Field Directed Sputter Sharpening (FDSS)

A proprietary process developed by Tiptek co-founders, FDSS sharpens the probe tip to atomic dimensions in a self-limiting fashion that does not require skilled operator intervention.  The resulting probe tips give high resolution over long periods of use.

An animation of the FDSS process. An electrical bias on the probe creates a field (shown in blue) at the tip apex. Energetic ions directed towards the tip are deflected by the field, which grows stronger as the tip gets sharper. This ion milling process results in an atomically sharp tip.

Today this innovation has led to in-house, U.S.-based manufacturing operations delivering solutions for four areas:

  •  Scanning probe microscopy
  •  Transfer of lamella formed by focused ion beams (FIB)
  •  Scanning electron microscope-based nano-probers used in semiconductor failure analysis, and
  •  Leading edge research in atomically precise manufacturing (APM)


Atomically Precise Manufacturing

Tiptek is at the forefront of APM research and looks to the future where atomic scale features  will be manufactured deterministically. Namely, each atom will be placed in a predetermined position creating atomic structures without flaws. These methods will be applicable to making any nanoscale device or object, such as microelectronics or devices for quantum computing.