Objectives of the project
The project aims to study and develop new technologies for mechanical pattern transfer in the sub-100 nm regime, in order to replace conventional lithography in semiconductor mass production. Mechanical imprint into plastic polymers or printing with inks forming self-assembled monolayers will be the centre of interest. Given the wide range of possible applications of the novel technology, and the importance of cross-fertilisation between several subfields, we have defined four main objectives, encompassing the scope of the novel technology in electronics and quantum-electronics:
The present proposal is based on a combination of the in-depth knowledge of chemical research groups active in polymer chemistry and in self-assembled monolayers with the expertise, present in academic and industrial research, in fabrication and characterisation of electronic nanostructures. It combines ambitious targets in the field of ultra high resolution printing, with applications in ultra high density electronics and quantum-electronics.
To reach the targets, two different ways of mechanical pattern transfer will be developed and applied to test device fabrication:
The microcontact imprinting and inking techniques thus developed should allow for high throughput pattern transfer over a large area, and with a resolution down to 10 nm. Together with new alignment technologies this would allow for the replacement of conventional and e-beam lithography in future ULSI semiconductor processing.
For the future of the nanoelectronics industry the availability of a technology that allows for a mass-production of devices containing details in the range of 10 nm is of prime importance. Design rules in this range can be anticipated to hold sway around the year of 2010. Presently structures of these dimensions can only be fabricated using direct writing techniques, implying low throughput, and it is not probable that optical lithography can be upgraded to the appropriate resolution. Thus it is necessary to search for new ways of parallel pattern transfer for the desired structure size which can be found in printing and imprinting on the nanometer scale.
Prof. Dr. Laurens Molenkamp
2, Physikalisches Institut
D - 52056 Aachen
e-mail: (E-mail removed)
1 July 98
Duration: 36 months
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