General Nanotechnology

Company Background

General Nanotechnology (GN) develops hardware and software that provides advanced capabilities in imaging, nanomanipulation, nanofabrication, nano-spectro-photometry, near field optical probes below the aperture (50nm) limit, and diamond and other nanotools™ tips and parts.  GN is a California Limited Liability Company (LLC). Its principal operational location is in Berkeley, California. GN has partnered with the Lawrence Berkeley National Labs in a three year nanotools™ tips development program (1a).

Suppliers and Buyers

General Nanotechnology's software is used by major manufacturers of Atomic Force and Confocal Microscopy, and in wafer profiling equipment sold to the semi-conductor industry. GN has also developed advanced software capabilities for Light Microscopy, including Laser and Nipkow Disk Confocal imaging systems (1a).

GN is a principal supplier of proprietary diamond tools to RAVE LLC, the manufacturer of the first commercial SPM based nano-machining system. RAVE is also a licensee of GN's inventions in SPM nano-machining and control software (1a; 2b). General Nanotechnology is the exclusive software sales and support source for RAVE satellite workstations as the result of the license agreement between RAVE LLC and GN. Software licenses for RAVE mask repair system workstations are available from GN as single or multiple seat licenses, as well as site or company licenses.  GN offers advanced presentation and analytical software features for the workstations. On request, GN develops customer-specific modules in areas such as data management, special design rules and tip sharpening. With the RAVE tool typically located in the clean room, strategic use of satellite workstations can increase productivity and throughput while leveraging the investment in the RAVE system (2b).

Strategic Partnerships

General Nanotechnology's close association with advanced scientific facilities, including the University of California-Berkeley, NIST and the Lawrence Berkeley National Labs, provides them with unusual resources for developing practical solutions in nano-technology.  GN has successfully completed a number of projects resulting in products in the fields of optical confocal and scanning probe microscopy, image recognition and analysis, image acquisition 3D rendering, image enhancement and visualization, precise programmed control of microscope stages and nano-machining tools, materials coating and shaping with atomic precision and manufacture of shaped nanotools (2a).

GN has developed advanced software for mixed Confocal/AF imaging systems. In the Micro-Fab/Coating area, GN is engaged as an Associate of the Berkeley MicroFab laboratories and is developing diamond MEMS, including AFM tips, and nano-machining related special parts. GN worked with NIST to provide micro-machined force standards for the commercial AFM industry (1a).

Innovation and Technology

Nanotool™ V is a series of active cantilevers with diamond and conductive diamond tips and the first significant advance in basic SPM cantilever design in almost 20 years, the nanotool V permits new modes of nanomanipulation and nanomachining, for many applications including industrial and biotechnology industries, and extends the benefits of SPM to process applications where wear and other limitations closed the door to commercial applications. GN expects the nanotool V and its descendents to be enabling components for new nanotechnology companies and industries. The nanotool V debuts today at the Integrated Nano Systems show in Berkeley, with specific styles to be sampled to qualified researchers and companies (3).


  • GN's standard Diamond tips meet or exceed the sharpness of the best Silicon Tips without the problems of rapid tip erosion and oxidation
  • GN's Series V MEMS Cantilevers can provide multi-mode SPM operation without loss of sample position for mixed AFM/STM/Conductivity Probing and AFM Guided Nanomachining (AGN™) operations
  • Nanotool™ TEM is a set of nine 50 nanometer thick Silicon Nitride low stress films on a silicon frame for mounting samples for Transmission Electron Microscopy and other applications
  • GN is prepared to provide custom SPM and general MEMS solutions in Silicon and Diamond for customers (1b)
  • Nanotool™ V (3).

For more information, see the General Nanotechnology location page.


  1. General Nanotechnology (2012). Retrieved on October 27, 2012
    1. “About General Nanotechnology” from
    2. “Products” from
  2. General Nanotechnology (2003). Retrieved on October 27, 2012
    1. “OEM Partnerships” from
    2. “General Nanotechnology Announces Agreement With RAVE LLC” from
  3. Nanotechnology Now (2002, September 20).  “GN Introduces a New Paradigm for SPM, NanoManipulation, Nano electrical and chemical Probing and Nanomachining.” Retrieved on October 27, 2012 from