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NuNano Installs and Automates TESCAN FESEM for High-Precision Quality Control

NuNano Ltd. and TESCAN ORSAY HOLDING a.s. announce the successful installation of a TESCAN Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope (FESEM) at NuNano’s Bristol facility, where it will be used for 100-percent automated quality control on atomic force microscope (AFM) probes with some of the tightest dimensional tolerances available today.

NuNano, a developer of high-end AFM probes and cantilever-based sensor devices, has customized the TESCAN FESEM software for this highly automated imaging requirement. Quality control at the nanoscale can be a very demanding and often impossible task. Such rigorous use of a FESEM is certainly uneconomical if reliant on manual operation.

In collaboration with the University of Bristol’s Department of Computer Science, we have created software algorithms that allow us to automate FESEM imaging and acquire high-resolution images of the tip apex for every probe on a wafer―that‘s 400 probes per wafer―to achieve 100-percent tip inspection. We can identify a tip and capture an image of the apex in as little as 30 seconds, which would be impossible to do manually. This level of automation and throughput also minimizes the chance of contamination of the tip.

Dr. James Vicary, Managing Director, NuNano

AFM is an important method for topography imaging and measuring material properties such as friction, electrical and magnetic forces, capacitance, and more. This high level of quality control enables NuNano to confidently provide its customers with AFM tips that offer extremely accurate imaging and the most reliable measurement data.

NuNano is an innovative start-up within an eco-center of research in Bristol and we are pleased they selected the TESCAN MIRA FESEM for use in their laboratory. Their collaboration with the University of Bristol’s machine learning team has enabled a level of automated FESEM imaging that is truly unique and quite impressive.

Ray Codd, General Manager, TESCAN-UK Ltd

NuNano will also use the TESCAN MIRA FESEM for R&D. The intuitive and user-friendly operating system with unrivaled reliability and uptime allow new users to get results very quickly so additional imaging capacity on the system will be made available to other members of Unit DX, an ecosystem of start-ups backed by the University of Bristol and Research England located within Bristol's Science Innovation Centre.

For more information about NuNano, visit

For more information about the TESCAN MIRA FESEM, click here.


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