Mass producing pocket labs

mix-id328072.jpg(Nanowerk News) There is certainly no shortage of  lab-on-a-chip (LOC) devices, but in most cases manufacturers have not yet found  a cost-effective way to mass produce them. Scientists are now developing a  platform for series production of these pocket laboratories.
Ask anyone to imagine what a chemical analysis laboratory looks  like, and most will picture the following scene: a large room filled with  electrical equipment, extractor hoods and chemical substances, in which  white-robed researchers are busy unlocking the secrets behind all sorts of  scientific processes. But there are also laboratories of a very different kind,  for instance labs-on-a-chip (LOCs). These “pocket labs” are able to  automatically perform a complete analysis of even the tiniest liquid samples,  integrating all the required functions onto a chip that’s just a few centimeters  long. Experts all over the world have developed many powerful LOC devices in  recent years, but very few pocket labs have made it onto the market.
Scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Technology  IPT in Aachen want to find out why so many LOCs are not a commercial success.  They are working with colleagues from polyscale GmbH & Co. KG, an IPT  spin-off, and ten other industrial partners from Germany, Finland, Spain, the  United Kingdom, France and Italy on ways to make LOCs marketable. Their ML²  project is funded by the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7), which is  providing a total of 7.69 million euros in funding through fall 2016.
“One of the main reasons LOCs don’t make it to market is that  the technologies used to fabricate them are often not transferrable to  industrial-scale production,” says Christoph Baum, group manager at the IPT.  What’s more, it is far from easy to integrate electrical functions into pocket  labs, and of the approaches taken to date, none has yet proved suitable for mass  production.
Microfluidic negative for structuring films
Microfluidic negative for structuring films. (© Fraunhofer IPT)
Platform for series production
The ML² project aims to completely revise the way pocket labs  are made so they are more suited to series production. “Our objective is to  create a design and production platform that will enable us to manufacture all  the components we need,” says Baum. This includes producing the tiny channel  structures within which liquids flow and react with each other, and coating the  surfaces so that bioactive substances can bond with them. Then there are optical  components, and electrical circuits for heating the channels, for example. The  experts apply each of these components to individual films that are then  assembled to form the complete “laboratory”. The films are connected to one  another via vertical channels machined through the individual layers using a  laser.
The first step the researchers have taken is to adapt and modify  the manufacturing process for each layer to suit mass-production requirements.  When it comes to creating the channel structures, the team has moved away from  the usual injection molding or wet chemical processing techniques in favor of  roll-to-roll processing. This involves transferring the negative imprint of the  channels onto a roller to create an embossing cylinder that then imprints a  pattern of depressions on a continuous roll of film. The electrical circuits are  printed onto film with an inkjet printer using special ink that contains copper  or silver nanoparticles.
Each manufacturing stage is fine-tuned by the researchers in the  process of producing a number of demonstrator LOCs – for instance a pregnancy  test with a digital display. These tests are currently produced in low-wage  countries, but with increased automation set to slash manufacturing costs by up  to 50 percent in future, production would once again be commercially viable in a  high-wage country such as Germany. The team aims to have all the demonstrators  built and the individual manufacturing processes optimized by 2014. Then it will  be a case of fitting the various steps in the manufacturing process together,  making sure they match up, and implementing the entire sequence on an industrial  scale.
Source: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

Read more:

University of Houston Launches Nanotechnology Company (w/video)

201306047919620(Nanowerk News) Out of the test-tube, onto your jeans?  How about your patio deck?

A researcher from the University of Houston has turned his  nanotechnology research into reality, launching a nanotech manufacturing company  in the University’s Energy Research Park.

C-Voltaics will manufacture the coatings, designed to protect  fabric, wood, glass and a variety of other products from water, stains, dust and  other environmental hazards.

“After you wash your jeans, the color starts to fade. It means  you can keep your jeans looking better, longer,” Seamus “Shay” Curran, director  of UH’s Institute for NanoEnergy, said. “Or you might have a very nice white  blouse, but the minute you get ketchup or wine on it, you know you’re going to  have to throw it out. You’re not going to have to throw things away because of  fading or stains.”

