Carbon Design Innovations, Inc. Awarded $390,000 Grant from National Institutes of Health to Develop NewAtomic Force Microscopy (AFM) Probes

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National Institutes of Health Grant will be used to Develop Advanced CNT AFM Probes for biomaterials science and cellular imaging.

Carbon Design Innovations, Inc. (C|D|I) today announced that it has grant in the amount of $390,000 from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program. The grant will fund the development and commercializa-tion of Carbon Nanotube (CNT) Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) probes for bioimaging and investigations in cellular biology.

"CNT AFM probes offer very high-aspect ratio AFM imaging capabilities. The ability to understanding the detail of cell structures will enable advancements in protein and cell membrane analysis, bone cellular interface, drug delivery, and a CNT advanced sensor platform," said Vance Nau, CEO at C|D|I.

C|D|I has developed the nanofabrication methods and has the IP that will allow the company to design a high-aspect ratio CNT AFM probe for life sciences research. Nau continued, "With the NIH funding, we plan to build on our unique ability to make straight, strong and durable CNT AFM probes to develop probes for imaging biomaterials and cells in much greater detail than current Si, SiN or CNT probes can provide." C|D|I will collaborate with the University of California at Davis on the development of the probes.

CNT AFM probes from C|D|I are engineered from the micro to the nanoscale with precise dimensions, angles and material properties offering longer lifetime, higher resolution and greater flexibility than other commercially available probes.

About Carbon Design Innovations:

Carbon Design Innovations develops and manufactures carbon nanotube devices based on a patented, deterministic process methodology. The company has introduced a new class of CNT Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) probes that are straight, strong and extremely durable. The company's CNT AFM probes provide high-aspect ratio, high-resolution imaging capabilities that are ideal for detailed whole cell and materials AFM imaging and metrology.

In addition to the long lifetimes inherently provided by the CNT, patented manufacturing processes allow CDI to predictably straighten, align and securely attach the CNT to the AFM cantilever. The same probe can be used for multiple scans without tip deterioration or breakage, thus providing AFM researchers with reliable scan-to-scan results for the first time.

The company was founded by AFM and CNT industry veteran and company president, Ramsey M. Stevens in January, 2008. Vance Nau, Ph.D. joined the company as CEO in July 2008. Nau has over 25 years experience in management at scientific instrumentation companies and recently led AFM manufacturer Molecular Imaging for five years until its successful acquisition by Agilent Technologies.

More information about Carbon Design Innovations is available at, by calling +1 650.697.7070.

About This Grant:

"The project described is supported by Award Number R43GM087978 from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institute of General Medical Sciences or the National Institutes of Health."


Barbara Rice
Carbon Design Innovations, Inc.


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