Wednesday, August 31, 2011

US Patent 8009284 - CNT electromagnetic sensor

This patent from Hon Hai Precision (Foxconn) teaches how carbon nanotube structures can be used to measure the intensity and polarizing direction of electromagnetic waves. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for detecting an electromagnetic wave, the method comprising:

providing an electromagnetic wave sensor comprising a carbon nanotube structure, the carbon nanotube structure comprising a plurality of carbon nanotubes arranged substantially along a same direction;

irradiating the carbon nanotube structure with an electromagnetic wave to be measured; and

measuring a variation of a resistance of the carbon nanotube structure when the carbon nanotube structure is irradiated by the electromagnetic wave.

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US Patent 8008942 - Quantum analog processor

This latest patent from D-Wave Systems teaches how a plurality of superconducting quantum devices can be combined to "evolve" solutions to computational problems beyond the capability of conventional computers. Claim 1 reads:

1. A computational system, comprising:

a computer; and

a quantum processor in communication with the computer, the quantum processor comprising:

(i) a plurality of quantum devices, wherein each quantum device in the plurality of quantum devices has a respective first basis state and a respective second basis state; and

(ii) a plurality of coupling devices, wherein a first coupling device in the plurality of coupling devices couples a first quantum device in the plurality of quantum devices to a second quantum device in the plurality of quantum devices, and wherein the first coupling device is configured to tune a coupling strength between the first quantum device and the second quantum device so that the first quantum device and the second quantum device couple either ferromagnetically or anti-ferromagnetically.


US Patent 8007908 - Single walled carbon nanohorn adsorptive material

Sumio Iijima of NEC is frequently given credit for the discovery and analysis of carbon nanotubes in 1991. More recently Iijima has been studying carbon "nanohorn" material having superior adsorptive properties. This patents teaches a carbon nanohorn material useful for storing methane gas for energy and enviromental applications. Claim 1 reads:

1. A single walled carbon nanohorn adsorptive material having methane absorptivity, wherein a lanthanide metal is deposited on a single walled carbon nanohorn.

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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

US Patent 8007871 - Deposition of ions on CNTs

This patent from NanoSelect Inc. teaches a method to deposit individual ions on a carbon nanotube which may be useful in the development of nanoscale sensors. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for selectively depositing one or more ions, comprising:

providing at least one nanotube in an atmospheric or sub-atmospheric pressure environment, and

selectively depositing the one or more ions into at least one nanotube, onto at least one nanotube, or both, using an electrospray ion source.


US Patent 8007617 - CNT transfer deposition

Most methods for growing carbon nanotubes on a substrate produce vertical or near vertical arrays which are non-ideal for some applications such as sensors and transistors. This patent from Samsung teaches using a vertical nanotube array as source material to transfer and align nanotubes on a second substrate in order to produce horizontally oriented carbon nanotubes. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of transferring carbon nanotubes comprising:

vertically forming carbon nanotubes on a first substrate;

providing a second substrate;

aligning the first substrate with the second substrate so that the carbon nanotubes face the second substrate; and

transferring the carbon nanotubes onto the second substrate by pressing the first substrate onto the second substrate and pushing the first substrate in a direction perpendicular to a direction in which the first substrate is pressed onto the second substrate to arrange the carbon nanotubes in a direction parallel to a surface of the second substrate on which the nanotubes are transferred,

wherein transferring the carbon nanotubes comprises transferring the carbon nanotubes onto the second substrate to be attached in a horizontal direction with respect to the second substrate.


US Patent 8006703 - In situ synthesis of composite nanoscale particles

This patent from Philip Morris teaches a fabrication method for metal or metal oxide composite nanoparticles useful for the conversion of carbon monoxide to carbon dioxide in smoking products (e.g. cigarettes, cigars). Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of making composite nanoscale particles comprising:

subjecting a starting material to laser energy so as to form a vapor and

condensing the vapor so as to form the composite nanoscale particles,

wherein said composite nanoscale particles comprise a first metal and/or a first metal oxide incorporated in nanoscale particles of an oxide of a second metal, the first metal being different than the second metal, wherein the second metal is selected from the group consisting of Mg, Cr, Mn, Cu, Zn, Ge, Y, Zr, Nb, Ru, Rh, Pd, Ag, Sn, Ce, Pr, La, Hf, Ta, W, Re, Os, Ir and Au, and wherein the starting material comprises the first metal oxide and/or the second metal oxide.