The coatings, technically known as self-cleaning hydrophobic  nano-coatings, are designed to repel the elements. Curran said they will be  competitively priced.

“If you want to have a successful business, it’s got to be  better and cheaper,” he said. “Consumers aren’t going to pay for it if it’s  not.” UH is a shareholder in C-Voltaics, which Chief Energy Officer  Ramanan Krishnamoorti said is the first nanotechnology company to be spun off  from the University.


New Report on Graphene goes “Beyond the Hype

201306047919620A new report due to be published this month by Cientifica gets beneath the layers of hype that posit graphene at the top of a pile of wonder materials, promising interesting reading for anyone wanting a real-world evaluation of graphene and its chances of success.

Graphene is touted as teh next wonder material, but can it live up to the hype?

Three years after announcing a substantial capacity increase to its multi-walled carbon nanotube (MWNT) production, Germany‘s Bayer Material Science recently announced that it was completely shutting down its MWNT production. The arms race into nanomaterials capacity-building that began almost a decade ago has, today, amounted to a stockpile of excess product. Nanomaterials, like fullerenes and nanotubes, are now much cheaper due to oversupply, but this matters little because there are no applications to create demand, and the ones that do exist require very small quantities compared with current capacity.

Cientifica’s upcoming Graphene Opportunity Report, takes a similar stance to the UK company’s first edition Nanotechnology Opportunity Report published a decade ago. The report countered the predictions at the time of a trillion-dollar market and a revolution across manufacturing industries, which have largely failed to materialize. Like the Nanotechnology Opportunity Report, the Graphene Opportunity Report purports the real value to be in applications, which means for companies setting themselves up as materials suppliers, most will need to ascend the value chain, developing applications that can exploit their materials and resulting products be it powders, dispersions and even inks.

Hype pitfalls

‘There are something like a hundred graphene companies, or more, worldwide. For materials suppliers that are aiming to make graphene by the multi-tonne quantity, where there are as yet no applications developed, this industry risks going through a similar hype bubble that nanotubes and other nanomaterials sectors have been through,’ says Tim Harper, founder of Cientifica.

A strong point for graphene lies in its ability to be processed as an ink, making it potentially compatible with plastic, or organic, electronics: a group of nanomaterials that can be used to fabricate devices by solution-processable techniques. The plastic electronics industry has gone through its own cycle of hype but is making steady headway so there might be opportunities for graphene to leverage progress made so far and benefit plastic electronics in return. But, as Harper warns, new materials are only taken up into production if they offer a cheaper process to the incumbent one they aim to replace, or they offer far superior performance.

U.S. has a chance to invent the manufacturing technology of tomorrow.

By Antonio Regalado on January 4, 2013

QDOTS imagesCAKXSY1K 8The U.S. has lost millions of manufacturing jobs since 2000. Industries have moved offshore. America’s trade deficit in physical goods is $738 billion a year.

So what’s the path forward?

Countries trying to understand what’s next for their export industries often call Ricardo Hausmann. The Harvard economist and onetime planning minister for Venezuela has developed a kind of economic aptitude test for nations. Using complexity theory and trade data, Hausmann looks at what a country is good at making and predicts what types of more valuable items it could produce next.

That sounds plain enough, but the results of Hausmann’s analyses are often surprising. A country with a competitive garment industry might want to move into electronics assembly—both need an industrial zone with quality electrical power and good logistics. A country that exports flowers may find it has the expertise in cold-storage logistics necessary to spark an export boom in fresh produce.

Hausmann, who is director of Harvard’s Center for International Development, spends much of his time helping nations that are just beginning to modernize their industries, such as Angola and Nigeria. MIT Technology Review asked him what his research methods predict about opportunities for manufacturing in the United States.

Why has the number of American manufacturing jobs been decreasing so quickly?

And then, manufacturing is becoming feasible in more parts of the world. There is more competition, including from countries with much lower wages. As they emulate American production, they take market share.

What’s the best manufacturing strategy for the U.S. in that situation?

It’s certainly not playing defense and trying to save jobs. The U.S. has very, very high wages compared to other countries. Yet it also has a comparative advantage, which is deep knowledge, high R&D intensity, and the best science and technology base in the world.

