All started with a crazy idea

Torsten Jähnke, physicist, Frank Pelzer, MBA, and Jörn Kamps, physicist, became friends at high school. From there, they studied at the Humboldt University in Berlin sharing a student apartment. In 1997, they decided they wanted to have their own company rather than being employees of a large corporation.

Fascinated by all forms of nanotechnology through student jobs, Torsten Jähnke initiated the idea to develop SPMs into a business. In October 1999, the three friends, while still students, founded JPK Instruments AG using their owns funds.

They all successfully completed university with a diploma degree in 2000/2002. Also, in 2000, they persuaded another good friend, René Grünberg, to join the board. Just one year later at the 2001 NanoBioTec conference in Münster, they launched the NanoWizard®, the world's first dedicated BioAFM.

Between 2002 and 2006 the company's revenues increased tenfold and the roadmap for a powerful product line was developed.

In 2006, NanoWizard® II AFM product line came to market and the company was awarded with Deloitte's Fast 50 as Germany's fastest growing nanotechnology company in the same year.

In 2008 JPK launched the NanoTracker™ force-sensing optical tweezers platform followed by the CellHesion® 200 product line.

The NanoWizard® II AFM was followed by the NanoWizard®3 AFM in 2010 and the NanoWizard®4 AFM product family in 2015 with a huge variety of modes and features.

JPK will continue to develop with power and passion high-end nanoinstrumentation for modern applications in soft matter and life sciences to serve a growing community of users worldwide.

Since July 2018 JPK is part of the Bruker Nano Surfaces Division.


2020 Launch of the NanoRacer® High-Speed AFM for following molecular dynamics at unprecedented 50 frames per second
2019 Launch of the NanoWizard® Sense+ AFM
2019 Launch of the NanoWizard® 4 XP AFM
2019 Launch of the NanoWizard® ULTRA Speed 2 AFM
2018 JPK becomes part of the Bruker Nano Surfaces Division
2016 Launch of the OT-AFM Combi-System - the world’s first combined system to provide optical tweezers and atomic force microscopy
2015 Launch of the NanoWizard® 4 AFM
2015 JPK moves to new and expanded premises in Berlin
2014 US offices are opened in Carpinteria near Santa Barbara, Southern California
2014 The JPK China branch is founded in Shanghai
2013 Launch of the NanoWizard® ULTRA Speed AFM, a fast-scanning and super-resolution AFM enabling tracking of changes in samples in real time
2013 JPK launches the NanoTracker™ 2 force-sensing optical tweezers and optical trapping platform
2012 Launch of QI™ mode for imaging challenging samples
2011 Launch of the NanoWizard® 3 NanoOptics for advanced experiments combining AFM and optical spectroscopy
2011 JPK launches the NanoWizard® 3 NanoScience AFM, with maximum application versatility
2011 JPK is awarded from the KfW bank group for their future technology
2010 JPK launches the NanoWizard® 3 BioScience AFM, with HyperDrive™ for SuperResolution in liquid
2009 JPK celebrates 10th anniversary and donates a NanoWizard® AFM to the German Museum of Masterpieces of Technology and Science in Munich
2009 The JPK Japan branch is founded in Tokyo
2008 Two new products are launched: NanoTracker™ and CellHesion® 200
2008 First Symposium on "Optical Tweezers in Life Sciences"
2008 Launch of the NanoBioVIEWS™ web site and meetings series
2008 JPK Instruments Ltd. is founded in Cambridge, UK
2007 Deloitte's Fast 50 Award as Germany's fastest growing NanoTech company
2007 Complete takeover of nAmbition subsidiary and launch of the ForceRobot®
2006 100%- Acquision of lpi lightpowerinstruments GmbH
2006 Launch of the NanoWizard® II product line
2005 Imaging facility at Biozentrum of the Basel University is opened
2004 nAmbition GmbH is founded in Dresden
2004 JPK reaches profitability
2002 First installations of NanoWizard®
2002 First JPK Workshop "Scanning Probe Microscopy in Life Sciences"
2001 Launch of the NanoWizard® BioAFM
1999 JPK Instruments AG is founded in October