Monday, August 29, 2011

US Patent 8004175 - Light emitting material including sodium and metal nanoparticles

This patent from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries teaches a way to improve the brightness of nanoparticle-based electroluminescense by using a sodium base material. Claim 1 reads:

1. A light-emitting material comprising:

a light-emitting base material; and

metallic nanoparticles added thereto,

wherein the light-emitting base material is sodium, the metallic nanoparticles are uniformly dispersed in the light-emitting base material, and the metallic nanoparticles are selected from the group consisting of titanium ultrafine particles, silver ultrafine particles, and stainless-steel ultrafine particles.

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US Patent 8004146 - CNT ionic actuator

This patent from the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology in Japan teaches a way to form ionic actuators from carbon nanotube material without the use of a polymer which can lead to an improved response speed of actuation. Claim 1 reads:

1. An electrically conductive thin film formed from an ionic liquid and carbon nanotubes having an aspect ratio of not less than 10,000 and being free of polymer.


US Patent 8004076 - CNT interconnect for microelectronic package

This patent from Intel teaches a way to deal with the problem of stress caused by thermal expansion in semiconductor packaging by using carbon nanotube interconnects. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of forming a microelectronic package, comprising:

providing a silicon substrate having a plurality of carbon nanotubes disposed on a silicon layer;

coupling the silicon substrate to a top surface of a packaging substrate, wherein the plurality of carbon nanotubes are coupled to a plurality of substrate pads of the packaging substrate;

removing the silicon substrate from the packaging substrate; and

disposing a die adjacent to the top surface of the packaging substrate, wherein the plurality of carbon nanotubes are coupled to a plurality of bump pads of the die.


Thursday, August 25, 2011

US Patent 8004043 - CNTFET logic

This patent from Intel appears to include some basic claims covering a carbon nanotube based logic system useful as building blocks for nanoscale reconstruction of inverter, NAND, and NOR logic gates. Claim 1 reads:

1. An integrated circuit, comprising:

first and second CNTFETs coupled in series between high and low supply references, the first CNTFET having a top gate to provide a logical input to receive High and Low logical values, the second CNTFET having a top gate coupled to a bias supply so that the second CNTFET provides an active load for the first CNTFET to provide suitable logical High and Low output levels.


US Patent 8003979 - High density coupling of quantum dots to CNTs

In order to improve the efficiency of charge carrier transfer to quantum dots this patent from the Research Foundation of State University of New York teaches a way to integrate quantum dots with carbon nanotubes which is found to improve the efficiency of photodetection at infrared wavelengths. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of preparing a carbon nanotube-quantum dot conjugate, said method comprising:

providing a plurality of semiconductor quantum dots;

providing a thiol-functionalized carbon nanotube, wherein said thiol-functionalized carbon nanotube has a surface comprising a plurality of terminal thiol groups; and

attaching the plurality of semiconductor quantum dots to the surface of the carbon nanotube under conditions which yield a carbon nanotube-quantum dot conjugate having a density of quantum dots on the surface of the carbon nanotube of between about 1.0 quantum dot particles/100 nm2 and about 4.0 quantum dot particles/100 nm2.


US Patent 8003881 - Electron donor polymer nanofibrils for photovoltaics

This patent from the Commissariat a l'Energie Atomique teaches a solution-based process for forming photovoltaic cells from polymer nanofibrils without requiring annealing. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of preparing a polymeric composition with photovoltaic properties, comprising

a step of blending, in a solvent encouraging the production of nanofibrils, at least one electron donor type semiconductor polymeric material essentially in the form of the nanofibrils and at least one electron acceptor type material in the solvent,

said nanofibrils representing 50% to 93% by weight of the electron donor type semiconductor polymeric material.


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

US Patent 8003551 - Surface activation of semiconductor nanostructures

Inorganic nanostructures are hydrophobic by nature and consequently not easily dissolved or suspended in aqueous solutions, rendering their use difficult in various applications. This patent from Spire Corporation teaches an activation method to render nanostructures more hydrophilic and thus reduce this problem. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for generating a plurality of nanoparticles comprising:

forming a porous semiconductor layer on a substrate, said porous layer including a plurality of semiconductor nanostructure elements;

cleaving said nanostructure elements to generate a plurality of nanoparticles; and

activating at least a portion of a surface of the nanoparticles;

wherein the step of generating a porous semiconductor layer comprises subjecting a silicon susbtrate to reactive ion etching.


