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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: GR/S85689/01
Title: BASIC TECHNOLOGY: Nanorobotics - Technologies for Simultaneous Multidimensional Imaging & Manipulation of Nanoobjects
Principal Investigator: Inkson, Professor B
Other Investigators:
Moebus, Dr G Gibbs, Professor M Hatton, Professor PV
Cullis, Professor AG Rodenburg, Professor JM Hand, Professor RJ
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Indian Institute of Science Nanomagnetics Ltd National Physical Laboratory
QinetiQ
Department: Materials Science and Engineering
Organisation: University of Sheffield
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 01 January 2005 Ends: 30 June 2009 Value (£): 1,847,850
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Control Engineering Microsystems
Robotics & Autonomy
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Electronics
Related Grants:
GR/S85696/01 GR/S85702/01
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
Novel miniaturised piezo-controlled nanopositioning and nanomanipulation systems, with intelligent mechanical and electronic sensors and control, will be designed and constructed to form a multipurpose NANOLAB to be integrated into the specimen chambers of transmission electron microscopes. Special features of the new nanorobotics technologies will include(i) Integration of TEM nanopositioning with in-situ laser interferometry : for sub nm-accuracy measurements of displacements (enabling evaluation of force) with visual observation up to 1 million magnification(ii) 5-Degree-of-freedom actuation : Translation in all three cartesian directions xyz will enable a (e.g. tip-shaped) test object to be brought into contact with a (e.g. substrate surface) target object for dynamical mechanical (nanoindentation), chemical and electrical (including STM) testing at the contact point. Additionally rotation in one, possibly two directions, will enable in-situ 3D reconstruction of observed nanostructures by nanotomography; Novel nanotools will be developed for nanoscale manipulation of objects whilst imaging with the TEM.(iii) Intelligent nanorobot control : High-power vision based computing will allow (near) real-time tracking and automated control of the position and function of the nanorobot arm with respect to a possibly moving target by means of fast image processing algorithms. This feature qualifies our device as a nanorobot .We will test our nanorobotics NANOLAB in some of the most promising application areas, including manipulation of fullerenes, magnetic particles, biomaterials/scaffolds, semiconductor and MEMS devices
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Organisation Website: http://www.shef.ac.uk