The step that makes the most sense for the U.S. is to become the producer of the machinery that will power the next global manufacturing revolution. That is where the most complex and sophisticated products are, and that is the work that can pay higher wages.

What kind of revolution are you talking about?

My guess is that developments around information technology, 3-D printing, and networks will allow for a redesign of manufacturing. The world will be massively investing in it. The U.S. is well positioned to be the source of those machines. It can only be rivaled by Germany and Japan.

You look at economies as “product space.” What do you mean by that?

The product space is the space of all possible products. The metaphor is of a forest. Each product is a tree, and companies are monkeys that are organizing and taking over the forest. Empirically, we’ve shown monkeys don’t fly. They move to nearby trees, or to industries for which they have many of the required productive capabilities.

So if you have the capability to make a regional jet, you may be able to make a long-haul aircraft. But if you are making only garments, figuring out how to make any kind of jet will be very hard. Countries that grow find a “stairway to heaven”—a sequence of short jumps that gets them far.

How does that type of analysis help a country know what to do next?

Think about a developing country that exports raw commodities. The traditional way that people have thought about it is to add value: if you have trees, try to export paper or furniture rather than wood.

But the product space may actually argue against the idea that countries should add value to their raw materials. The way a country like Finland got transformed is that they moved from cutting wood to making machines that cut wood, to making machines that cut other things, to other types of machines, and eventually to Nokia.

So what are the opportunities for the U.S. in product space?

The U.S. has the problem that it’s competing with countries that pay much lower wages. American monkeys are under stress from other countries’ monkeys in regards to less complex, easier-to-make products. So the U.S. should look to the taller trees. The tallest trees in product space are pharmaceuticals, chemicals, and machinery. It’s very hard to get into those. Very few countries are in that game.

That is why I say the really long-term play is for the U.S. to be the source of the machinery that will power the coming global manufacturing revolution. The U.S. can grow by using capabilities that few others have.

Is there a manufacturing technology you see as game-changing?

I think 3-D printing could change the dynamics. I use 3-D printing as shorthand for shorter production runs, more design, and much closer to the market. It’s a paradigmatic shift in what manufacturing is going to look like.

Historically you think of manufacturing as an assembly line with thousands of workers, the UAW [United Auto Workers union], and benefits. But here we are talking about very small batches, made close to consumers, and customized. It will still be manufacturing, but a different kind of job in a different kind of company whose organization we don’t yet know.

Will the U.S. create jobs in this way?

If anything, a manufacturing revolution is going to accelerate a trend toward more efficiency. So from that point of view, for the U.S. to base its employment strategy on manufacturing sounds unrealistic. Manufacturing is low-employment.

What else is the U.S good at manufacturing?

If you look broadly at the U.S. product space, the country is super-competitive at agriculture and the industries that support it, like farm machinery, agrochemicals, and genetically modified seeds. It is strong in aerospace with Boeing, GE, Northrop Grumman, and Pratt & Whitney. It is a leader in pharmaceuticals and medical equipment, and it is the clear leader in information technology and the Internet. New industries often arise from the combination of capabilities, such as biotechnology that can move from medicine to seed development and pest control

How well is the U.S. doing in staying competitive?

For a while now, the U.S. has been much less focused on being competitive than most other places are. Americans have the feeling they are born to win, and if they don’t, someone else is cheating. The U.S. has many self-inflicted wounds. It has an infrastructure that’s increasingly lousy and a corporate tax rate higher than most countries’. But the most important [problem] is immigration policy. It’s been a real disaster by preventing the attraction and retention of the high-skilled people who come here to study and then don’t stay.

Quantum Materials Corporation Receives Prestigious Frost and Sullivan Award

QDOTS imagesCAKXSY1K 8Quantum Materials Corp Receives 2012 North American Enabling Technology Award For Advanced Quantum Dot Manufacturing From Frost & Sullivan.