US Patent 8003497 - Fabricating diluted magnetic semiconductor nanowires

This patent from the Regents of the University of California teaches a way to fabricate magnetic nanowires for application in spintronic hard drives. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for fabricating diluted magnetic semiconductor (DMS) nanowires, comprising:

providing a catalyst-coated substrate; and

subjecting at least a portion of the substrate to a semiconductor-based solution and a dopant-based solution;

wherein said dopant-based solution comprises a dopant and a chloride-based vapor transport to aid in synthesis of the magnetic semiconductor nanowires.


US Patent 8003212 - Proppant including sintered nanoparticles

Proppants are materials used to maintain hydraulic fractures and assist in the recovery of natural gas and oil. This patent from Oxane Materials teaches how nanoparticles can be used for improving proppant materials. Claim 1 reads:

1. A proppant comprising a ceramic material or oxide thereof or a metal oxide with a surface that comprises nanoparticles that are sintered, wherein said proppant is hollow, wherein said proppant has an overall diameter of from about 90 microns to about 1,600 microns.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

US Patent 8003173 - Forming photoresist laminate with nanoparticle aerosol

This patent from Samsung teaches how to improve the adhesion of photoresist layers used in PCB fabrication by using aerosol deposition of metal nanoparticles. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for forming a photoresist-laminated substrate comprising:

preparing a laminated substrate having an insulating substrate and a metal layer;

coating with an aerosol of metal nanoparticles having a diameter of 0.001 to 10 μm on the metal layer, wherein a pitch between the metal nanoparticles in the aerosol is 0.001 to 20 μm;

laminating a photoresist film on the metal layer coated with the aerosol of metal nanoparticles.


US Patent 8003165 - Electroless plating of catalyst for nanotube growth

This patent from Applied Nanotech has priority going back to 2001 and includes some basic claims for growing carbon nanotubes based on electroless plating of the catalyst. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method comprising the steps of:

coating nanoparticles with a catalyst, wherein the catalyst has a property that promotes carbon nanotube growth thereupon, wherein the coating step uses an electroless plating bath process to coat the catalyst onto the nanoparticles;

depositing the nanoparticles coated with the catalyst onto a substrate; and

growing carbon nanotubes on the nanoparticles.


US Patent 8003079 - Nanoparticles containing iodine for x-ray imaging

This patent from Bar-Ilan University teaches a way to increase the visibility of x-ray images using polymer nanoparticles with iodine. Claim 1 reads:

1. Nanoparticles having an average particle size of less than 2000 nm, wherein said nanoparticles comprise a polymer having pendant cleavable iodine substituted groups.


US Patent 8001977 - Moving magnetic nanoparticles through tissue

This patent from NanoBioMagnetics Inc. teaches how a pulsating magnetic field can improve the permeation of magnetic particles through living tissue or membrane which can be useful for the delivery of anti-cancer drugs. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of using a magnetic field to move magnetically responsive nanoparticles through a membrane within a body comprising the following step:

moving the nanoparticles through the membrane using a primary magnet to direct the nanoparticles in a primary direction, and at the same time, one or more secondary magnets directed at an acute angle relative to the primary direction, wherein the secondary magnets are controlled to repetitively vary the direction of the resultant magnetic field gradient in a pulsating manner.


Friday, August 19, 2011

More bad news for HP's "memristor" prospects

This week has been particularly bleak with respect to the future of the Hewlett-Packard company including a plunge in the stock price to new lows, the failure of HP's smartphone and tablet products, and the apparent desire of HP management to sell off their PC business entirely (link). It will be interesting to see what effect this has on HP's plan to market the "memristor" (i.e. memory resistor) in collaboration with Hynix as a form of RRAM (i.e. resistance RAM).

As I pointed out in an earlier blog entry it is readily apparent to anyone who actually bothers to study the patents related to memory resistors that HP is actually a latecomer to RRAM technology with practically no credible patents of value. In fact, Samsung (US 7417271) and Sharp (US 7796416) both have patents which HP would have to license to practice the TiO2 version of memory resistors for which HP's researchers took credit. It seems to me that even though HP has been very successful at taking credit for memory resistor technology from legitimate companies and innovators it appears increasingly unlikely that HP will be in a position to market the technology.

A detailed analysis of memory resistor patents, companies, and potential applications is available at this link.

