Nanofilm develops and commercializes nanotechnology-enabled products using nanofilms. Nanofilm’s technology focus is on development of self-assembling nanofilms, nanocomposite thin films (films containing nanoscale materials), and surface preservation products. Products are used in precision optics, transportation glass, architectural glass, electronic displays/technical glass, glass and ceramic tableware, homecare and other markets. These coatings add new properties at the surface of substrates, including strength; water resistance; contaminant resistant; scratch and mar resistance, keep-clean/easy clean properties; energy control, electrical conductivity.
Q: In which Countries does your organization have a presence?
Nanofilm has product distribution in North America (US, Canada and Mexico), South America, Europe (England, France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, Sweden), Asia (Singapore, Japan, India), Australia and a several countries in Africa. All research, manufacturing and operations are handled at our facility in Valley View, Ohio, USA.
Q: How large is your organization?
Nanofilm currently has fifty employees.
Q: Please provide a short paragraph outlining the history of your organization.
Nanofilm was founded in 1985 by Ph.D. researcher Dr. Scott Rickert and businessman Don McClusky. Dr. Rickert was researching self-assembling thin films as part of his work as a professor at Case Western Reserve University, and the company began as a spin-off. The company’s initial expertise enabled the manipulation of coatings at the molecular level to enhance the durability, clarity, ease of use and performance of transparent materials. The company introduced its first commercial product in 1987 and through the following decades, Nanofilm has expanded and developed additional technology capabilities and launched dozens of products singly or with partners.
Q: Explain the role of nanotechnology in the development of your organization or department.
Nanofilm was founded on nanotechnology development. It is at the core of everything we do. Now, as we partner with other companies, we bring our nanofilm and commercialization expertise to the project.
Q: What key markets do you serve?
Nanofilm products are used in precision optics, transportation glass, architectural glass, electronic displays/technical glass, glass and ceramic tableware, homecare and other markets.
Q: How has nanotechnology impacted the products or services you provide?
Nanofilm is solely a nanotechnology company. Therefore, it impacts every product we make.
Q: Has your organization made any significant contributions to nanotechnology?
Nanofilm’s holds several patents in the field of nanocoatings applications. However, we believe our greatest contribution is in commercialized products that add new properties to existing products. We call it “nano-izing” everyday living. Our technology portfolio continues to have extensions in new products and markets.
Q: Briefly describe a current project involving nanotechnology, and what your anticipated outcome will be (new process, new product, etc.)
Nanofilm is currently working on two nanotechnology projects of note. The first is an energy-controlling film called Energy-Slayer™. It controls the passage of heat through architectural of glass, lowering energy use for heating and cooling. The film, in effect, turns a single-pane window into a double-pane window with only a nanometers-thick coating. The film is slated for an eventual move to the automotive market as an energy-saving product. Nanofilm is also currently working on a keep-clean/stay-clean protective coating for solar panels, which will help them be more efficient, reduce maintenance costs and extend product life.
Q: Where do you see nanotechnology applications leading in the future?
Nanotechnology will be ubiquitous in coming years, just as polymers, silicon chips and the Internet have become part of everyday life. It will facilitate enormous breakthroughs in some cases – medicine, energy, electronics. In others, it will simply continue to enhance product performance or reduce costs.
Q: What advice would you offer to someone who wanted to work at your organization in 3-5 years?
An understanding of chemistry and chemical engineering will be important to someone who wants to work as a researcher or product developer at Nanofilm in the next 3-5 years. An understanding of nanoscale properties will need to be layered into the education. In addition, a basic understanding of product manufacturing technologies will be helpful in commercialization. Marketing, operations and communications employees will need to have a strong understanding of technology in addition to their primary field.
Q: What industry do you think has been impacted the most by nanotechnology thus far? Why?
The electronics industry has been impacted the most by nanotechnology. Speed, size, performance are setting new benchmarks and allowing new products such as small computers and phones, etc. Plus it was an easy extension of the micro scale they were already working at.
Q: What industry do you think has the greatest future potential to be impacted by nanotechnology? Why?
The energy industry is due next. Because they need nano-answers to next generation of energy solutions.