Science and industrial products created in Micronova's cleanroom
Mika Koskenvuori, D.Sc. (Tech.), has served as the Director of Aalto Nanofab since 1 May 2014. He has his office at Micronova and is responsible for its cleanroom facilities.
Micronova is a joint microtechnology and nanotechnology research centre of Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and both scientific and product development work takes place in its cleanroom, which has a size of 2,600 square metres.
Aalto Nanofab shares responsibility for the cleanroom and its services and manages the cooperation between the users.
The cleanroom has been designated as a national research infrastructure, which means that it can also be used by other universities and research institutes.
“We operate on the basis of open access principle and I hope that we are able to expand our user base and in this way also help existing users to establish new partnerships.“
Turning science fiction into everyday products
Particularly in the field of nanotechnology, there have been a large number of products and commercial solutions during the past ten years. Many companies have also got started at Micronova.
“Nanotechnology has turned from pure science fiction into part of our daily lives. Nanotechnology solutions are incorporated in a large number of everyday products”, such as easy-clean coatings.
Today's electronics would not be possible without nanotechnology. Atomic-layer deposition (ALD), a method invented in Finland, allows the production of smaller electronic instruments and more effective processors.
Solar cells and LEDs are also being developed in the cleanroom. The aim in microfluidistics is to control small amounts of liquids so that laboratory analyses could be performed more accurately and quickly.
No industrial internet without sensors
Sensors and the process of sensing different matters and phenomena are important microtechnology and nanotechnology applications.
In fact, Koskenvuori is of the view that microtechnology and nanotechnology will play a major role when we are searching for ways to sense the world around us. Advances in smart systems and industrial internet are only possible if more accurate methods are developed for sensing, measurements and data collection. For this, we need sensors.
“We are currently working on a joint industrial internet project, which involves Aalto University, VTT and the Finnish sensor industry. We want to be the parties that develop and produce sensors.”
What about the future of Micronova and its cleanroom?
“The pace of development in the sector will definitely not slow down. I hope that we will be able to set our priorities in accordance with our users' wishes and I am convinced that nanofabrication and thin-film technologies will remain our focus areas. I also hope that we will be able to provide more support for micro-nano-bio cooperation.”