CARSON CITY, Nev., Dec. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Quantum Materials Corporation (QMC), the first manufacturer of Tetrapod Quantum Dots by a mass production continuous flow chemistry process, has been honored with Frost & Sullivan’s 2012 North American Enabling Technology Award for Advanced Quantum Dot Manufacturing. QMC’s “enabling technology” overcomes all quantum dot industry problems by delivering high-quality, lower-cost, and uniform quantum dots in commercial quantities for the reliable supply necessary for industrial production commitments. 

Frost & Sullivan rated QMC higher than competitors in all criteria, specifically highlighting QMC’s low cost of manufacture, mass-production capability, potential for market acceptance, and variety of hybrid quantum dots before concluding, “QMC’s QD technology is poised for large-scale adoption in diverse fields, such as lighting, displays, solar energy, sensors, optoelectronics, and flexible electronics.”

Frost & Sullivan Senior Research Analyst Shyam Krishnan said, “There is no question that the future is very bright for quantum dots. Their ability to interact with photons, electrons, and chemicals to make useful energy, light or other nanoscale actions is as yet unmatched among nanoparticles. Quantum Materials Corporation’s patented quantum dot synthesis that allows scalable mass production will allow them to service a multitude of industries in the near future. That is the reason they have earned the Frost & Sullivan 2012 North America Enabling Technology Award for Advanced Quantum Dot Manufacture.”

Frost & Sullivan is in its 50th year in business with a global research organization of 1,800 analysts and consultants who monitor more than 300 industries and 250,000 companies. The company’s research philosophy originates with the CEO’s 360-Degree Perspective™, which serves as the foundation of its TEAM Research™ methodology. This unique approach enables us to determine how best-in-class companies worldwide manage growth, innovation and leadership.

The total market for quantum dots is expected to reach $7.48 billion by 2022, at a CAGR of 55.2 percent from 2012 to 2022 according to the market research report, “Quantum Dots Market – Global Forecast & Analysis (2012–2022)” by MarketsandMarkets.

“QMC is grateful for this exceptional recognition by Frost & Sullivan of our technologies, innovative manufacturing abilities, and focus to bring quantum dot commercialization forward in partnership with other advanced technology companies,” stated Stephen B. Squires, Quantum Materials Corp CEO and founder. “We are developing solid working relationships with like-minded companies, exploring this new ability to go from drawing board into production years before any recent forecast has predicted it would be possible.”

quantum material corp logoQUANTUM MATERIALS CORPORATION has a steadfast vision that advanced technology is the solution to global issues related to cost, efficiency and increasing energy usage. Quantum dot semiconductors enable a new level of performance in a wide array of established consumer and industrial products, including low-cost flexible solar cells, low-power lighting and displays, and biomedical research applications. Quantum Materials Corporation intends to invigorate these markets through cost reduction and moving laboratory discovery to commercialization with volume manufacturing methods to establish a growing line of innovative, high-performance products


Third Generation Solar Technology And DSC Technology – An Interview With Gordon Thompson



Date Added: Nov 7, 2012 | Updated: Nov 7, 2012


In the first part of this ‘insight from industry’ interview, Gordon Thompson, CEO & Executive Director at Dyesol Ltd, talks to AZoM about recent innovations in solar technology. Interview conducted by Gary Thomas.
What is meant by 3rd generation solar technology – how has solar technology progressed in the last decade?

Solar technology has progressed significantly over the last 10 years although unlike some industries where older technologies become obsolete quicjkly, consumers and developers still work across all ‘generations’ of solar technology. These generations include:

1st Generation – Crystalline Silicon

By far the most prevalent bulk material in solar cells is silicon. It is separated into multiple categories: monocrystalline, polycrystalline and ribbon silicon. Crystalline silicon cells account for around 90 per cent of the market. The annual growth rate is expected to be 30 per cent. CSi uses higher cost, high energy, super “clean-room” manufacturing environment.

2nd Generation – Thin Film Semiconductor

Categorized by the cell materials: amorphous or nano-crystalline, e.g. CdTe. The thin film share, in terms of actual production, was 13.5 per cent in 2010. Thin Film technologies use more rare materials in manufacture.

