"It’s been an excellent start to the five-year plan for Enterprise and you can read more in this review. But such is the strength, depth and diversity of our activities that it can only reflect a small proportion of the outstanding work of the UCL community. Every member of UCL is to be congratulated for a tremendously successful year and with the promise of much, much more to come."
Prof Stephen Caddick
UCLB Agrees Exclusive Licence Deal With The Linde Group
22 November 2011
UCLB has agreed an exclusive licence with the world-leading gases and
engineering company The Linde Group for a process to separate and
purify single-wall nanotubes.
Single-wall carbon nanotubes
(SWNTs) offer excellent electronic and mechanical properties, making
them suitable for a vast range of potential applications ranging from
supercapacitors to touch-screen displays.
Current methods of
production result in SWNTs that are typically highly agglomerated and
contain a mixture of metallic and semiconducting species. However, to be
of most use in commercial applications the nanotubes need to be
individualised and purified. Current techniques used to deliver the
required level of purity and separation typically produce very low
yields (micrograms) and also often result in damage to the nanotubes.
research team from the London Centre for Nanotechnology (LCN)
consisting of Dr Chris Howard and Professor Neal Skipper (UCL) and
Professor Milo Shaffer and Dr Sian Fogden (Imperial College) has
developed a novel process to separate and purify SWNTs. This
sonication-free enrichment process relies on the selective reduction of
SWNTs in liquid ammonia. The SWNTs accept solvated electrons and
spontaneously de-bundle. The process is high-yielding, cost-effective
and commercially scalable, thus addressing a key gating factor in the
successful commercialisation of these unique materials.
licence agreement negotiated by UCLB grants Linde exclusive rights to a
portfolio of IP developed in the LCN relating to the carbon nanotube
separation and purification process.
Dr Tim Fishlock, Senior
Business Manager at UCLB, said: ‘This licence is the culmination of a
programme of collaborative work between the LCN and Linde over the past
few years. It’s a fantastic example of successful technology transfer,
taking a process developed in the university lab to full industrial
scale-up. Linde is the perfect commercialisation partner for this
technology and we wish them every success with their future plans.’
McFarlane, Head of Linde Nanomaterials, said: ‘We are excited about the
potential of purified and separated carbon nanotubes for applications
in microelectronics and other sectors. UCLB is an excellent technology
partner. The technology transfer between UCLB and Linde was seamless.
We have already scaled the technology at our research and development
centre in San Marcos, CA. Products based on the technology will be
The Linde Group
is a world-leading gases and engineering company with around 49,100
employees working in more than 100 countries worldwide. In the 2010
financial year, it achieved sales of 12.868 billion euro. The strategy
of The Linde Group is geared towards sustainable earnings-based growth
and focuses on the expansion of its international business with
forward-looking products and services. Linde acts responsibly towards
its shareholders, business partners, employees, society and the
environment – in every one of its business areas, regions and locations
across the globe. Linde is committed to technologies and products that
unite the goals of customer value and sustainable development.
For more information, see The Linde Group online at www.linde.com
The London Centre for Nanotechnology is a UK-based multidisciplinary enterprise operating at the forefront of science and technology. Our purpose is to solve global problems in information processing, healthcare, energy and environment through the application of nanoscience and nanotechnology. Founded in 2003, the LCN is a joint venture between University College London and Imperial College London and is based at the Bloomsbury and South Kensington sites.