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December 7, 2010 - Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (AFM/SPM), announced today that it has installed a dual system order for a Cypher™ AFM and MFP-3D-SA™ AFM at the Cluster of Excellence “Smart Interfaces" (CSI), Technische Universität Darmstadt in Germany in the lab of Professor Robert Stark, new professor for Physics of Surfaces in the Materials and Earth Sciences Department, and Dr. Elmar Bonaccurso, head of the new young researcher group, Experimental Interface Physics in Mechanical Engineering. At the CSI, fluid-surface interfaces are investigated over nine length scales – from airplane wings to molecular and atomic interactions. The CSI group will use the Asylum AFM to probe fluid-surface interactions at the nanometer scale, matching this to the latest advances in atomic and molecular dynamic flow theory.
Professor Stark explained "We plan to investigate time-resolved atomic and molecular processes in liquids to gain a deeper insight and understanding of boundary dynamics. The ultimate goal of this highly interdisciplinary approach is to design the molecular boundary for benefits in the macroscopic world. The Asylum Research AFMs allow us to obtain the complete picture, from elasticity and material properties through high-speed, time-resolved atomic and molecular process imaging in liquids. We are very pleased with the possibilities offered by this advanced instrumentation and are also looking forward to working closely with the competent teams at Asylum Research and Atomic Force.”
Dr. Lars Niemann, research coordinator at the CSI added, "As a fairly young research institute, it was important for us to purchase only the best instrumentation available, both to attract the best researchers and to ensure immediate scientific competitiveness – as such Asylum Research was a natural choice.”
Benjamin Holmes, Sales Manager at our European subsidiary Atomic Force F&E GmbH commented, "From starring in the fictional CSI Miami television show to being chosen by the CSI Darmstadt, once again Asylum Research AFMs are confirmed as the best instruments for all investigations. Clearly, modern atomic force microscopy is too broad an area for one size fits all, and that's why we at Atomic Force F&E are really pleased by the research synergies that the Cypher and the MFP-3D offer. Any cutting-edge laboratory is ideally served with the speed and performance of Cypher and the flexibility of the MFP-3D. We are seeing a clear trend toward multi-instrument facilities and, thanks to our unique research-oriented approach, no company is better placed to serve these requirements than Asylum Research."
Shown with the Cypher AFM system, left to right: Dr. Lars Niemann, CSI Research Coordinator; Benjamin Holmes, Sales Manager for Atomic Force; Agnieska Voss, PhD student; Friedhelm Freiss, Service Manager for Atomic Force; and Robert Stark, Professor of Physics at Surfaces at the CSI Darmstadt.
November 2, 2010 - Asylum Research, the technology leader in Scanning Probe and Atomic Force Microscopy (SPM/AFM) has announced the new NanoRack™ Sample Stretching Stage Accessory for its MFP-3D™ AFMs. This high-strain, high-travel manual stretching stage provides two axis stress control of tensile loaded samples under different loads. Automatic load cell calibration provides integrated force measurements with MFP-3D images or other measurements, and returns both stress and strain data. Maximum sample load is 80N. Applications for the NanoRack stage include direct measurements to determine interfacial adhesive strength of nano- and micro-scale domains within polymer blends, especially blends generated in-situ in polymerization reactors. Additional applications include measurements of forces required to induce cracking in a variety of biological and inorganic materials. The stage is compatible with a wide variety of AFM imaging techniques including Phase and Dual AC™ for enhanced contrast of material properties, as well as the MFP-3D’s Ztherm™ option for localized thermal analysis.
Dr. Jason Cleveland, Asylum Research CEO, commented, “Currently there are no direct measurement methods for observing nanoscale features and effects under stress control. Our new NanoRack Sample Stretching Stage has already proven extremely useful in industry and academia for measurements of adhesive strength in polymers and stress-induced deformations and cracking in a variety of materials.”
Added Product Development Engineer, Paul Costales, “The NanoRack exemplifies the way in which Asylum Research develops new products through customer interaction and collaboration. We are pleased to see our users already publishing with data only the NanoRack can allow.”