3rd Generation – Artificial Photosynthesis, Nanotechnology

Third generation PV includes multiple technologies, including DSC, that seek to improve upon first two generations through a combination of cost reduction, increased energy efficiency, improved aesthetics, and opportunity for product integration. Dye Solar Cell technology uses less energy in manufacture – making it a much more environmentally friendly choice, is cheaper to manufacture, and one of the key benefits is that it works well in low-light real-world solar conditions, such as on cloudy days which are common in the heavily populated northern hemisphere.

Could you briefly explain the term ‘DSC technology’ and how this is manufactured?

DSC are made from a few key materials applied in very thin (many times thinner than a human hair) layers to a substrate (such as glass, steel or plastic).  On top is a transparent anode made of fluoride-doped tin dioxide deposited on the back of a glass plate or other substrate. On the back of this conductive plate is a thin layer of titanium dioxide (TiO2), which forms into a highly porous structure with an extremely high surface area. The plate is then immersed in a mixture of a photosensitive ruthenium-polypyridine dye (also called molecular sensitizers) and a solvent. After soaking the film in the dye solution, a thin layer of the dye is left covalently bonded to the surface of the TiO2.

A separate plate is then made with a thin layer of the iodide electrolyte spread over a conductive sheet, typically platinum metal. The two plates are then joined and sealed together to prevent the electrolyte from leaking. Although DSC uses a number of advanced materials, these are inexpensive compared to the silicon needed for traditional silicon solar cells because they require no expensive manufacturing steps.

TiO2, for instance, is already widely used as a paint base.  The materials are applied to a substrate by screen printing, soaking, and baking and the whole process takes place in a much less stringent manufacturing environment – at standards similar to the food manufacturing industry – not the “space-suit”, high energy/high cost, super clean room environments of Crystalline Silicon technology.
When sunlight, indirect light, indoor/artificial light, dappled light, or low light strikes the DSC, the light excites electrons in the dye which are absorbed by the titanium to generate an electric current.

What are the advantages of using DSC technology over Silicon based photovoltaic technology?

DSC technology has been widely recognised as a technology of the future because DSC has a number of outstanding characteristics and benefits, which include:

  • DSC performs well in real world sun conditions – shade, dawn, dusk, dappled light, haze, cloud, and even indoor light
  • Low energy, low cost manufacturing process,
  • No toxic materials,
  • Small layers/quantities of product saves resources,
  • Aesthetically appealing options for building integration, and
  • Widely available raw materials.

These features combine to make DSC a clean, green technology inherently suitable to application in the built environment where the largest part of human activity occurs and where electricity demand is highest.

Good Performance in Real-World Solar Conditions

DSC technology works well – and relatively better than other solar technologies – in real-world solar conditions, including: cloudy days, hazy days, polluted skies, at higher latitudes (i.e. Europe, Asia, North America), at dawn and at dusk, not just at noon on a sunny day.

Low Embodied Energy & Nanotechnology

An important distinction of DSC, which distinguishes this technology from all other photovoltaic systems, is its nanotechnology basis.  One of DSC’s key materials is a nanostructured titanium dioxide (TiO2), which provides the host matrix for the photoactive dye, offers unique electric properties, unique optical properties (such as transparency), and unique mechanical properties.  Nanomaterials can be processed at much lower temperatures.  For example, micrometer-sized TiO2 particles are processed at temperatures around 1,000 ˚C, but nano-TiO2 particles are processed at temperatures around 500 ˚C.  This  saves considerable amounts of energy and means that Dye  Solar Cells have less embodied energy than competitor technologies.  DSC is truly a clean, green technology.

Low Cost Manufacturing Processes

Since traditional PV technologies rely heavily on vacuum processing and require extremely high purity materials and stringent cleanliness for the manufacturing environment, these technologies are generally based on expensive equipment, including the most sophisticated and energy-hungry clean rooms and all factory workers wearing ‘space-suit’-type work gear.  In contrast, DSC manufacture relies mainly on printing, ‘baking’ and packaging processes.  Only relatively moderate control of atmospheric dust and moisture is required for DSC assembly.  Most production steps are similar to high throughput processes used by the coating, printing, lamination and food packaging industries. Therefore, capital expenditure for manufacturing is much lower for DSC, a fact which is certainly appreciated by our commercial partners.

