Zyvex Corporation was founded by Jim Von Ehr in 1997 to develop and commercialize atomically precise manufacturing (APM) technology to build products with atomic precision. When developed correctly, APM allows for the flexible manufacture of a wide variety of products, ranging from designer materials to supercomputers to advanced medical devices.
Prior to starting Zyvex Corporation, Jim’s background as a software entrepreneur led him to the realization that APM — creating “digital matter” — could allow products to be manufactured more efficiently, accurately and cost effectively than any existing technology.
Early on, Zyvex Corporation conducted fundamental research into APM, often building its own tools in the process. More recently, the company took that technology to market by developing commercial nanomaterial and nanomanipulation products.
In 2001, Zyvex Corporation received a significant research award from the National Institute of Standards and Technology's Advanced Technology Program (NIST ATP). Assemblers for Nanotechnology Applications and Manufacturing: Enabling the Nanotechnology Era (program ID 70NANB1H3021) was a five year, cost-shared joint program with Honeywell and several universities who supported work in microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) development, nanoprobing, nanomanipulation and other fundamental nanotechnologies. We thank the NIST ATP for making this work possible.
In 2003 and 2004, Zyvex Corporation received Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) awards from DARPA to develop the mini-SEM, shown here. Miniaturized Scanning Electron Microscope (program ID DAAH01-03-C-R217) and Manufacturing Assembly Technology for Producing Low-cost Mini SEMs (program ID W31P4Q-04-C-R289) supported our development of the electron optics portion of the work shown here.
In 2004, Zyvex Corporation also received another SBIR from the Department of Energy. MEMS Nanoprobe for Transmission Electron Microscope (program ID DE-FG 0204ER84130) focused on the development of a MEMS-based nanomanipulator for transmission electron microscopes (TEMs). Results from this program indirectly led to improvements in our MEMS fine positioning stages.
In April 2007, Zyvex Corporation reorganized itself into three independent companies to ensure continued product focus: Zyvex Performance Materials LLC, Zyvex Instruments LLC and Zyvex Labs LLC. Assets were distributed among the three companies and dedicated management was hired for the Materials and Instruments businesses.
Today, Zyvex Labs has two goals: 1) Develop APM and 2) Exploit our technology for microfabrication and 3D microassembly. Developed during Zyvex’s 5-year, $25M NIST ATP project, our MEMS technology is currently being used to fabricate miniature scientific instrumentation such as a mini scanning electron microscope and a mini atomic force microscope, as well as next-generation nanoprobing systems. These systems will be developed for larger market partners or spun off into standalone companies depending on the finished product. Zyvex Labs is also a founding partner in Nano-Retina, which is building an advanced prosthetic vision device.
Zyvex Labs funding comes from government R&D contracts, private investment and contract research.