Thursday, 6 December 2018

Story of the image: Reconstruction of the first Atomic Layer Epitaxy experiment

On December 6th, 2018, I have made a small donation to the world. I uploaded the image, which shows a reconstruction of the first Atomic Layer Epitaxy experiment (nowadays Atomic Layer Deposition) in Wikimedia Commons. (I also created a new gallery, Tuomo Suntola.)


The image is shared in Wikimedia Commons with the Creative Commons Attribute-Share Alike license (CC BY SA 4.0). This means that anyone in the world is free to use the image, also in commercial works, without the need to ask for further permission. The licence requires that one acknowledges the source (BY) and if edits are made, they are shared with a similar licence (SA). Ok ways in my view to acknowledge the source are: 

  1. Noting the authors & licence: Riikka Puurunen & Tuomo Suntola 2014 (CC BY-SA 4.0) 
  2. linking to the Wikimedia page https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Reconstruction_of_the_first_atomic_layer_epitaxy_experiment_by_Tuomo_Suntola.jpg

This image is quite special in my view and it was quite an effort to make it, so I am happy it is now shared for anyone's further use. (If someone is interested, I can tell another time, how it was made.) Had the image been used in the way it was first intended, it would not have been possible to share it in Wikimedia Commons. Luckily, things don't always go as planned. 

Here, I want to tell the story of this Suntola image, as an example to perhaps learn from.

Tuomo Suntola's main review on Atomic Layer Deposition (Epitaxy) now Open Access

Open Access for Dr. Tuomo Suntola's main review on atomic layer deposition has been kindly given by the Elsevier publisher (per request, for a year’s time?). As the review is from 1989, it is still entitled ”atomic layer epitaxy”. In the (evolving) list of publications on the history of ALD on the website of the Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA), this review is currently the oldest one listed.  

For the 1989 review, among other things, Suntola mapped the laboratories working with ALD known to him at that time. The list is in Table 1 and ordered according to the first publication. The list is very interesting to read through. I notice laboratories (in alphabetical order) from Austria, Canada, China, Finland, France, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, UK, USA. From Finland, the list gives (in the order of first publication) Lohja Oy; Tampere University of Technology; Helsinki University of Technology, Laboratory of Physics; Helsinki University of Technology, Department of Chemistry; Joensuu University. 

I hope many people interested the field of ALD will have a look at the article - and perhaps even cite it in future publications. 

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Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA) - in atmosphere of Openness, Respect, and Trust

Thursday, 29 November 2018

2018 Millennium Technology Prize ceremony in Youtube - Suntola and ALD

On November 29, 1974, the original patent (FIN 52359) on atomic layer epitaxy, nowadays known as atomic layer deposition (ALD), was filed by Tuomo Suntola with his colleague Jorma Antson. In 2018, Suntola and ALD technology were honoured with Millennium Technology Prize.

November 29, 2018, will be a honourable day to share a collection of records of the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize event, available in Youtube. Two videos are professional productions by Technology Academy Finland, others are amateur captures by myself. Enjoy :)




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Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA) - in atmosphere of Openness, Respect, and Trust

Sunday, 25 November 2018

Neste: "Curiosity and forward looking" describe innovative researcher Tuomo Suntola

Dr. Tuomo Suntola, the Finnish inventor of Atomic Layer Deposition and winner of the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize, worked at the Neste company for over a decade. Recently, Neste published a feature article on Suntola.  With permission, the article is republished in ALD History Blog. 

Original article: https://www.neste.com/people/curiosity-and-forward-looking-describe-innovative-researcher-tuomo-suntola. Related Twitter post: https://twitter.com/NesteGlobal/status/1042465901948350464
Related, 22.5.2018 (in Finnish): https://www.neste.com/fi/neste-onnittelee-vuoden-2018-millennium-teknologiapalkinnon-saajaa-tuomo-suntolaa

Finnish physicist, Dr. Tuomo Suntola, who made an impressive over ten year career at Neste and has won the highly appreciated Millennium Technology Prize this spring, is described as an innovative researcher with a genuine curiosity and passion for his work.