Flexible Applications & Scalable Production

DSC technology may be applied onto a range of substrates, including glass, metal, and polymeric substrates.  DSC technology can be applied onto rigid and flexible substrates and is bifacial, meaning it can take in light from both sides of a pane of glass for example.  DSC technology is also scalable to high levels and the ability to integrate DSC into roll-to-roll manufacturing lines (such as in DSC enabled steel roofing material) makes high volume product manufacture achievable.

Low Environmental Impact – Non-Toxic Raw Materials

None of the materials used in today’s DSC is known to be toxic according to international standards and regulations.  The main ruthenium-based dye used today has been biologically tested (AMES test) and found not to be mutagenic. As DSC does not utilise toxic raw materials in cell production, there is minimal remediation risk and other additional protective measures in production are minimal. In contrast, some of the potential competitor technologies to DSC rely on very toxic materials such as cadmium and rather toxic materials such as selenium used for CdTe (cadmium telluride) and CIGS photovoltaics.
Small quantities of product saves resources

DSC is the technology with the thinnest-possible photoactive absorbing layer: one single molecular layer of a sensitiser dye spread out over a high surface area and low cost titanium dioxide (TiO2) layer.

Added up, the sensitiser layers on any DSC panel amount to a thickness corresponding to around 1 micrometer, i.e. many times thinner than a human hair.

Thus DSC is the ultimate ‘miser’ when it comes to the usage of natural resources.  In comparison, silicon wafers used for standard solar panels, are more than 100x thicker once in the product, plus there are considerable material losses and waste during processing, at the wafer sawing stage in particular.


No other photovoltaic technology offers nearly as much flexibility in terms of colouration and transparency as Dye Solar Cell technology due to the very nature of the Dye Solar Cell chemistry.  Many architects are attracted towards DSC for its virtually endless possibilities of colours and transparency for windows, doors, atriums, skylights and internal dividing walls, all whilst producing clean energy.  DSC windows will not only provide electricity, but can also moderate harsh sunlight and provide thermal and noise insulation. While the most efficient dyes used today are red to yellow – orange, green, grey and brown colours offer attractive efficiencies as well.  DSC windows for office buildings can be coloured in a neutral grey, whereas art galleries and music halls may opt for more vibrant and expressive colours.  DSC integrated into glass houses could filter and scatter stark sunlight, whilst converting the part of the solar spectrum – which does not contribute effectively to the growth of plants to electricity – right at the point of use.

Widely Available Raw Materials

The major chemical materials used in DSC are carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, hydrogen, titanium, and silicon (glass) or iron (steel) for substrates, plus very small amounts of platinum and ruthenium.  With the exception of the latter two, these are all very common materials and there is no shortage in sight.  The most critical component in today’s DSC in terms of natural resources is ruthenium.  Annual production of 20 million m2 of DSC panels producing close to 1.5 GW at maximum power would today require about 2 tonnes of ruthenium, which corresponds to 6-7% of the annual worldwide ruthenium production or to only about 0.03% of the estimated mineable world resources.

Material supply availability is even less significant with platinum since this metal is used in even smaller quantities in DSC compared to ruthenium and because natural platinum resources are significantly higher than those of ruthenium. In comparison, second generation solar technology CIGS (which stands for copper, gallium, indium, and diselenide), requires significant amounts of indium.  Assuming again an annual production of 20 million m2 of CIGS PV panels, about 120 tonnes of indium would be required annually.  This corresponds to about 20% of the annual worldwide indium production or about 1% of the estimated mineable worldwide resources, which is a very significant amount.  With all of the other applications for indium, such as LCD displays, it is likely that indium will become harder and harder to source and thus more and more expensive than today.

A ruthenium dye is used in the manufacture of DSC technology. Why is ruthenium used? Could this be substituted by another element? 

In dye sensitised solar cells, the dye is one of the key components for high-power conversion efficiencies.  Ruthenium based dyes are used because of their better performance and stability characteristics.  Yes, other dyes may be used and there is a body of work on organic dyes as alternatives, however, at the moment these alternates do not match the ruthenium based dyes on performance or stability.


