Element Six, the world leader in synthetic diamond supermaterials and member of The De Beers Group of Companies, today announced that the company has been granted more than 60 new patents on its single crystal diamond technology to-date in 2016. Single crystal synthetic diamond is produced by chemical vapor deposition (CVD) or high pressure, high temperature (HPHT) synthesis, and has remarkable properties including high thermal conductivity, low thermal expansion, exceptional hardness, wide spectral band and electrochemical behavior. Since establishing the synthesis process to produce high purity single crystal diamond materials in 2000, Element Six has rapidly advanced product development and innovation around the material for a wide variety of applications in optics, mechanical, electronic, sensing and quantum information processing.
"With more than a decade of careful research, we have developed tightly controlled manufacturing processes and growth conditions for producing single crystal diamond tailored for different applications, and follow equally stringent quality control procedures to yield highly consistent material with predictable properties and behavior," said Dr. Daniel Twitchen, head of CVD business development at Element Six. "Beyond internal studies and development, Element Six works closely with a number of industrial and academic partners to identify application challenges with existing single crystal diamond products, and develop solutions to push performance advancements in a wide range of industries."
Recognized among the top 10 companies globally for patent grants in any field of endeavor by the U.K. Intellectual Property Office, the company now holds more than 450 granted patents across 72 patent families relating to single crystal diamond technology in more than 20 countries around the world. The company's patent portfolio covers the entire commercial value chain from synthesis hardware to end applications of single crystal diamond including:
- Synthesis hardware and methodologies for manufacturing a wide array of single crystal CVD and HPHT diamond materials
- A wide range of single crystal diamond product materials in various grades, sizes, surface properties and tailored geometries, among other specifications
- Numerous post-synthesis processing methods including surface processing, thermal treatments, irradiation treatments and patterning methodologies
- Mounting configurations and device architectures comprising single crystal diamond components
- Device functionalities to utilize the engineered properties of the diamond components in a variety of applications
Industry Breakthroughs and Looking Ahead
Element Six's single crystal synthetic diamond has been at the forefront of many recent milestones and achievements in industries ranging from precision machining to lasers and optics. Element Six continues to address challenges in single crystal diamond applications through ongoing innovation and by improving upon existing capabilities. For example, researchers aim to increase the size of single crystal diamond windows for different applications, reduce costs and refine quality. As part of a project funded by the European Commission's Seventh Framework Programme to develop an ultrafast, high power thin-disk titanium sapphire laser, Element Six is developing larger area single crystal diamond with low absorption and birefringence with precisely defined geometries to improve laser performance.
"We are proud that with each product improvement, we expand Element Six's patent portfolio and innovation position within the market," said Twitchen. "Our intellectual property leadership has been instrumental in developing several key commercial partnerships. We are now seeking to further utilize our patent portfolio via licensing and partnerships with down-stream users of our synthetic diamond materials in order to enable them to access and better utilize our technology, and in turn, offer a competitive advantage over incumbent technologies in the marketplace."