October 14, 2010 - Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe and atomic force microscopy (SPM/AFM), announces that it will be conducting a tour throughout the UK and Ireland over the coming months to bring its revolutionary Cypher AFM to leading universities across the region. Three legs of the Cypher Scan Tour in the UK will take place this autumn with more dates to follow for next year (including Ireland). Each day’s agenda will include an initial presentation describing the Cypher AFM and its unique features, followed by an opportunity to “look inside the box” and really get to grips with its revolutionary design. Attendees will then be able to see Cypher in action, with a demonstration of the unique capabilities of the world’s highest resolution AFM, including closed loop atomic resolution, fast scanning, and advanced ease of use features such as SpotOn™ automatic laser and photodiode alignment. The afternoon session is open for imaging attendee’s samples. Three slots will be available each afternoon for attending groups to assess their own samples using their scanning modes of choice. The first three Scan Tour locations will be the University of Leeds (November 16 to 18), the London Centre for Nanotechnology (November 30 to December 2), and the University of Warwick (December 14 to 16). Please contact Chris Mulcahy for additional information (email@example.com; +44(0)1869 255775) or go to www.AsylumResearch.com/UKTour/ to register. Registration is free and all interested parties are welcome. Attendance is limited so early registration is recommended.
Dr. Chris Mulcahy, Managing Director of Asylum Research UK Ltd. commented: “We are thrilled to be taking to the road with Cypher across the UK and Ireland. The Scan Tour will be a great opportunity for all AFM users to see the world’s highest resolution AFM in action and with several locations planned across the whole of the UK and Ireland in both 2010 and 2011, we’ll never be too far away!”
September 22, 2010 – Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (AFM/SPM), announced today that it has received an order for the Cypher™ AFM from the Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC) at the Instituto Microelectronica in Madrid, Spain. Professor Ricardo Garcia’s group at CSIC will use the new Cypher system for high resolution imaging /detection of biomolecules and processes, as well as fundamental studies of nanomechanical systems in liquids.
Dr. Garcia commented, “The distinctive feature of the Cypher AFM that drew my attention was the ability to perform sophisticated dynamic AFM experiments with small cantilevers at high imaging speeds. We are excited to have an instrument of Cypher’s calibre in our lab.”
Commented Ludger Weisser, Managing Director for Atomic Force DE, Asylum Research’s representative in Europe, “At Atomic Force we are particularly proud of Professor Ricardo Garcia's choice, as it is a seal of approval from one of Europe's top AFM researchers for the world's top AFM. The Cypher AFM is proving a resounding success – its ease-of-use, speed and performance are unrivaled, permitting both an increased throughput and a scientific competitive edge for our users. Cypher is already performing excellently in several European research labs, and user satisfaction is very high. We are confident that, as elsewhere, the first Cypher AFM in Iberia will lead to many others.
Added Roger Proksch, Asylum Research President, “They already have the best soccer team in the world and now they have the best AFM. 2010 is truly a great year for Spain!”
September 16, 2010 – Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (AFM/SPM) announces its AFM in Biology Class to be held November 3-5, 2010 in Santa Barbara, California. The class is open to all Atomic Force Microscopy users that want to increase their knowledge of AFM in biology and life sciences. A new high resolution imaging lab on the Cypher™ AFM, the world’s highest resolution AFM, has been added to the curriculum. This world-renowned class, now in its 12th session, combines lecture with hands-on sessions for personal instruction and interaction with the Asylum technical staff.
“We cover all the essential AFM topics that biologists need and want to learn about – from sample preparation to advanced imaging and force measurements,” said Sophia Hohlbauch, Applications Scientist. “The breadth of AFM experience of our staff is unsurpassed – both our President and CEO participate and class attendees have access to all of our scientific staff. The class is fun, with a good mix of lecture and equipment time.”
Commented former student Dr. Xiaohui (Frank) Zhang, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai, “It was such a wonderful experience at AR! Many thanks again for all the help and courtesy extended to me. I will for sure send my students to future Asylum Bio classes.”
Flame Burgmann, CSIRO, Australia, also commented, “Thanks again for a great course, it really was very useful and gave us all some valuable information!”
The three day course is held twice a year. Topics include sample prep, force measurements, and imaging on DNA, proteins, lipids and live cells. Hands-on labs will be done on the MFP-3D™ Stand Alone, MFP-3D-BIO™ and now the Cypher AFM. Class size is limited. A PDF of the registration form can be downloaded here.
