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Japan's leading diversified materials manufacturer Nitto Denko Corporation (Nitto Denko) achieved the world's first-ever precise, contamination-free analysis service in the extreme, conventionally impossible -150-500 degrees Celsius range by utilizing its cutting-edge innovation, a biomimic dry adhesive or glue ("Gecko Tape") that has the similar adhesive strength as natural gecko's foot. It is the first time Gecko Tape is put into practical use. Specifically, it is utilized for fixing specimens to analytical equipment.
This revolutionary-new analysis service is offered by Nitto Analytical Techno Center Co., Ltd. (NTC), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Nitto Denko. While Nitto Denko supplies Gecko Tape exclusively to NTC and NTC provides analysis services to both external and internal clients, the company will simultaneously seek for more possibilities of practical application in other business fields, targeting to identify some in 2015.
Environment controlled" analysis service using Gecko Tape
Since the development of Gecko Tape in 2010 (refer to the related press release dated January 23, 2010 at www.nitto.com/dpage/105.html), Nitto Denko has considered various possibilities of its practical use in a range of industries. Analytical equipment was one of the application possibilities Nitto Denko has been focusing on, in which Gecko Tape's advantages can be fully utilized.
Generally, electrical conductive tapes and metal pastes are commonly used for fixing a specimen to analytical equipment. These conventional fixation tools tend to malfunction under the extreme temperatures, such as under -30 or over 200 degrees Celsius. Due to such limitation, analysis services used to be available only in the certain temperature region only. In addition, said conventional tools often caused other problems, such as displacement of specimen during analysis because of their unstable fixation force prone to temperature changes, as well as contamination of specimen due to the solvent residue. Against such backdrop, there has always been a need for a better specimen fixation tool which allows more precise implementation of analysis.
Gecko Tape is the biomimic adhesive made of optimal carbon nanotube (CNT) array. Specifically, it takes a form of fiber-based structure with vertically aligned CNTs. The tape's good adhesion property remains unaffected under a range of temperature from -150 to 500 degrees Celsius. Gecko Tape can be used in the same way as an adhesive transfer tape* to serve as an ideal specimen fixation tool for analytical equipment. The tape's stable fixation force does not allow specimen to displace during the analysis. After the analysis, specimen can be released without any contaminations because Gecko Tape is 100% solvent-free. In such a way, Gecko Tape can offer solution to the problems of conventional specimen fixation tools.
(*) Adhesive transfer tape: Double-sided adhesive tape without a backing material.
Although Gecko tape performs is handled easily, it performs both advantage of adhesive tape and glue.
1) Unlike conventional conductive adhesive tapes as carbon tape, Gecko Tape does not melt or dissolve into the glass-liquid transition because of the temperature change. This property allows analysis services to be implemented in the -150-500 degrees Celsius range.
2) As Gecko Tape consists of carbon frameworks only, it is manufactured in a 100% solvent-free environment. In that Gecko Tape would not taint specimens after analysis.
3) Unlike common conductive adhesives as carbon paste and Ag paste which include organic ingredients, Gecko Tape's fixation force remains considerably stable; therefore it inhibits displacement or thermal drift of specimens during analysis.
Gecko Tape is applicable to the following analysis devices.
AFM: Atomic Force Microscope
TOF-SIMS: Time of Flight Secondary for Mass Spectrometry
SEM: scanning electron microscope
FE-SEM : field emission scanning electron microscopy
FIB: Focused Ion Beam
Headquartered in Osaka, Japan, Nitto Analytical Techno Center Co., Ltd. is a Nitto Denko group company specializing in technical analysis. With its state-of-the-art analytical technologies, the company has provided various analysis services such as elemental analysis, composition analysis and surface analysis to both external and internal clients since its foundation in May 1974. For more information, visit www.natc.co.jp (Japanese).
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