LIG Nanowise raises £2.6m for 'accessible super-resolution imaging'

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LIG Nanowise, a developer of super-resolution microscope technology, has announced the completion of its seed funding round, raising £2.6m.

LIG Nanowise has produced an accessible super-resolution imaging technique for advanced materials, semiconductors, metal alloys, and more. Its specialist technology transforms light microscopes into ultra-high-resolution systems for the first time, through its microsphere lenses.  The company’s Nanopsis M microscope, allows for real-time, non-destructive imaging at super-resolution, allowing users to see objects smaller than 200nm – or the size of a large virus.

The financing, which was led by Hong Kong based venture capital investor Phoenix Bridge, alongside private investors, will go towards expanding the company’s manufacturing capability and international sales network, helping to deliver its Nanopsis M microscope to new prospects across industry and academia. A proportion of the money will also help to fund continued R&D efforts in multiple sectors, and further develop the organisation’s novel nano-patterning system, reinforcing its position as the industry leader in applied microsphere technologies and a key disruptor in the optics space.

With the investment, LIG Nanowise hopes to expand into other applications, such as research into semiconductor chips

In addition to being an accessible super-resolution option, the company's technique also negates the need for the traditional coating of a sample.  

LIG Nanowise’s technology has the potential to open up new vistas of research for super-materials such as graphene and semiconductors, providing a new, synergistic imaging technique to integrate into existing imaging protocols. Its microsphere lens technology has further far-reaching applications in areas such as industrial nanoprecision laser etching of surfaces, for applications such as bank note security and microelectronics.

Alex Sheppard, general manager of LIG Nanowise, commented: 'Since inception, we have made rapid progress in applying our patented, super-resolution microsphere lenses to practical problems facing industry and academia. The support of Phoenix Bridge and our other new investors will allow us to expand our international distribution network, deliver more system orders, and further increase the efficiency of our manufacturing pipeline,' he said.

'We will dedicate a proportion of this funding towards pursuing a number of additional applications for the future – we aim to make microsphere lenses a platform technology that can augment a wide spectrum of optical instrumentation, manufacturing equipment, and photonics devices.'