Heidelberg Instruments to develop CU nanotechnology platform. Circuitry-shrinking technique enables tinier computer chips, solar cells and other nanoscale devices.

BOULDER, Colo., June 22, 2011 – Heidelberg Instruments GmbH (Heidelberg, Germany) and the University of Colorado recently completed an exclusive option agreement for a CU technique that shrinks the circuitry of nano-devices, enabling the creation of smaller computer chips and other nanodevices. The method was developed by CU-Boulder researchers Robert McLeod (associate professor of electrical, computer, and energy Engineering), Tim Scott (visiting research assistant professor of mechanical engineering and chemical and biological engineering) and Christopher Bowman (professor of chemical and biological engineering). 

To create nano-scale circuitry, the patent pending nanolithography method uses tightly focused beams of blue light to record lines and dots thousands of times smaller than the width of a human hair onto a substrate such as silicon. This initial step occurs in all types of nanoengineering, but the new system developed by McLeod’s team uses a second beam of ultraviolet light to “erase” the edges of the pattern, resulting in much smaller structures. In turn, this enables the manufacture of smaller computer chips, solar cells and other nanoscale devices. 

 “University of Colorado is one of the leading R&D centers making major inroads in nano scale technology development,” said Alexander Forozan, Head of Global Business Development at Heidelberg Instruments. “We are thrilled to work with CU’s outstanding staff and look forward to a continuing and long-standing relationship.

“We are excited to have Heidelberg as a partner for this technology,” added Ted Weverka, a licensing manager at the University of Colorado Technology Transfer Office. “Heidelberg’s technical know-how and market savvy ensure a strong future for this invention.”

In 2010, McLeod received a National Science Foundation CAREER Award for his work in this area, one of the nation’s most prestigious honors directed toward young faculty.

About Heidelberg Instruments GmbH:

With an installation base in over 30 countries, Heidelberg Instruments is a world leader in production of high precision maskless lithography systems.  These systems are used for direct writing and photomask production by some of the most prestigious universities and industry leaders in the areas of MEMS, BioMEMS, Nano Technology, ASICS, TFT, Plasma Displays, Micro Optics, and many other related applications. www.himt.de

About the Technology Transfer Office and the University of Colorado:

The CU Technology Transfer Office (TTO) pursues, protects, packages, and licenses to business the intellectual property generated from research at CU. The TTO provides assistance to faculty, staff, and students, as well as to businesses looking to license or invest in CU technology. For more information about technology transfer at CU, visit www.cu.edu/techtransfer

The University of Colorado is a premier teaching and research university with four campuses: the University of Colorado at Boulder, the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, the University of Colorado Denver and the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. More than 55,000 undergraduate and graduate students are pursuing academic degrees on CU campuses. CU is ranked seventh among public institutions in federal research expenditures in engineering and science by the National Science Foundation. Academic prestige is marked by the university’s four Nobel laureates, seven MacArthur “genius” Fellows, 18 alumni astronauts and 19 Rhodes Scholars. For more information, go to www.cu.edu.

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