Microfabrication techniques have revolutionized the world however most are not simple, cheap, and rapid enough to allow for the creation of prototype devices on the bench top. Massively parallel scanning probe-based methods, such as polymer pen lithography (PPL), mark a step towards the realization of a “desktop fab,” enabling high-throughput, low cost nano- and micro-scale patterning of molecules and materials in an arbitrary fashion. Such strategies could allow researchers to synthesize, probe, and manipulate catalytic, electronic, and biological systems.
Chad Mirkin is the Director of the International Institute for Nanotechnology, and the Rathmann Professor of Chemistry, Chemical & Biological Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Materials Science & Engineering, and Medicine at Northwestern University. He is a world renown chemist and nanoscience expert, who has authored over 500 manuscripts and holds 220 patents worldwide. He is a member of PCAST (Obama) and the only chemist elected to all three US National Academies.