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Thursday, August 18, 2011

US Patent 8000577 - Nanoparticle-enhanced fiber optics

This patent from Alcatel-Lucent teaches how to incorporate nanoparticles of a size between 20 and 500 nm into glass fiber to improve the optical amplification in fiber optic communication devices. Claim 1 reads:

1. An optical fibre including a gain medium with a core made up of a transparent material and of nanoparticles comprising a doping element and at least one element that enhances the usage of said doping element, and of an outer cladding surrounding the core, wherein the doping element is erbium (Er), the enhancement element is chosen from among bismuth (Bi) and a combination of antimony (Sb) and of bismuth (Bi), and a size of the nanoparticles is greater than 20 nanometres.


US Patent 7999176 - CNT junction for solar cells

This patent is from Vanguard Solar and teaches a solar cell structure including carbon nanotubes to improve photoelectric conversion efficiency. Claim 1 reads:

1. A photovoltaic device, comprising:

a first semiconductor layer; and

a second light-responsive layer forming a junction with the first layer, the junction including a depletion region;

wherein the second layer includes a mesh of carbon nanostructures at least partially embedded therein to provide a conductive path out of the second layer to an electrical contact, and the second layer is spaced apart from the electrical contact and a plurality of the carbon nanostructures extend therebetween.


US Patent 7999027 - Graphene-modified tires

This patent from Nanotek Instruments teaches how nanoscale graphene platelets can be used to extend the lifetime of rubber tires. Claim 1 reads:

1. A tire comprising a rubber composite, comprising at least one rubber or elastomer matrix with a first thermal conductivity and an effective amount of pristine nano graphene platelets dispersed in said matrix to make said rubber matrix composite thermally conducting, having a thermal conductivity greater than said first thermal conductivity of the matrix.


US Patent 7999025 - Asymmetrically-functionalized nanoparticles organized on 1D chain

This patent from the University of Utah Research Foundation teaches the integration of metal nanoparticles into polymer 1D chains for applications in suntan lotion, cosmetics, protective coatings, drug delivery, and stain resistant clothing. Claim 1 reads:

1. A one-dimensional nanoparticle chain comprising:

a) a linear polymer having pendant groups; and

b) asymmetrically functionalized nanoparticles attached to the polymer through the pendant groups.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

US Patent 7998748 - Detecting an analyte using a test element with nanofibers

This patent from Roche Diagnostics Operations includes some basic claims to using long polymer nanofibers in diagnostic test elements. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for qualitative or quantitative determination of an analyte in a bodily fluid sample, comprising:

providing a test element having nanofibers comprising fleeces, fabrics, membranes, layers or combinations thereof, at least some of the nanofibers having a length of at least 2 mm and containing more than one polymer bead thereon;

providing a photometric or electrochemical detection reagent with the test element for detecting the analyte in the bodily fluid sample;

applying the bodily fluid sample to the test element, wherein the nanofibers act on the liquid sample; and

determining a quantitative or qualitative property of the bodily fluid sample.


US Patent 7998572 - Self-lubricating nanocoatings

This patent from Caterpillar teaches a way to reduce the aging effects of friction on moving parts of machines by using a nanoparticle coating. Claim 1 reads:

1. A machine component, comprising:

a substrate; and

a coating on at least a portion of the substrate, the coating including:

a base material;

nanoparticles of a lubricant material; and

a non-metallic shell surrounding the nanoparticles of the lubricant material, the shell being composed of a material different than the lubricant material.


US Patent 7998449 - CNT production via cavitation

Cavitation is a process involving the implosion of bubbles in a liquid which produces a pressure wave and is used in such devices as thermal inkjet printers (e.g. Canon's "bubblejet"). This patent by Heiko Ackermann teaches a way that cavitation can be used in the fabrication of nanoparticles such as carbon nanotubes. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method comprising generating cavitation in a fluid through vertical oscillations of the fluid to produce nanoparticles.

