Head of the Ministry of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov, in reporting to the State Duma during the "Government Hour", said that in 2015 the raw-material commodity exports were nearly 3% less than non-raw-material commodity exports in the total. "Russia is gradually moving away from oil dependence, the Minister said. It can also be seen in the increase in the volume of foreign supplies of Russian high-tech products, which grew in volume by 10.5%".
It is particularly important that even in the times of crisis and forced savings, support measures have not been cut, since it is thanks to them that innovative industries can continue to foster. Within the framework of the project "Molecular Imaging Sensing Technologies for the Personalised Medicine", with the support of the Ministry of Education and Science, we establish the biosensor production for personalised diagnosis and improved scanning probe microscope FemtoScan. The strategic goal of the Advanced Technologies Center is to set up fully domestic production of the measuring and analytical equipment for nanotechnology.
Starting from the 3D model developed in a computer programme, and then a prototype product, we are gradually heading towards launching the full-fledged production.
From electronic simulation to a real product
Back in the early 1990s during the development of the first models of microscopes, we used software packages for the design of both mechanical and electronic components; in other words, the electronic product model was always created in the beginning. Over the past 30 years the design instruments became more sophisticated as well as modelling and designing software packages were simultaneously upgraded and became more sophisticated. Now we use the SolidWorks packages in the design of the mechanical components. Students, postgraduates and young professionals are intensively trained in new design methods in the Nanotechnologies YICC of the Physics Department of the Lomonosov Moscow State University.
An important step in the creation of an innovative product is to formalize all of the developed design and process documents. Properly compiled documentation in itself already represents great value and makes it possible to set up high-tech production without too many refinements or improvements. With high-quality documentation, it is possible not only to achieve high production standards but also its multiplication. At this stage, there are certain difficulties that we faced when creating new models of a microscope and a biosensor. An essential problem was the formalisation of know-how in a format meeting the current regulations and state standards. If some GOST standards (for example, regulating the verification of probe microscopes) were written not so long ago, the whole range of state standards of the unified system of technological documentation (USTD) were developed mostly in the 1980s. Many GOSTs refer to the 1990s and contain rules of making documents without regard to the accomplishments of up-to-date computer programmes. According to Moore’s law, the key characteristics of computers improved twice every two years, in other words, several generations of computers had morally outdated since the time of creation of USTD standards.
We identified for ourselves a period of three years to create a modern high-tech production. Import substitution and the global crisis issues, outdated regulations and GOST state standards shape the reality in which we should work to achieve our planned goals and go ahead.
Innovations should be developed not only in production but also introduced in production standards. This will let us focus on the challenges of the present market economy as their range keeps growing.
We set the highest standards for new products. Thus, the improved FemtoScan X scanning probe microscope has a frame size of 100 × 100 µm2. The number of discretes (pixels) per frame may be 8 192 × 8 192, which is 64 megapixels. The achievable accuracy of positioning is 0.001 nm. The maximum scanning speed is 64 frames/sec. The viral particle detectability threshold on the touch surface at a field size of 10 × 10 µm is 10 units. At that, the time of a single measurement is no more than 10 minutes. The concentration of viruses in the fluid in the range from 104 to 108 virus/ml is measured with a relative error less than 20%.
The developed biosensor based on a cantilever biochip is a compact device that allows to register viral pathogens for not more than 30 minutes, and bacterial pathogens even faster, no more than 20 minutes.
Our objective is to quickly and efficiently go through the steps of creating an electronic model of the prototype by setting-up the new production. ■
We express our sincere gratitude to the Government of Moscow, Russian Foundation for basic research (project No.15-04-07678), the Ministry of science and education (project No. 02.G25.31.0135), the Fund of assistance to development of small forms of the enterprises in the scientific and technical sphere (the project No. 16315) for the efficient support of our work.