Learn the future predictions on nanotechnology

A doorway to the future of nanotechnology

*** Note to Readers: We have re-posted this information from ‘Motion Perpetual’. We will be following future posts and will continue to re-post with timely topics and information. Cheers!   – BWH –



Scientists have discovered that certain materials develop completely new properties when sized at a nanometer. This has created immense potential for creating completely new materials from existing ones. Scientists made future prediction about nanotechnology showing hope that this technology would create a number of new devices and material in future and those new creations would be applied in a number of fields such as biomaterials, medicine, electronics and energy generation. Due to its immense potential, governments of the different major countries have invested billion dollars in nanotechnology researches. Our site upholds the scientific debate regarding the future implications of this new found technology. We believe in offering people with the most authentic and detailed scientific articles by proficient writers.

What future predictions do scientists make about nanotechnology?

The future prediction attaches much importance to molecular nanotechnology in the 21st century. Also it says that in the days to come a shift is likely to occur from ‘passive’ nanotechnology to ‘active’ nanotechnology. In the future decades, machines using nanotechnology are likely to become more complex; i.e. in place of mere crystals, particles, rods, tubes or atom sheets you will then have machines with motors, valves, pumps, switches etc. Another significant nanotechnology future prediction is related to the generation of nanomaterials. In the recent times, the procedure for the generation or production of nanomaterials results in huge amounts of waste and very little material and is also a very costly procedure. But scientists are hopeful that in the near future this nanomaterial manufacturing procedure can definitely be bettered and made cost-effective. Through our site visitors can learn the future of this revolutionary scientific discovery and its impact on human life. We aim at educating people with true in-depth knowledge.

The future prediction made by scientists with regard to applying nanotechnology in the medical field kindles new flame of hope for cancer patients, patients with nervous system dysfunctions, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries. Even surgeries are likely to be made possible through nanotechnology.

Scientists also predict that in the near future nanotechnology is going to be applied in nanoelectronic devices consisting of nano wires, carbon nano sized tubes. Those devices would be high performance devices running on hybrid molecular theory of electronics. It could be your favorite computer or transistor or any other electronic device. Scientists think that the use of nanoelectronic devices will increase in Medical Diagnostics.

Blue Nano

Blue Nano | Nanomaterials & Clean Energy Products




*** Again, we at Trinity/ GenesisNanoTech are pleased to share this emerging nano-materials company with you. for more information and insight, please feel free to contact the author at:  Follow Us on Twitter: @Genesisnanotech

Manufacturer of high-quality, high-volume nanomaterials with a focus on clean energy and display technologies.


Blue Nano is a nanomaterials manufacturer that develops high quality, cost effective and reliable nano-focused industrial solutions in the highest volumes available anywhere. We serve universities, independent research labs and OEM manufacturers in a wide variety of sectors ranging from automotive to energy to healthcare.

Our technology

Blue Nano’s scientists have developed a process to produce higher quantities of nanomaterials at higher qualities than current manufacturing methods. This process is unique to Blue Nano, and dramatically different and much lower cost than traditional nanomaterials production (which is slow, wasteful, high-cost and capital-intensive).

Our production capacity

We can produce significantly higher quantities of nanomaterials than our closest competitors. In addition, Blue Nano provides the highest quality nanomaterials available anywhere.

Our customers

Blue Nano serves OEM manufacturers, independent research labs, and universities across the globe. Companies from Europe, Asia and North America are successfully using Blue Nano’s products and technical services to further enhance consumer products.

Blue Nano provides wide-ranging selections of nanomaterials and nano-focused solutions for end-user products in a wide variety of industries, including energy, automotive, electronics, chemical, materials and medical. In particular, we have placed an emphasis on cutting-edge clean energy products for solar cells, lithium ion batteries and a variety of chemical and fuel cell catalysts.


Blue Nano’s proprietary SLR-160 conductive film allows for up to 38% greater efficiency due to light trapping and conductivity gains. The SLR-160 can be applied to most types of solar cells including thin-film photovoltaic, crystalline silicon photovoltaic, and concentrator solar panels. The SLR-160 is deposited onto the emitter surface during normal solar cell manufacturing processes.