US Patent 7998431 - Nanostructured surface for wettability control

Lab-on-a-chip devices often include an electrophoretic system to control the movement of biological material in microfluidic channels. This patent from Alcatel-Lucent teaches a way to use arrays of nanoscale posts which may achieve similar effects for smaller quantities of biofluids. Claim 1 reads:

1. An apparatus, comprising:

a substrate having a surface a volume-tunable-material on said surface; and

fluid-support-structures over said surface, each of said fluid-support-structures being partially embedded in said volume-tunable-material wherein side portions of said fluid-support-structures contact said volume-tunable-material and tops of said fluid-support-structures protrude out of said volume-tunable-material, each of said fluid-support-structures has at least one dimension of about 1 millimeter or less and said fluid-support-structures are moveable in response to a volume transition of said volume-tunable-material.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

US Patent 7998415 - Functionalized particles for composite sensors

This patent is from the Michigan Molecular Institute and includes some basic claims with priority going back to 2003 which may be very relevant to nanocomposite sensors. Claim 1 reads:

1. A chemical sensor comprising:

a transducer element; and

a layer of a composite material disposed on a surface of the transducer element, the composite material comprising a polymer matrix and a solid particulate filler dispersed in the polymer matrix, in which the particulate filler is comprised of functionalized particles having at least one sensory moiety capable of interactions with an analyte.


US Patent 7998367 - Manufacture of metal-CNT composites

This patent is based on research conducted at the University of New Mexico and teaches how to form metal composites with carbon nanotubes to improve the thermal conductivity of heat sinks or other thermal dissipation structures. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of forming a metal-carbon nanotube composite comprising:

providing a plurality of carbon nanotubes;

providing powdered metal;

mixing the plurality of carbon nanotubes with the powdered metal to form a mixture of the carbon nanotubes and the powdered metal;

sintering the mixture of the plurality of carbon nanotubes and the powdered metal followed by cooling to form a solid metal-carbon nanotube composite; and

aligning the carbon nanotubes of the sintered solid metal-carbon nanotube composite.


US Patent 7997281 - Reduction of carbon monoxide and nitric oxide in cigarettes using nanoparticles

This patent from Philip Morris USA teaches how metal oxide nanoparticles can help convert carbon monoxide to carbon dioxide in cigarettes and other smoking products. Claim 1 reads:

1. A cigarette comprising a tobacco rod, cigarette paper and an optional filter, wherein at least one of the tobacco rod, cigarette paper and optional filter comprise nitrided transition metal oxide nanoscale particles and/or nitrided transition metal oxide clusters, and wherein the nanoscale particles and/or clusters comprise iron oxynitride.


US Patent 7997123 - Microfabricated DPN®

This patent from Northwestern University teaches a manufacturing method for Dip-Pen Nanolithography® allowing for a high density 2D array of fluid dispensing microtips to be integrated on a microfluidic chip. Claim 1 reads:

1. A device, comprising a tip having a pointed tip body and an annular shell comprising an etched thin film spaced about the tip body to define an annular empty space about the tip body wherein a semiconductor chip substrate or another thin film defines the tip body.

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Thursday, August 11, 2011

US Patent 7995777 - Thin film transparent acoustic transducer with CNTs

This patent teaches how carbon nanotube coatings can improve the performance of piezoelectric actuators used in audio speakers. Claim 1 reads:

1. A speaker comprising:

a piezoelectric substantially transparent thin film polymer having a first side and a second side;

a first thin film coating of conductive carbon nanotubes supported by the first side of the piezoelectric thin film polymer; and

a second thin film coating of conductive carbon nanotubes supported by the second side of the piezoelectric thin film polymer,

wherein the conductive carbon nanotube thin films are substantially transparent and are approximately 100 nm or less in thickness.

US Patent 7994685 - Artificial nanomuscle

This patent from Czech Technical University in Prague presents a new approach to creating nanoscale actuators which replicate the behavior of natural muscles. Claim 1 reads:

1. An electromechanical transducer comprising

sliding nanoactuators with at least one nanometric dimension,

wherein the electromechanical transducer converts electrical energy to mechanical work by a mutual slip in artificial actin filaments A between artificial myosin filaments M, the artificial actin filaments being connected to artificial Z-plates,

the artificial myosin filaments having artificial myosin heads hanging on artificial filaments N, and

wherein a cyclic change of repulsive electrostatic and attractive Van der Waals interactions between the artificial myosin heads and the artificial myosin filaments M induces swinging of the artificial myosin heads and drives the artificial Z-plates toward each other.


US Patent 7994422 - Photoelectrochemical cell with CNTs

This patent from Samsung teaches a way to increase the efficiency of energy conversion in dye-sensitized solar cells by using carbon nanotubes. Claim 1 reads:

1. A structure, comprising:

a metal oxide semiconductor particle comprising a pore;

a catalytic metal particle arranged within the pore of the porous metal oxide semiconductor particle, a size of the catalytic metal particle being 5 nm to 100 nm; and

a carbon nanotube arranged within the pore of the metal oxide semiconductor particle, wherein the carbon nanotube being grown based on the catalytic metal particle arranged within the pore of the porous metal oxide semiconductor particle.