Dr. Suntola worked from 1987 to 1998 as a Managing Director of Microchemistry Ltd, subsidiary of Neste and later Fortum. Lars Peter Lindfors, Neste’s Senior Vice President of Technology had the pleasure of working as a researcher at Neste in the beginning of 1990’s in a cooperation with Suntola and other talented researchers of Microchemistry. The subject of cooperation, as part of the Lindfors dissertation, was the production of catalysts with ALD technology, Suntola’s award winning innovation.

Saturday, 24 November 2018

ECS meeting invited ALD history talk: slides and proceedings

In October 2018, I had the honor to give an invited talk at the Electrochemical Society (ECS) fall meeting, organized in Cancun, Mexico (AiMES2018). ECS has had an ALD session since early 2000s. For me, this was the first time to attend the event: I got a very nice impression of the ALD session specifically and on this massive meeting in general.

The talk was called "Learnings from an Open Science Effort: Virtual Project on the History of ALD". Abstract is as follows:
"This work summarizes learnings from an Open Science effort “Virtual project on the History of ALD” (VPHA), started in 2013 to clarify the early history of atomic layer deposition (ALD). ALD is a multi-tool of nanotechnology and has been e.g. enabler of the continuation of Moore’s law of transistor scaling. ALD has been developed historically through two independent routes: atomic layer epitaxy (ALE) and molecular layering (ML). Especially the details on ML have remained little known to a broader audience. In this contribution, learnings in VPHA are seen from the viewpoint of its voluntary coordinator (the author self) related to historical details of ALD as well as from an organizational viewpoint and some other viewpoints. Selected details related to ALD’s history not fully accurately described in three earlier review articles are pointed out. The work made in VPHA has resulted in journal articles, presentations and an exhibition, and VPHA has in part provided the foundation for granting the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize to Dr. Tuomo Suntola. At the time of writing this contribution, in July 2018, VPHA is still on-going, and more volunteers are welcome to join the effort."

The slides are available through ECSarXiv: https://ecsarxiv.org/u6vw7/ (DOI: 10.1149/osf.io/u6vw7).

Sunday, 11 November 2018

Virtual issue of Chemistry of Materials in Honor of Professor Markku Leskelä

A "virtual issue" - an electronic collection of articles centered on a topic - was published by Chemistry of Materials in July 2018 to celebrate the influential career of professor Markku Leskelä at the verge of his retirement. The virtual issue was published just in time for the ALD 2018 conference, so the conference could celebrate at the same time the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize for Dr. Tuomo Suntola as well as the virtual issue of Prof Leskelä. 

The full virtual issue can be accessed through: https://pubs.acs.org/page/vi/MarkkuLeskela.html. It contains scientific articles published by Leskelä, as well as scientific articles influenced by Leskelä's works, in different journals by ACS. 

A related editorial by his close colleague and first student, Prof. Mikko Ritala and by Chem. Mater. editors is accessible at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.chemmater.8b02742, entitled "In Honor of Professor Markku Leskelä." 

Saturday, 28 July 2018

VPHA website updated with ECS Transactions article info

The VPHA website, http://vph-ald.com, has been on July 28, 2018 updated with info of the ECS Transactions article in press:
  • Proceedings: R. L. Puurunen, "Learnings from an Open Science Effort: Virtual Project on the History of ALD", ECS Transactions, in press (2018). Open access preprint, DOI: 10.1149/osf.io/exyv3.

As the international ALD 2018 conference in Korea starts on July 29, 2018, it is good to spread the message that VPHA is still on-going and more volunteers are welcome to join. As communicated in the VPHA status update in May 2018, the plan is to produce jointly one more brief concluding review article from within VPHA. (Previous publications are listed in the Publication Plan here; the review now in question belongs to Item 10.) The articles produced earlier from within VPHA have become impactful within the field of ALD what comes to citations and other attention (see e.g. Altmetrics for the "ALE essay"). The last review is expected to be impactful, too.

Sunday, 22 July 2018

VPHA status update 22.7.2018 - ECS Transactions info

The message below was sent to 76 VPHA contributors and 56 prospective contributors.