Sept. 8, 2010 - Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (SPM/AFM), and Harvard University’s Center for Nanoscale Systems (CNS) will conduct a free workshop with a focus on nanomechanics to be held at Harvard University, Haller Hall (Geo Museum Room 102), September 30 to October 1, 2010. This workshop will include lectures and equipment demonstrations on atomic force microscopy (AFM) applications from cell mechanics to semiconductor characterization. The equipment demonstrations will allow attendees to “ask the expert” during real-time imaging sessions on the Asylum Research MFP-3D™ AFM.
“This is an excellent opportunity for our researchers to learn the type of work being done in AFM in both materials and life science applications. The Asylum Research scientists are extremely knowledgeable and the tips and tricks that they provide during the equipment demonstrations are invaluable,” said Jiangdong Deng, Harvard CNS Nanofabrication Facility Manager.
“We are very pleased that Harvard has invited us to do our second workshop here. With a large AFM community in the area, it’s an ideal venue to highlight the research that’s being done at Harvard and the many other excellent research institutions in New England,” commented Asylum Research Scientist and former Harvard postdoctoral research fellow, Nicholas Geisse.
The workshop is free to all researchers that are looking to learn more about AFM. Attendees must register and equipment demonstrations will be based on a first-come, first-served basis due to limited space. Registration and additional information can be found on the workshop website at http://www.asylumresearch.com/Events/Harvard.
August 26, 2010 - Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (AFM/SPM), announced today that it has delivered a dual system order for a Cypher™ AFM and an MFP-3D-BIO™ AFM to the University of Melbourne’s Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. Dr. Raymond Dagastine’s group will use the Asylum AFMs to develop nano-scale experiments and theories to measure and predict interactions, collisions, and coalescence between droplets and bubbles that underpin innovative applications of foams and emulsions and other soft matter materials. The approach provides a “front seat” view of how drops or bubbles collide in solution and how the physical mechanisms are dependent on the types of molecules coating their interfaces.
Dr. Dagastine commented, “We chose the combination of the Asylum MFP-3D and Cypher AFMs for their visionary design and stability, the cross compatibility of the software, and the ease of implementing specialized user controls and inputs. This coupled with Asylum’s superior technical support makes the MFD-3D-BIO and Cypher the ideal combination of instruments for high-end research and surface characterization on the nano-scale. These outstanding AFMs will allow us an unprecedented opportunity to visualize the interactions and surfaces in soft matter materials through high resolution imagining on the nano to molecular scale, as well as cutting edge force measurements on the nano-scale with integration of a variety of optical characterization methods.”
Shane Huntington of The Innovation Group, Asylum’s representative in Australia for over a decade, commented, “As a company made up of AFM researchers, we are excited to be working with distinguished users such as Dr. Dagastine. We offer collaboration with our customers on the details of their research and stand ready with long-term service and support. The Innovation Group has installed more AFM systems in Australia than the current reps of all other AFM companies combined.”
August 13, 2010 - Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe and atomic force microscopy, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) have just received the prestigious Microscopy Today Innovation Award for the development of Band Excitation (BE), a new breakthrough scanning probe microscopy (SPM) technology. Band excitation allows more rapid probing of energy dissipation at the nanoscale than previously possible, enabling scientists to characterize a sample’s electrical, magnetic, and mechanical energy conversion and dissipation properties at standard imaging rates.
“We’re extremely excited to have won this prestigious award,” said Roger Proksch, President of Asylum Research. “Our collaboration with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory has put forth many new cutting-edge developments in the field of SPM, including the Piezo Force Module and Switching Spectroscopy PFM. The Band Excitation method presents a fundamentally new method for data acquisition and processing in SPM. Asylum Research and our collaborators continue to lead the industry with technical innovation as confirmed by this award.”
“We believe Band Excitation will be the harbinger of a new family of SPMs,” said Dr. Sergei Kalinin, co-inventor and researcher at the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences (CNMS) at ORNL. “This method provides an alternative to well-known lock-in-based detection methods, and can revolutionize this field by providing the potential for quantitative and artifact-free dissipation imaging. We are looking forward to developing new applications for BE through our partnership with Asylum Research.”
