Dr Mark Heaton Nanotechnologist

  • My work in nanotech as carried out at Imperial College and Omicron was to fabricate a MEMS (microelectromechanical systems) microturbine, using the integrated circuit fabrication methods of printing, masking and prototyping with final laser machining to contour the microturbine in 3D.

    MEMS is part of the ideal to scale down conventional machines so that they can work with the miniaturization seen in the IC industry which in following Moore’s Law in double downscaling every 18 months is now at 3 Teraflops per chip.

    My device overcame some dimensional scaling issues in downscaling mechanical  machines by using Axial airflow for low gas pressure sensitivity in a 3D microturbine that would be self-powering on top of being a sensor or micro energy generator. This turbo nanomachine is mainly suited to long term environmental monitoring and is still the only working one in the world.

    Nanotech is helping to bring about the next stage in engineering science particularly in renewables. The main characteristic for renewables is that nanotech offers the possibility of a device with very high surface area in relation to size. This is an aid to electricity energy storage and gas storage and would be of use to  my proposal for utilizing biogas.

 

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