How can we create nano-structures that are 10,000 times smaller than the diameter of a human hair? How can we “see” at the nano-scale? Through instruction and lab demonstrations, in this course you will obtain a rich understanding of the capabilities of nanotechnology tools, and how to use this equipment for nano-scale fabrication and characterization. The nanoscale is the next frontier of the Maker culture, where designs become reality. To become a Nanotechnology Maker pioneer, we will introduce you to the practical knowledge, skills, and tools that can turn your nanotechnology ideas into physical form and that enable you to image objects at the nano-scale.
This course has been developed by faculty and staff experts in nano-fabrication, electron beam microscopy, and nano-characterization through the Research Triangle Nanotechnology Network (RTNN). The RTNN offers training and use of the tools demonstrated in this course to schools and industry through the United States National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure program. The tools demonstrated in this course are available to the public through the RTNN.
What you will learn
Introduction to Nanotechnology
Welcome to Nanotechnology! In this module, you will learn some of the basics of nanofabrication and nanocharacterization techniques as well as specific applications of nanotechnology in commercial products. You’ll be able to explain why a cleanroom and vacuum environment are necessary for creating nanotechnology products. Finally, you will be able to explain how we use light, x-rays, and electron beams to characterize objects at the nanoscale. For more detailed learning objectives for each video, please see the first reading.
Nano Measurement and Characterization Tools: Scanning Electron Microscopy and Energy-Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy
After this module, you will be able to explain sample preparation and imaging techniques used in scanning electron microscopy. You will also be able to explain the benefits of environmental scanning electron microscopy. Furthermore, you will discover how energy-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy can be paired with scanning electron microscopy to gain elemental information about samples.
Nano Measurement and Characterization Tools: Transmission Electron Microscopy
In this module, we will look at transmission electron microscopy and cryo-transmission electron microscopy. You will learn to describe the basic function of the equipment as well as how samples are prepared and imaged using these techniques.
Nano Measurement and Characterization Tools: X-ray and Optical Characterization
In this module, we will see demonstrations of micro-computed tomography, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and optical spectroscopy. You will learn the basic function of the equipment and how samples are prepared and measured.