"This award acknowledges the important step forward that this technique represents and signals where the field of microscopy can and will go in the future," noted Dr. Stephen Jesse, another co-inventor from the CNMS. "The speed and flexibility of the latest generation of Asylum SPM controllers permit the fine tuning and fast acquisition of data streams needed to take us from mere imaging to an arena of information-rich insight into cantilever-surface interactions and material functionality."
Band Excitation captures the full tip dynamics during a scan, and therefore let’s you see the transfer function or ‘cantilever tune’ everywhere. From this information one can see maps of dissipation and non-linearities directly. Shown is a 15X15 micron BE acoustic force microscopy scan of a polymer blend from which the Q-factor has been extracted. A clear contrast can be seen between the different constituent materials. Also shown are the average transfer functions over the regions indicated by blue and red dots on the map. The ability to capture tip motion in greater detail makes nanoscale measurements of material properties possible.
About Oak Ridge National Laboratory
July 13, 2010 – Asylum Research, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), and R&D Magazine have announced that the new Ztherm Modulated Local Thermal Analysis Option for Asylum’s MFP-3D™ and Cypher™ Atomic Force Microscopes (AFMs) has been awarded the R&D100 Award for 2010. Ztherm provides highly localized heating with sensitivity to ≤10-22 liter (sub-zeptoliter) materials property changes, more than an order of magnitude improvement in volume over that previously available with commercial systems. A standing problem with existing AFM-based thermal analysis systems is thermally induced bending of the cantilever that results in spurious deflection signals and variable loads being applied during heating. Asylum and ORNL have developed a patent-pending cantilever compensation and control solution that corrects this problem, providing constant-load detection of thermally induced melting (Tm), phase transitions (Tg) and other morphological and compliance effects for materials studies and material identification – with 10nm spatial resolution and ultimately at the single molecule level. The R&D100 Award will be presented to the Asylum Research/ORNL team at the awards banquet in Orlando in November 2010.
“The recent results I’ve seen from Asylum’s Ztherm Modulated Thermal Analysis are the highest resolution thermal measurements by anyone to date. Truly impressive,” commented Dr. William King, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
In addition to standard thermal analysis capabilities, the Ztherm package can also be used to evaluate contact stiffness and dissipation as a function of temperature with advanced techniques such Dual AC Resonance Tracking (DART) and Band Excitation (BE). The contact stiffness and dissipation – measured at the cantilever resonance – are much more sensitive to temperature dependent properties, including surface melting and transition temperatures, than static deflection of the probe as is conventionally measured in AFM. In addition, integrated piezo actuation allows high resolution AC imaging of samples for surface topographical mapping before and after thermal measurements.
Dr. Roger Proksch, Asylum Research President commented, “Our new Ztherm option is the most powerful thermal analysis package on the market today, with sensitivity, resolution and capabilities beyond anything else available. We believe Ztherm will enhance existing research avenues and open up new directions for analysis of thermal effects and material identification on scales previously impossible.”
Said Dr. Maxim Nikiforov of ORNL, “Ztherm’s unprecedented resolution opens new horizons for the development of new types of plastics, as well as better understanding of failure mechanisms for existing materials. It has already proven useful for many types of materials ranging from bio-polymers to electrically-active polymers, and is applicable across many industries, including healthcare, energy materials, construction materials and others.”
Added Dr. Jason Cleveland, Asylum Research CEO, “For the third year in a row, our research and development efforts have been validated by the R&D100 Award. We are proud and gratified to have been acknowledged once again for our technology leadership in scanning probe and atomic force microscopy.”
Heat interrogation of polymers: from nanoscale to macroscale
About R&D Magazine and the R&D100 Award
The winning of an R&D100 Award provides a mark of excellence known to industry, government, and academia as proof that the product is one of the most innovative of the year. Winners are selected by an independent judging panel of technology experts and editors of R&D Magazine. Since its founding in 1959 as Industrial Research, R&D Magazine has served research scientists, engineers and technical staff at laboratories around the world, providing timely, informative news and useful technical articles that broaden readers’ knowledge of the research and development industry. R&D Magazine is a publication of Advantage Business Media (www.advantagebusinessmedia.com). Since 1963, the R&D 100 Awards have identified revolutionary technologies newly introduced to the market. Many of these have become household names, helping shape everyday life for many Americans. These include the flashcube (1965), the automated teller machine (1973), the halogen lamp (1974), the fax machine (1975), the liquid crystal display (1980), the printer (1986), the Kodak Photo CD (1991), the Nicoderm antismoking patch (1992), Taxol anticancer drug (1993), lab on a chip (1996), and HDTV (1998).
