Nanoprinting Use Cases with FluidFM®

Print any pattern with sub-micrometer resolution.

Create grids & patterns

Deposit (bio)molecules and particles at defined locations with micrometer accuracy and with femtoliter volumes. A wide range of inks can be deposited in both air and liquid environment - from water to honey, solvents, acids, bases and more. For nanoscale and biomedicine research, bio-sensors and biomaterials.

FluidFM Nanoprinting - Spotting (Image courtesy of Nanosurf AG)

Image courtesy of Nanosurf AG.

Automatically varying back pressure and contact time in a grid-like pattern (3 dots per condition), spot sizes can be quickly optimized.

Nanosurf logo written in air with a solution containing approximately 50% glycerol; back pressure 200 mbar.

FluidFM Nanoprinting - Printed Nanosurf logo (Image courtesy of Nanosurf AG)

Image courtesy of Nanosurf AG.


Video courtesy of Bruker.

Creating droplet arrays from fL to nL

In this video the letters JPK are spotted onto a glass dish in air. These femtoliter sized water droplets quickly evaporate under ambient conditions. For longer lasting droplets a bit of glycerol can be added to the ink. However, often it is desired that only the proteins or nanoparticle payload stays on the sample, while the carrier solution evaporates.

Reproducibility of FluidFM printed spots

  • 3x4 spots of 30 nm gold nanoparticles are deposited with a FluidFM Probe

  • They are later scanned with the same probe

  • The reproducibility of all 12 spots is very high

  • The slope channel is extremely useful to calculate the spot area and volume

  • The 30 nm Au nano particles are individual or aggregated, and typically slightly to the edge of the spot

FluidFM Nanoprinting - Spotting (Image courtesy of Bruker)

Image courtesy of Bruker.

The height and slope channel of 30nm Au nanoparticles, printed with a FluidFM nanopipette.

Optical image of the deposited spots; 2x2 maps with 3x3 µm2, gap 1.5 µm.

FluidFM Nanoprinting - Spotting (Image courtesy of Bruker)

Image courtesy of Bruker.

FluidFM nanopipette

Print & scan with the same probe

AFM scans are also possible with the FluidFM nanopipette used for printing. Yet doubled features occur due to the tip geometry, which features corners around the opening. 2 of which at the contact level. These doubled feature effect can be avoided by tilting the AFM.

First structure: Motors A/B/C = 0 µm

Second structure: Motors A/B = 700 µm; C = 0 µm

FluidFM Nanoprinting - Printed lines without tilting AFM (Image courtesy of Bruker)


Visualization of a tilted AFM (Image courtesy of Bruker)
FluidFM Nanoprinting - Printed lines with tilting AFM (Image courtesy of Bruker)

Images courtesy of Bruker.

Would you like to discuss your experiment with our FluidFM experts?

FluidFM enables cutting-edge nanoprinting experiments - from spotting to printing grids and patterns.

Contact application scientists

Nanoprinting with FluidFM