SLR-160 Features

  • Up to 38% increase in efficiency
  • Better light trapping
  • Higher conductivity
  • Easy to integrate into current manufacturing processes
  • Can be applied to most types of solar cells including thin-film, crystalline silicon and concentrator solar panel


Blue Nano’s BTY-175 is a proprietary blend of carbon nanomaterials designed specifically to extend the life of lithium ion batteries. It features proprietary granular conductive additives to maintain dispersion, increase durability and improve discharge capacity.

BTY-175 Features

  • Proprietary mixture of carbon nanotubes and other additives
  • Improves discharge capacity
  • Up to 4x the durability of carbon black
  • Equal or better performance than vapor-grown carbon fibers
  • Easy to integrate into current manufacturing processes
  • Granularity is customizable according to user specifications
  • Cost-effective

Lithium Ion Batteries

Lithium-ion is the current platform of choice for most battery manufacturers due to its high energy-to-weight ratio, rechargability, and relatively low cost. These batteries are usually constructed with lithium cobalt oxide (LiCoO2) on the cathode and carbon black or graphite on the anode.

One of the primary challenges for lithium ion battery manufacturers is that chemical energy capacity decreases over time; this is why most cell phone users have to replace their battery every 12-18 months regardless of talk time or number of charges.


Blue Nano’s porous catalyst technology increases reactive surface area, minimizing expensive material usage and increasing power density for both fuel cells and other chemical catalysts.

Fuel Cell Catalyst Features

  • Replaces carbon-supported platinum nanoparticles (Pt/C) as the primary catalyst inside proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells
  • Reduces precious material loading by approximately 99%
  • Increases power density by up to 77x
  • Far exceeds the Department of Energy’s performance standards for 2015
  • Plug-and-play compatibility with most fuel cell designs
  • Compatible with hydrogen, ethanol, methanol and formic acid fuels

Nanoco Group PLC: A world leading developer and manufacturer of quantum dots

Nanoco Technologies - Bulk Quantum Dots Manufacturer





Nanoco Group PLC and its operating subsidiary Nanoco Technologies Ltd partner major R&D and blue-chip industrial organisations in the development of applications incorporating semiconductor nanoparticles, “quantum dots”.

Nanoco Technologies is unique in the nanomaterials market as a company that manufacture large quantities of quantum dots. Our molecular seeding process for the bespoke manufacture of these nanoparticles on a commercial scale is protected by worldwide patents.

Nanoco Technologies is the only manufacturer currently able to supply production quantities of these nanoparticles which do not use a regulated heavy metal. We are the only manufacturer able to respond to orders for large quantities of bespoke quantum dots, and we are leading the way in customising the functionalisation of quantum dots enabling chemical linkage for biological and other specific uses.

The bulk manufacture of quantum dots provides our partners with the platform to develop a wide variety of next-generation products, particularly in application areas such as display technology, lighting, solar cells and biological imaging.

Nanoco Technologies’ research and manufacturing headquarters was established in Manchester (UK) in 2001. The company currently operates facilities in the UK and Japan.

About this Site
This is the corporate website of Nanoco Technologies Ltd. Please make use of the navigation provided to find out more about our products and their applications. This site also contains useful information for prospective partner organisations, employees and investors, as well as visitors with an academic interest in our research, and general readers who would like to find out more about the fascinating subject of quantum dots.

Nanoco Signs Joint Agreement with Asian Company

14/02/2012 Manchester

Nanoco Group plc (AIM: NANO), a world leader in the development and manufacture of cadmium-free quantum dots and other nanomaterials, announces that it has signed a commercial joint development agreement (JDA) with a major electronics company in Asia in connection with the use of the Company’s cadmium-free quantum dots (CFQD™) in the electronics company’s display products.

It is anticipated that further agreements with the electronics company will be signed on the successful completion of the initial development work.

Michael Edelman, Nanoco’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We’re delighted to have signed this joint development agreement with a major electronics company in Asia. This agreement further extends our involvement in the display market and increases the number of countries in which we have commercial relationships.”


Follow on Twitter at: