BASF Chooses FEI System for Nanoparticle R&D

Selection of FEI DualBeam(TM) Demonstrates Growing Industrial Demand

and Investment in Nanotechnology Enabling Tools

Mar 06, 2006, 00:00 ET from FEI Company

    HILLSBORO, Ore., March 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- FEI Company
 (Nasdaq:   FEIC) today announced that BASF, the world's leading chemical
 company, has ordered one of FEI's top-of-the- line DualBeam systems, the
 Strata(TM) 400.  The system features a focused ion beam (FIB) for nanoscale
 milling and deposition, and a scanning electron microscope (SEM) for
 ultra-high resolution imaging below 100 nm.
     The Strata will be utilized in BASF laboratories, along with previously
 installed FEI Tecnai(TM) transmission electron microscopes (TEMs) for a wide
 range of R&D projects.  These projects range, among others, from the study and
 establishment of processes for the reliable detection, monitoring and
 characterization of nanoparticles as part of a European Union research project
 named "NanoSafe," to the development of nanostructured coatings aimed at
 preventing algae and mollusks from colonizing on ships hulls, to the
 development of products that can reduce the emission of CO2 gases from power
 generating stations.
     Underscoring BASF's commitment to nanotechnology R&D, Dr. Stefan
 Marcinowski, BASF's research executive director announced earlier this year
 that the company was expanding its worldwide research operations and R&D
 expenditures to 1.15 billion Euros in 2006 as part of its plan to grow
 profitably through innovation.  Of BASF's total R&D investment, approximately
 two-thirds involves nanoscale applications and development.
     "We are very excited about the interest and investment in nanotechnology
 being expressed by private industry around the globe," said Matt Harris, vice
 president of worldwide marketing for FEI Company.  "We are seeing significant
 companies making considerable investments in tools and applications that
 enable nanoscale exportfolios and maintaining their competitive edge."
     Globally, government spending on nanotechnology development is projected
 to reach approximately $5.0 billion (U.S.) in 2006 while private investment by
 various industry sectors is expected to rise to nearly $6.0 billion in the
 same period.
     About BASF
     BASF is the world's leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its
 portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products, agricultural
 products and fine chemicals to crude oil and natural gas. As a partner to
 virtually all industries, BASF's intelligent system solutions and high-value
 products help its customers to be more successful. BASF develops new
 technologies and uses them to open up additional market opportunities. It
 combines economic success with environmental protection and social
 responsibility, thus contributing to a better future. In 2005, BASF had
 approximately 81,000 employees and posted sales of more than euro
 42.7 billion. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt
 (BAS), London (BFA), New York (BF) and Zurich (AN). Further information on
 BASF is available on the Internet at
     About FEI
     FEI's Tools for Nanotech(TM), featuring focused ion- and electron-beam
 technologies, deliver 3D characterization, analysis and modification
 capabilities with resolution down to the sub-Angstrom level and provide
 innovative solutions for customers working in NanoResearch, NanoElectronics
 and NanoBiology.  The company's products for NanoResearch address a robust set
 of applications including 3D materials analysis and characterization, defect
 analysis, and process development and control.  With R&D centers in North
 America and Europe, and sales and service operations in more than 40 countries
 around the world, FEI is bringing the nanoscale within the grasp of leading
 researchers and manufacturers and helping to turn some of the biggest ideas of
 this century into reality.  More information can be found on the FEI website
 at: .
     Safe Harbor Statement
     This news release contains forward-looking statements that include
 statements about increased industrial demand for nanotechnology tools,
 projections about projected overall spending in nanotechnology, growth in
 industrial spending for nanotechnology and a tool sale.  Factors that could
 affect these forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to,
 changes in government or private-sector spending on nanotechnology, decreased
 demand for nanotechnology tools or cancellation of the order described. Please
 refer to our Form 10-K, Forms 10-Q, Forms 8-K and other filings with the U.S.
 Securities and Exchange Commission for additional information on these factors
 and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from
 the forward-looking statements. FEI assumes no duty to update forward-looking