US Patent 7993750 - CNT/gallium thermal interface

This patent from Hon Hai Precision (Foxconn) teaches a thermal interface material based on gallium and carbon nanotubes which provides high heat conduction with a more compatible coefficient of thermal expansion than conventional metal thermal interfaces. Claim 1 reads:

1. A thermal interface material, comprising:

a continuous array of carbon nanotubes comprising carbon nanotubes and interspaces defined between the carbon nanotubes; and

a low melting point metallic material is located in the interspaces;

wherein the low melting point metallic material is gallium.

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Tuesday, August 09, 2011

US Patent 7993748 - Encapsulated chromonic nanoparticle

Chromonic materials are important to liquid crystal displays and have also been shown to be useful for applications in drug delivery. This patent from 3M teaches chromatic nanoparticles useful for controlled drug delivery. Claim 1 reads:

1. A multilayered chromonic structure comprising:

a chromonic nanoparticle encapsulated in a shell layer of chromonic material, wherein at least one of the chromonic nanoparticle or the shell layer of chromonic material comprises a guest compound.


US Patent 7993541 - Quantum confined atom (QCA) nanomagnets

This patent from Nanocrystals Technology teaches a way to create luminescent quantum confined particles with magnetic materials that can assist in self-assembly of larger luminescent bio-tags and provide a means for moving luminescent nanoparticles with external magnetic fields. Claim 1 reads:

1. A particle of material comprising a plurality of magnetic host atoms in a nanoparticle of a size of 2-10 nm with a single atom of a magnetic dopant confined within and an anti-agglomeration coating surrounding the nanoparticle.


US Patent 7993412 - Nanofibers as a neural biomaterial

This patent from Purdue Research Foundation describes how CNT-polymer nanomaterials can be useful in achieving improved biocompatibility for neural implants. Claim 1 reads:

1. Use of a neural implant that enhances proliferation of neural tissue and minimizes scar formation comprising:

(a) obtaining a neural implantable device comprising a composite nanomaterial, said nanomaterial comprising carbon nanofiber material with nanofibers about 2 to 200 nm in width and a polymer matrix, wherein said nanomaterial is a polyurethane-carbon nanofiber composite, said carbon nanofibers comprise carbon nanotubes, and said carbon nanotubes are functionalized with 4-hydroxynonenal; and

(b) securing the implantable device in the neural tissue where proliferation of neuronal tissue is desired.


Thursday, August 04, 2011

US Patent 7990481 - Display device touch sensor including CNTs

This patent from Samsung teaches how to form a more durable touch panel display which incorporates carbon nanotubes in the sensing electrode. Claim 1 reads:

1. A display device, comprising:

a first substrate;

a second substrate facing the first substrate;

a sensing electrode disposed on the first substrate or the second substrate; and at least one touch sensor protrusion facing the sensing electrode, wherein the touch sensor protrusion comprises an organic material and carbon nanotubes.


US Patent 7990024 - Piezoelectric nanogenerator

This patent from Hon Hai Precision (Foxconn) teaches a way to use piezoelectric nanorods to form a nanogenerator which may be useful as a transducer for wearable electronics which transform the users movements into electrical energy. Claim 1 reads:

1. A nanogenerator, comprising:

a first frame;

a second frame engaging the first frame;

a first conductor located on the first frame and facing the second frame;

a second conductor located under the second frame and facing the first frame;

an array of nano-rods located on the first conductor and extending from a first surface of the first conductor toward the second frame, the nano-rod array comprised of a piezoelectric material; and

an array of electrodes located under the second conductor and extending from a second surface of the second conductor toward the first frame, the electrodes aligned with the nano-rods, a hardness of the electrodes being greater than that of the nano-rods.


US Patent 7989800 - Double gate nanowire field effect diode

This patent from George Mason University teaches a nanowire-based diode which is taught to be useful for photovoltaic switching and solar cell applications. Claim 1 reads:

1. A nanowire field effect junction diode comprising:

a. an electrically insulating transparent substrate;

b. a nanowire disposed on the electrically insulating transparent substrate;

c. an anode contacting a first end of the nanowire;

d. a cathode contacting a second end of the nanowire;

e. an oxide layer covering the nanowire;

f. a first conducting gate: i. disposed on top of the oxide layer; and ii. adjacent with a non-zero separation to the anode; and

g. a second conducting gate: i. disposed on top of the oxide layer; ii. adjacent with a non-zero separation to the cathode; and iii. adjacent with a non-zero separation the first conducting gate.


