Jan 26, 2016
X-ray sources see through commercial fabrication challenges
The use of field emission from nanomaterials in x-ray sources has attracted vast amounts of research and more than 1000 patents. However, commercial fabrication challenges and industrial inertia have led to far fewer efforts to commercialize the technology. In a Nanotechnology industry perspective, Matt Cole reports on the developments in fabrication technology that are making progress towards scaling up production. He also describes the advantages nanomaterials can offer as x-ray sources that may help motivate companies to replace current thermionic x-ray devices, and the commercial outlook for the field.
About the author
Matthew Cole is an Oppenheimer Research Fellow at the Centre for Advanced Photonics and Electronics, University of Cambridge, UK. He specializes in nanomaterial-based x-ray sources, including the heterogeneous integration of chemical vapour deposited aligned nanomaterials in nanoscale vacuum electronics devices. He co-founded the company Cambridge Xray Systems in 2014, where he is director alongside Jonathan Cameron, Bill Milne and Richard Parmee. In August 2015 he was awarded the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Sir George Macfarlane Medal for his work in nanoscale materials science. The medal is awarded for early-career brilliance in researchers, and recognized Cole’s research and industrial entrepreneurship, as well as his longstanding commitment to and higher-level engineering education.