Keithley Plays Key Role in New IEEE Test Standards for Carbon Nanotubes | Automation.com

Keithley Plays Key Role in New IEEE Test Standards for Carbon Nanotubes

Cleveland, Ohio – March 7, 2006 - Keithley Instruments, Inc. (NYSE:KEI), a leader in solutions for emerging measurement needs, announces that its Model 4200 Semiconductor Characterization System conforms to and supports the just-released IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, Inc.) standard for electrical testing of carbon nanotubes. The recently approved IEEE 1650TM-2005 standard, known as “Standard Methods for Measurement of Electrical Properties of Carbon Nanotubes,” gives the burgeoning nanotechnology industry one uniform and common set of recommended testing and data reporting procedures for evaluating the electrical properties of carbon nanotubes. The Model 4200 is a core measurement platform for engineers involved in nanotech materials research.

A carbon nanotube is a tubular structure that has become a major focus of nanomaterials research because it displays a variety of exciting properties for creating nanoscale, low power consumption electronic devices. A nanotube can even act as a biological or chemical sensing device in some applications, or as a carrier for individual atoms.

Keithley Instruments provided the standards committee with a variety of testing apparatus recommendations and measurement practices for making electrical measurements on carbon nanotubes in order to minimize and/or characterize the effect of measurement artifacts and other sources of measurement error encountered when making measurements on carbon nanotubes. The new testing standard should aid in the commercialization of nanotubes by providing uniformity between lab researchers and design engineers eager to put lab results into commercial use on the production line. Recommended measurement data to report as specified in the new standard include electrical resistivity, conductivity, carrier mobility, and non-linear behaviors.

A number of key international test and measurement and carbon nanotube leaders from industry, academia, and government organizations sat on the IEEE committee. Jonathan Tucker, the standard’s secretary and representative from Keithley says, “The new standard will greatly aid in accelerating the commercialization of nanoscale materials and electronic devices for the semiconductor industry, along with many other industries. Customers buying carbon nanotubes can now speak the same language as vendors when it comes to the electrical properties and quality of the products they’re purchasing.”

Nanotechnology is an important new area of research that promises significant advances in electronics, materials, biotechnology, alternative energy sources, and dozens of other applications. Keithley Instruments is a world leader in the creation of electrical measurement solutions for nanotechnology. Nanotechnology requires the measurement of very small currents and voltages, capabilities that Keithley has pioneered for 60 years.

With their unequalled performance, Keithley’s measurement tools enable nanotechnology researchers to observe phenomena that were impossible just a few years ago. Keithley is seen by many nanotechnologists as a key enabler of their work. These researchers depend on Keithley’s measurement expertise and knowledge to help them unlock the secrets at the nanoscale level and accelerate the jump from the nanotech research lab to commercial production.

About Keithley. With 60 years of measurement expertise, Keithley Instruments has become a world leader in advanced electrical test instruments and systems from DC to RF (radio frequency). Its products solve emerging measurement needs in production testing, process monitoring, product development, and research. The company’s customers are scientists and engineers in the worldwide electronics industry involved with advanced materials research, semiconductor device/wafer characterization and functional test, and the production of end products such as electronic assemblies or portable wireless devices. The value Keithley provides its customers is a combination of precision measurement technology and a rich understanding of their applications to improve the quality, throughput, and yield of their products.

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