From: Puurunen Riikka
Sent: 22 July 2018 22:31
To: info @ vph-ald.com
Cc: Puurunen Riikka; jonas.sundqvist@ <>
Subject: VPHA status update 22.7.2018 - ECS Transactions info



Dear current and prospective VPHA contributors,

This VPHA update shares information on an ECS Transactions article related to an invited talk at the ECS fall symposium. The previous VPHA status update was sent on May 28, 2018. All VPHA status updates published in the ALD History Blog can be viewed in this link.

Best regards,
Riikka Puurunen, voluntary VPHA coordinator

Sunday, 1 July 2018

The question that started the Virtual Project on the History of ALD

I noticed that the discussion chain, which initiated the Virtual Project on the History of ALD, is still accessible in LinkedIn. Here, I copy the first post, which was a question by myself. Markedly, there in total 26 items of discussion at the moment (and one "like"). To my knowledge, the post was written on May 6, 2013. Screen capture of the post, full copy of the text below. (I was not a professor at Aalto University then, but a senior researcher at VTT.) Link to the discussion chain, which is still open: https://www.linkedin.com/groups/1885076/1885076-238399494.

Monday, 28 May 2018

VPHA status update 28.5.2018 - 2018 Millennium Technology Prize and VPHA's next steps

The message below was sent to 76 VPHA contributors and 54 prospective contributors.  
--- 
From: Puurunen Riikka
Sent: 28. toukokuuta 2018 16:31
To: info vph-ald.com
Cc: Puurunen Riikka <>; Jonas Sundqvist <>
Subject: VPHA status update 28.5.2018 - 2018 Millennium Technology Prize and VPHA's next steps

Dear VPHA contributors and prospective contributors,

This is the first status update of the Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA) in year 2018 - earlier updates can be found in this link.

This update shares information on the following topics:

* The 2018 Millennium Technology Prize to Dr. Tuomo Suntola
* Words of thank to the community by Dr. Tuomo Suntola
* Puurunen’s invited talk at the ECS fall 2018 ALD symposium
* VPHA’s next step

With best regards,
Riikka Puurunen, VPHA’s voluntary coordinator

Sunday, 27 May 2018

Dr. Suntola thanks the community for support and shares honor for the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize

Upon request, I transmit two messages from Dr. Tuomo Suntola, the awardee of the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize, to the ALD community.


First, Dr. Tuomo Suntola, who has had a busy week after receiving the prize on May 22, 2018, would like to thank the community for the broad support for the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize. This support, seen as forty supporting letters accompanying the nomination letter, has evidently had a significant role in strengthening the nomination. It was the pleasure and honour of the undersigned to spread information of the coming nomination at conferences in 2017 and to collect the supporting letters from esteemed scientists and technologists from various organizations around the world. In the words of Dr. Suntola in his speech at the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize ceremony:

” …  also, my sincere thanks go to the materials research and semiconductor processing community for the broad support behind the nomination.”

Second, Dr. Tuomo Suntola wishes that the prize will be experienced as credit for all actors in the field. Again, from his speech at the ceremony:

” … In the long run, I like to share the honor of the Millennium prize with all my colleagues having worked with me for the technology, the companies hosting and financing the development, and the co-operating universities and funding organizations supported the work. I like to thank all parties for the confidence and patience in getting through times when the goal looked distant. Finally, my special thanks go to the thousands of scientists and engineers who, finally, have made the technology a global success and an important part of our everyday life.”

It is an honour for myself and for the ALD History Blog as publication platform to transmit these messages from Dr. Tuomo Suntola to the community.

Espoo, Finland, May 27, 2018,
Riikka Puurunen
Associate Professor, Catalysis Science and Technology, Aalto University
Voluntary coordinator of the Virtual Project on the History of ALD

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Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA) - in atmosphere of Openness, Respect, and Trust

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Congratulations Dr. Tuomo Suntola for the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize!

Dr. Tuomo Suntola has been awarded the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize for the Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) innovation. Warmest congratulations!   