June 28, 2010 - Abstracts for contributed talks and posters are now being accepted for the International Workshop for Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM) for Energy Applications. Co-organized by Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and Asylum Research, the workshop will held at ORNL September 15-17, 2010. Deadline for abstract submission is August 13. The program will include invited and contributed talks covering recent advances in characterization of energy-relevant materials systems using SPM/AFM techniques, as well as the state of the art in energy dissipation and transformation measurements by SPM/AFM. The three-day meeting will also include a poster session, as well as an equipment lab and hands-on tutorials for demonstration of recently developed dynamic and multi-spectral SPM/AFM modes on Asylum’s Cypher™ and MFP-3D™ SPM/AFMs. The keynote talk will be on “Local Probing of Carrier Dynamics in Polymer Photovoltaic Materials” by David Ginger of the University of Washington.
Detailed information on abstract submission, agenda, etc. can be found at www.asylumresearch.com/Events/Energy. Abstracts can be submitted on the following topics (but are not limited to):
June 24, 2010 – Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (AFM/SPM), announces that it has installed the first Cypher AFM in Mexico at the Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Nucleares (ININ) facility in Salazar. The system was installed by personnel from Micra Nanotecnologia and Asylum Research in the lab of Dr. Manuel Espinosa at ININ. Dr. Espinosa’s group will use Cypher to investigate new materials, and to study archeological materials and art restoration processes. This work will include internal projects as well as collaboration projects with other national research institutes and universities.
ININ, Asociación Mexicana de Microscopía, Micra Nanotecnologia and Asylum Research are also co-sponsoring a Mexico Atomic Force Microscopy Seminar at ININ’s Ocoyoacac facility, July 19-22. Agenda and registration information can be found here. Micra Nanotecnologia invites existing and prospective AFM users to attend the Seminar and/or to contact them for more information or a Cypher demonstration (Carlos Segovia, +52 (55) 8502-5000, firstname.lastname@example.org).
Carlos Segovia, President of Micra Nanotecnologia, Asylum’s representative in Mexico, Argentina, and Central America, commented, “We are excited about our first Cypher installation in Mexico, and Dr. Espinosa is especially gratified since his new Cypher is also the first AFM at the ININ. We welcome everyone interested in AFM to attend our Seminar at ININ to learn more about AFM and to see Cypher in action.”
Added Dr. Espinosa of ININ, “Our new Cypher AFM is the first one of its kind in Mexico. This instrument is being applied in the study of surface measurements of nanomaterials like nanocatalysts, nanotubes, metallic nanowires, bimetallic nanoparticles, ionic crystals doped with rare earths, thin films, hybrid materials, biological surfaces, as well as the analysis of cultural heritage. The Cypher AFM will bring new possibilities in our scientific group to study materials surfaces in the nanoworld.”
Shown with the Cypher AFM system, left to right: Dr. Gilberto Mondragon-Galicia (ININ), Ing. Pavel Lopez (ININ), Ing. Carlos Segovia (Micra Nanotecnologia), Dr. Manuel Espinosa (Head of the Laboratory at the ININ), Ing. Miguel Urbano (Micra Nanotecnologia), Cristian Urrutia (Micra Nanotecnologia), and Amir Moshar (Asylum Research).
June 9, 2010 – Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (AFM/SPM), announces that its new automated AFM/SPM Probe Store is now online. The probe store provides simple search, sort, selection, quotation and purchase for a wide variety of different probes. Probe sort/search can be performed in seconds by application (e.g. biology, force measurements, electrical probing, steep sidewalls etc), type (e.g. contact, AC/tapping, coating, length), length, frequency, tip radius, composition/material, spring constant and more.