Wednesday, August 03, 2011

US Patent 7989797 - Connectible nanotube circuit

This latest patent from Intellectual Ventures teaches a modified approach to the nanotube crossbar fabrics developed by Nantero for programmable logic in which a resist is placed between nanotube wires and selectively removed to program interconnections. Claim 1 reads:

1. A carbon nanotube (CNT) circuit template, comprising:

a plurality of CNTs comprising:

a first selected CNT;

a second selected CNT arranged at a selected angle to the first selected CNT; and a removable intermediate layer interposed between the first selected CNT and the second selected CNT, the removable intermediate layer including at least one of a resist composition or a resist material, the at least one of a resist composition or a resist material configured for localized removal, characterized in that the first selected CNT and the second selected CNT are selected to form a junction having a selected electrical property when placed in contact at the selected angle.


US Patent 7988941 - Preparing graphene sheets

This patent from Samsung teaches a step forward in the large scale production of graphene films for applications as transparent electrodes and in flexible solar cells. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of preparing a graphene sheet, the method comprising:

depositing a film consisting of a graphitizing catalyst;

wherein a width of the film is one millimeter or greater;

heat-treating a gaseous carbon source in the presence of the graphitizing catalyst to form graphene, while maintaining the shape of the film; and

cooling the graphene to form a graphene sheet, wherein a width and a length of the graphene sheet are each about 1 millimeter or greater.


US Patent 7988896 - Preparing CNT/polymer composites

This patent from Hon Hai Precision (Foxconn) includes some broad claims for making carbon nanotube/PMMA composite films useful to create capacitor and electromagnetic shielding structures. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method of preparing a carbon nanotube/polymer composite material, comprising the steps of:

providing a carbon nanotube-based film and a pre-polymer solution;

placing the carbon nanotube-based film in a container, and pouring the pre-polymer solution in the container to cover the carbon nanotube-based film; and

keeping the carbon nanotube-based film in the container and polymerizing the pre-polymer solution in the container into a polymer.

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Tuesday, August 02, 2011

US Patent 7988893 - Fabricating CNT yarn

This patent from Hon Hai Precision (Foxconn) is the latest in a series of patents disclosing manufacturing of longer yarn-like structures from carbon nanotube material useful for increasing the mechanical and electrical properties of cables, printed circuit boards, cloths, and other macroscopic articles. Claim 1 reads:

1. A method for fabricating a carbon nanotube yarn, the method comprising:

(a) providing a plurality of carbon nanotube arrays;

(b) pulling out a first carbon nanotube structure from one of the plurality of carbon nanotube arrays;

(c) pulling out a subsequent carbon nanotube structure from another one of the plurality of carbon nanotube arrays;

(d) joining a leading end of the subsequent carbon nanotube structure to a trailing portion of the first carbon nanotube structure by contacting the leading end of the subsequent carbon nanotube structure with the trailing portion of the first carbon nanotube structure, thereby forming a lengthened carbon nanotube structure; and

(f) treating the lengthened carbon nanotube structure with an organic solvent.


US Patent 7988887 - Metal-polymer nanocomposite

This patent from Los Alamos National Security teaches a new way to form substrates for surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) using gold or silver nanostructures. Claim 1 reads:

1. A metal-polymer composite comprising:

a) a thermally-cured dense polyaniline substrate;

b) an acid dopant; and,

c) metal nanostructure deposits wherein the deposits have a morphology dependent upon the acid dopant.


US Patent 7988861 - Tangled nanotube growth

This patent from the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in Paris, France teaches a way to form larger catalyst material from carbon nanotubes. Claim 1 reads:

1. A process for preparing a solid material based on tangled nanofibres and/or nanotubes, comprising:

growing carbon nanotubes and/or nanofibres under constraint within a confined reactor, said growing comprising the following successive steps:

(a) growing the carbon nanotubes and/or nanofibres within the confined reactor, until the nanotubes and/or nanofibres formed occupy an essential of an internal space within the reactor; and

(b) continuing growth of the nanotubes and/or nanofibres under constraint, whereby material in formation applies pressure against the reactor walls.