers in a longest dimension, the dispersible element absorbing electromagnetic radiation to produce an electrical current local to the dispersible element;

energy of the electromagnetic radiation providing the sole source of electrical power for the dispersible element in interacting with the tissue structure.


US Patent 7764534 - Memristive memory cell with gate controlled diode

This patent from SanDisk3D teaches a variation of 1R1D memristive memory cells using a gate controlled vertical diode structure as an isolation element to avoid sneak paths. Claim 1 reads:

1. A nonvolatile memory cell, comprising:

a gate controlled diode steering element,

wherein the gate controlled diode steering element comprises a substantially pillar shaped diode steering element; and

a resistivity switching element electrically connected to the gate controlled diode steering element.