Asylum’s Probe Store offers hundreds of different probe types for every application, including Asylum’s own line of probes as well as probes manufactured by Olympus, NanoWorld, Nanosensors, and SmartTip. Detailed description, specifications, and SEM images of each probe are provided. The Store can be found here or from the Probes menu selection on our main dropdown menu.
Asylum is also offering a Summer Kickoff Special: Through August 31, online Probe Store purchases (not including tax/shipping) will earn a free pack of tapping/AC mode probes:
• $200 - $999: earns FREE 2-pack of tapping/AC mode probes
Hector Cavazos, Probe Manager at Asylum Research, commented, “We are pleased to offer this exciting new service to our customers to meet their imaging and measurement needs. Although we have offered AFM probes for some time, the new Probe Store provides a simple and fast interface for proper probe selection, quotation and direct ordering. We encourage our AFM customers, as well as researchers using other systems to browse our site and take advantage of our Kickoff Special."
May 13, 2010 - The revolutionary new Band Excitation (BE) technique, co-developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and Asylum Research, has provided clues to the origins of unique properties of materials including spin and cluster glasses, phase-separated oxides, polycrystalline ferroelectrics, and ferromagnets, that are rooted in their highly disordered structures. These behaviors influence the scaling properties of the materials, including the thickness of thin films at which improved properties manifest. So-called "Rayleigh behaviors" have a direct bearing on the properties of nanoscale materials and, eventually, the uniformity of nanoscale devices. The new observations, which were made possible by advances in scanning probe microscopy (SPM) at ORNL's Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences and Asylum Research, may result in the rethinking of 100-year-old theories behind the "quanta of nonlinearity" and properties of heterogeneous materials. This work is funded by the Department of Energy’s Basic Energy Sciences CNMS user program. The principal investigators for this ground-breaking work are Stephen Jesse and Sergei Kalinin of ORNL, and Susan Trolier-McKinstry from Penn State. The findings were recently published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), April 20, 2010 entitled “Collective dynamics underpins Rayleigh behavior in disordered polycrystalline ferroelectrics.”
Sergei Kalinin of ORNL commented, “The nonlinear responses are a ubiquitous aspect of disordered materials that is directly linked to their unique functional properties. Our studies illustrate that the emergence of the nonlinear behavior is associated with large-scale collective responses, providing new clues to century-old problems.”
Added Roger Proksch, President of Asylum Research, "The amazing aspect of BE measurements is that the local nonlinearity is measured quantitatively with less than 10% absolute error in volumes millions of times smaller than those addressable by macroscopic measurements. This is highly unusual for SPM."
Spatial maps of non-linearity for different film thicknesses (thicknesses shown across top). The onset of nonlinearity with thickness proceeds through formation and merger of clearly visible micron-scale clusters with bulk nonlinearity value, as opposed to gradual increase of average nonlinearity.
March 30, 2010 - Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (AFM/SPM) announces a new application note by the Ginger group at the University of Washington, focusing on their work on Organic Photovoltaics (OPVs). The application note is entitled “New Scanning Probe Techniques for Analyzing Organic Photovoltaic Materials and Devices,” by Rajiv Giridharagopal, Guozheng Shao, Chris Groves, and David S. Ginger, Department of Chemistry, University of Washington, Seattle. All work for the application note was performed using an MFP-3D-BIO™ Atomic Force Microscope from Asylum Research.
The note reviews the instrumental issues associated with the application of scanning probe microscopy techniques, such as photoconductive atomic force microscopy and time-resolved electrostatic force microscopy, which have been shown to be useful in the study of nanostructured organic solar cells. These techniques offer unique insight into the underlying heterogeneity of OPV devices and provide a nanoscale basis for understanding how morphology directly affects OPV operation and efficiency. The note is available on request from Asylum Research and can also be downloaded at here.
"The customizability of the MFP-3D and Asylum's support were critical to the success of the experiments that got me tenure," said co-author and Group Leader, David Ginger. “This note summarizes the instrumental side of our work to date and, in particular, describes some of the new SPM techniques that have been proven to be very useful in evaluating OPV materials.”