In the view of the undersigned, Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA, http://vph-ald.com/) has been crucial for realizing the prize this year. Drafting the nomination letter was a natural continuation of the VPHA ALD history activities. The scientific publications created in VPHA describe the history of ALD in a balanced way and thus directly supported the prize. Wikipedia updates have been important in spreading the information beyond the immediate scientific ALD community. Thank you to all who have been involved in these voluntary works and for the numerous supporting letters provided!
  • List of three scientific articles on the history of ALD, created within ALD, below.
  • A longer list of ALD-history-related publications is available at http://vph-ald.com/ALD-history-publications.html
  • Previous ALD History Blog posts related to the 2018 Millennium Technology Prize here.
  • Some photos of the events on May 22 and 23 at the end of the post. 

Dr. Tuomo Suntola deserves the prize extremely well for his breakthrough pioneering accomplishments in ALD technology. Suntola has always supported the ALD history activities by the undersigned; likewise, it has been great to feel the widespread support in the international ALD community for the prize to Suntola. I hope that the prize can still further unite the ALD community and spread understanding of this enabling "hidden technology" to the general public.

Congratulations Tuomo Suntola; congratulations the rest of us in the ALD community; let us enjoy this moment!

Friday, 22 December 2017

Season's greetings from Aalto University

Greetings were sent to all VPHA contributors (76) and prospective contributors (53). More people are still welcome to join VPHA.



---
Dear VPHA contributors and prospective contributors,

With this Aalto University electronic card, I wish you all happy holiday season and a prosperous 2018.

I have been slower in communicating in the last months about VPHA progress than I thought - this is because of the many duties and things to learn as a new professor and a group leader. I am still aiming for a final review article to be made from within VPHA. For this, some reading is probably still needed, updating information on the theses & conferences, sorting out data to create final tables. Also, we should discuss and decide how to archive the ALD-history-evolving-file after VPHA has ended. Expect more communication on this in the first months of 2018.

Best regards,
Riikka Puurunen, VPHA coordinator

Aalto University, professor, Catalysis Science and Technology


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Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA) - in atmosphere of Openness, Respect, and Trust

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Story of Atomic Layer Deposition by Sven Lindfors, from Picosun newsletter December 2008

”I borrowed a bottle of hydrogen sulfide and, suddenly, there was a glowing golden growth covering the glass tube. We´d cracked it: this was the theory of advanced Atomic Layer Epitaxy taking physical form in front of my eyes.” 

"Story of Atomic Layer Deposition by Sven Lindfors, Chief Technology Officer and a Member of the Board of Directors of Picosun," initially published in the Picosun newsletter December 2008. The Picosun newsletter is no longer online and the story is republished in the ALD History Blog with the kind permission by Picosun Oy. Earlier related posts were "Sven Lindfors (1945-2017) in memoriam" and "Remembering Sven Lindfors - Svenin muistolle, by Tuomo Suntola". 

Screen capture from Picosun News, December 2008. With permission by Picosun. 

“We had numerous unsuccessful test runs behind us. Dr Tuomo Suntola knew that in order to proceed, we needed to advance from using pure chemical elements to an exchange reaction based on carrier gases and sulphides,” says Sven Lindfors, at the time working as a key technician for Dr Suntola’s team.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Awards granted in relation with ALD - help to complete the list?

As mentioned in an earlier post, I am in the process of writing a Millennium Technology Prize nomination document for ALD and Tuomo Suntola. Supporting letters for the nomination are welcome from all over the world. At the time of writing this text, I have received five such letters. I hope that altogether we can collect  20-30 supporting letters - everyone's contribution is welcome.

About the nomination. It came to my mind that it might be worth listing to the nomination document the awards that have been granted worldwide to ALD so far. Below is my current list and some questions related to two possible additions.

Do you have another award in mind that someone has received anywhere in the world, from some recognized organization, which could be added to the list? If you have suggestions (need to be backed up by a document available in the internet), please leave a comment or contact me at riikka.puurunen@delete.this.aalto.fi.

Awards so far which I am aware of - probably an incomplete list:


The two award where I am thinking if they can go to the list are the following. Opinions welcome.

Friday, 7 July 2017

Prof Steven George receives major AVS award for ALD

Professor Steven George from University of Colorado Boulder receives the John A. Thornton memorial award and lecture 2017 by AVS for "for seminal contributions to understanding, development and applications of atomic layer deposition". More on the award: https://www.avs.org/Awards-Recognition/Professional-Awards/John-A-Thornton-Memorial-Award-Lecture.

