Sunday, February 13, 2011

US Patent 7884530 - Reversible actuation in arrays of nanostructures

The feet of a gekko have been identified to have nanostructured properties which provide an adhesiveness allowing them to stick to walls. This patent from Alcatel-Lucent teaches a way to fabricate nanostructured films which may provide similar properties. Claim 1 reads:

1. An apparatus, comprising:

a substrate with a surface;

a polymer layer attached to a region of the surface;

a plurality of nanostructures, a first end of each nanostructure being in the polymer layer and a second end of each nanostructure protruding from the polymer layer;

wherein the nanostructures are configured to move in a predetermined direction from a first position to a second position in response to a change in thickness of the polymer layer from a first thickness thereof to a second thickness.