March 23, 2010 - The Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (SPM/AFM), are co-organizing the International Workshop for Scanning Probe Microscopy for Energy Applications, to be held at ORNL September 15-17, 2010. This workshop of invited and contributed talks will cover the recent advances in characterization of energy-relevant materials systems using SPM/AFM techniques, as well as the state of the art in energy dissipation and transformation measurements by SPM/AFM. The three-day meeting will also include a poster session, as well as an equipment lab and hands-on tutorials for demonstration of recently developed dynamic and multi-spectral SPM/AFM modes on Asylum’s Cypher™ and MFP-3D™ SPM/AFMs. The keynote talk will be on “Local Probing of Carrier Dynamics in Polymer Photovoltaic Materials” by David Ginger of the University of Washington.
Detailed information on the agenda, presentations, and registration can be found at here.
Major topics to be covered include:
“Energy generation, storage, and conversion systems are an integral component of emerging green technologies, including solar power, automotive, and storage components of solar and wind energy economics. The microscopic mechanisms underpinning solar cell, battery and fuel cell operations in the nanometer to micron range are currently not well understood. This workshop is designed to bring together leading scientists in these energy applications of SPM/AFM to share their research and spur additional work to advance the field, said Roger Proksch, President of Asylum Research.Added Sergei Kalinin of ORNL’s Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences, “Ultimately, our goal is to build a network of materials scientists centered on the applications of SPM for energy problems and to promote rapid dissemination of theoretical knowledge, experimental protocols, and novel technique development in this rapidly growing area. This workshop is a major first step toward our goals.”
About the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences at Oak Ridge National Laboratory
March 18, 2010 - Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (AFM/SPM), in collaboration with LENS (Laboratory for Energy and Nano Science), MASDAR Institute of Science and Technology, was recently invited to showcase the MFP-3D™ AFM at the World Future Energy Summit (WFES) 2010 in Abu Dhabi. The WFES is the most important meeting of its kind for discussion of world future energy needs and solutions. The event was attended by government officials, industry leaders, policy makers, investors, activists, and scientists from more than 130 countries where they discussed the challenges of rising energy demands and viewed new technologies that will help to achieve a cleaner and more sustainable future.
The MFP-3D took center stage at the MASDAR Institute booth where attendees to the conference were able to see the AFM in action and discover the wide range of AFM applications for alternative/renewable energy applications. Asylum Research UK Applications Scientist, Dr. Mick Phillips, in charge of the AFM during the conference, commented: “The Atomic Force Microscope will be pivotal in the area of alternative/renewable energy research in the coming years, not only for characterising surface morphologies of these novel materials, but also to provide information as to the efficiency and viability of the materials via new electrical characterization techniques available on the MFP-3D.”
Added Dr. Matteo Chiesa, Head of LENS at the MASDAR Institute of Science and Technology, “We are proud to attend the World Future Energy Summit 2010 here in Abu Dhabi. The research we are carrying out at LENS is critical to the development of new materials that will meet the challenge of rising energy demands and allow for more efficient energy production. The MFP-3D AFM allows us to carry out some of the most advanced research necessary to assess the properties of the energy harvesting materials produced at LENS and our collaboration with Asylum Research is vital for pursuing our goals in the field.”
March 15, 2010 – Asylum Research, the technology leader in Scanning Probe and Atomic Force Microscopy (SPM/AFM), has announced eight new grants for early adopters to explore the capabilities and applications of the unique new Band Excitation (BE) technique. The R&D100 Award-winning BE method is a fast and sensitive technique that allows mapping of conservative interactions, nonlinearities, and energy dissipation of materials on the nanoscale, and shows great promise for understanding and mitigating energy losses in magnetic, electrical, and electromechanical processes and technologies.
Grants valued at up to $50,000 USD per grant have been awarded to:
“We at Asylum Research, along with BE inventors Stephen Jesse and Sergei Kalinin at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), are excited about the quality of the proposals submitted for our grant program. In particular, we are excited about the increase in application areas. BE was born to improve piezoresponse force microscopy, but has spread to very diverse areas from polymers, to biology and battery technology. We look forward to working closely with this excellent group of researchers to advance the BE technique and its applications,” said Roger Proksch, Asylum Research President.
For more information on the Band Excitation technique and grants, click here.
March 1, 2010 – Asylum Research, the technology leader in scanning probe/atomic force microscopy (AFM/SPM) announces its AFM in Biology Class to be held April 28-30 in Santa Barbara, California. The class is open to all Atomic Force Microscopy users that want to increase their knowledge of AFM in biology and life sciences. This world-renowned class, now in its 11th session, combines lecture with hands-on sessions for personal instruction and interaction with the Asylum technical staff.