Steven George is one of those people who have dedicated a major part of their career for developing ALD. In addition to having led a world-leading university research group on ALD for about two decades, he is also a co-founder of ALD Nanosolutions (ALD History Blog posts here) and has authored for example the world's most cited review article on ALD in Chemical Reviews, 2010 (mentioned also in the ALD History Blog). In 2013, Steven George received the ALD Innovation award at the international AVS ALD conference (more on the 2016 award here).

Steven George will deliver the John A Thornton memorial lecture entitled " Atomic Layer Deposition: Highlights from the Last 25 Years" at the AVS 64 meeting on October 31, 2017. More details available via https://www.avs.org/Symposium/Technical-Program/Divisions-Groups --> Program/Scheduler.

Congratulations to Prof. George!

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Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA) - in atmosphere of Openness, Respect, and Trust

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Remembering Sven Lindfors - Svenin muistolle, by Tuomo Suntola

This post continues upon a previous post, Sven Lindfors (1945-2017) in memoriam, by sharing the words of Tuomo Suntola at the funeral of Sven Lindfors on June 2, 2017. The words (in Finnish) are published with permission by Tuomo Suntola.



Sven Lindforsille 2.6.2017


- Osanottoni Svenin omaisille ja läheisille

Sunday, 4 June 2017

VPHA status update 4.6.2017 - Millennium Prize, Lindfors, HERALD Riga, VPHA's future

The status update copied below was sent to 76 current and 47 prospective VPHA contributors. 


From: Puurunen Riikka
Sent: 04 June 2017 09:10
Subject: VPHA status update June 2017 - Millennium Prize support, Lindfors in memoriam, HERALD Riga, future of VPHA

Dear current and prospective VPHA contributors,

This is the second update of the Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA) in year 2017. The previous VPHA status update was set on March 22, 2017, link here.

This update shares information on the following topics:

  1. Millennium Technology Prize 2018 nomination - supporting letters welcome
  2. Mr. Sven Lindfors in memoriam
  3. Other posts
  4. Future activities in VPHA

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Where were you when I asked that question?

This post continues on an earlier post describing the ALD history activities before VPHA.

Triggered by events in the NetherlandsFinland and latest Latvia and the way that the history of ALD has been presented in them, I am finally writing a post which has been forming in the back of my mind for several months.

During the years, it has happened to me repeatedly that people start telling me their exact location "when you asked that question". They always refer to the ALD 2004 conference, "A joint American Vacuum Society ALD and Baltic ALD conference Celebrating 30 years of ALD", Helsinki, Finland, August 16-18, 2014. The conference pages were until quite recently still available at the address http://www.helsinki.fi/ALD2004/; now they seem to have disappeared. It should still be possible to obtain the abstract book here.

As the title says, the conference was celebrating thirty years from the invention of ALD in Finland in 2004. Dr. Tuomo Suntola was deservedly one of the invited speakers. His presentation is still available through his webpage, a link can be found also in the VPHA list of ALD history publications.

When the conference preparations started, I was a postdoctoral fellow at IMEC, Belgium. I of course wanted to participate in the conference, now that this big international event would arrive in Finland. I submitted several abstracts of my works (and got one talk + posters).

At IMEC, I had started to look into the history of ALD, as described in detail earlier here. I was well aware that ALD has not only been invented in Finland but also in USSR, and that the USSR work pre-dates that made in Finland. Seeing the title of the conference, "Celebrating 30 years of ALD", I was not quite sure what to think of it. My feeling was that I cannot be the only one who knows that this title is not correct. Don't they know, or don't they want to know?

Supporting Letters for Millennium Technology Prize 2018 nomination

updated 21.7.2017
Supporting Letters are sought for the Millennium Technology Prize 2018 nomination for ALD and Tuomo Suntola, especially to help describe the societal impact of ALD.

Since the day I promised to nominate atomic layer deposition and Tuomo Suntola for Millennium Technology Prize 2018, I have received positive feedback from many people and organizations, as well as questions on how one can support the nomination. Can Supporting Letters be prepared by individual persons or organizations? How does one prepare a Supporting Letter?

I try to answer all questions in this ALD History Blog post.

Scheme showing how a Supporting Letter could look like.