Nanofabrication at the Desktop

A big problem with bootstrapping technology (getting it going) is that sometimes it’s hard to make the tools that you need to make the tools that you need to make something else. 3D printing is showing tremendous potential to blow away obstacles in that area by making it easier to make tools. But being able to fabricate structures at the nanoscale level and moving it to the desktop is a quantum leap beyond that. This is a tool that can make tools that can make tools and has an amazing potential to accelerate technology. It may be comparable to the impact the Gutenberg printing press had on human civilization.

Desktop printing at the nano level could revolutionize nanotechnology fabrication – [nanowerk.com]

A new low-cost, high-resolution tool is primed to revolutionize how nanotechnology is produced from the desktop, according to a new study by Northwestern University researchers.

Currently, most nanofabrication is done in multibillion-dollar centralized facilities called foundries. This is similar to printing documents in centralized printing shops. Consider, however, how the desktop printer revolutionized the transfer of information by allowing individuals to inexpensively print documents as needed. This paradigm shift is why there has been community-wide ambition in the field of nanoscience to create a desktop nanofabrication tool.

“With this breakthrough, we can construct very high-quality materials and devices, such as processing semiconductors over large areas, and we can do it with an instrument slightly larger than a printer,” said Chad A. Mirkin, senior author of the study and a world-renowned pioneer in the field of nanoscience.

SEE ALSO:
Nanoprinting
A Factory That Can Make Anything
1398 – Gutenberg

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