“We cover all the essential AFM topics that biologists need and want to learn about — from sample preparation to advanced imaging and force measurements,” said Sophia Hohlbauch, Applications Scientist. “The breadth of AFM experience of our staff is unsurpassed -- both our President and CEO participate and class attendees have access to all of our scientific staff. The class is fun, with a good mix of lecture and equipment time.”
Commented former student Dr. Xiaohui (Frank) Zhang, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai, “It was such a wonderful experience at AR! Many thanks again for all the help and courtesy extended to me. I will for sure send my students to future Asylum Bio classes.”
Added Yael Dror, Oxford University “You all did a remarkable job in all areas! I am especially grateful for your sincere willingness to help each of us and the time and energy you spent with me to help, explain, guide and think together about my results. But above all you shared with us your love of the AFM, which couldn’t possibly be ignored, and gave us an insight into a very special company.”
The three day course is held twice a year. Topics include sample prep, force measurements, and imaging DNA, proteins, lipids and live cells. The Asylum Research MFP-3D™ AFM is used exclusively for the hands-on sessions. Class size is limited. A PDF of the registration form can be downloaded here.
February 18, 2010 – Asylum Research and Micra Nanotecnologia announced today that they have entered into a new distribution agreement that will enable Asylum to extend its global reach and promote its products in Latin America. Based in Mexico City, Micra Nanotecnologia, is the most experienced microscopy distributor in Latin America, with over two decades specializing in providing atomic force microscopes and other microscopy instrumentation. They will sell, install, and support Asylum’s complete line of scanning probe/atomic force microscopes, including the Cypher™ AFM and the MFP-3D™ Family of AFMs.
Carlos Segovia, President of Micra Nanotecnologia, commented, “We are excited about our partnership with Asylum Research, the technology leader for atomic force and scanning probe microscopy. Many leading nanoscience researchers are located in Latin America and we look forward to working with them supporting Asylum’s products. The Cypher AFM is the most exciting and highest resolution AFM on the market, and the MFP-3D is the most versatile AFM available, especially with its biological accessories, instrumented NanoIndenter capability, and the new Ztherm™ thermal analysis option.”
Added John Green, Asylum’s EVP for Sales, “Micra Nanotecnologia has had a long history of success in not only selling, but also effectively supporting microscopy instrumentation. They are an excellent partner for us and we anticipate a long and mutually beneficial relationship that will further increase our market share and user base across Latin America.”
January 19, 2010 – Asylum Research, the technology leader for atomic force and scanning probe microscopy (AFM/SPM), announced today that it set new records for both orders and shipments in its fourth quarter and for the 2009 calendar year. The fourth quarter results exceeded Asylum’s record 2009 third quarter, where orders were more than half again greater than the Company’s previous record quarter. Orders and shipments for the fourth quarter and year were a near equal combination of the recently introduced Cypher™ system, the world’s highest resolution AFM, the MFP-3D-BIO™ AFM, which mounts on an inverted optical microscope platform for the biosciences, and the versatile MFP-3D™ Stand Alone AFM for physical and materials science applications.
Commented Dr. Jason Cleveland, Asylum Research CEO, “Last year represents a tremendous achievement and I want to again thank everyone in our worldwide organization for their effort. Our order and shipment results are indicative of the quality and performance of our existing and new products – not to mention the legendary product and applications support our people provide. Instead of contenting ourselves with tweaking older products like other AFM companies, Asylum introduced the innovative new Cypher product line. Word continues to spread around the world that Asylum is the technology and support leader in scanning probe and atomic force microscopy.”
Added John Green, Executive VP of Sales, “During 2009, we saw other AFM companies cutting key staff and downsizing, while we continued to flourish with our superior technology, unmatched performance, ability to demonstrate research solutions, and strong applications support. We have attracted a growing number of former users of other AFMs with our continuous flow of new products and techniques providing our customers with leading research capabilities while rapidly expanding our market share and global presence. Many thanks to all of our users who spread the word and continue to drive us and our instruments to be the best.”