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Functional & Dynamic 3D Nano- MicroDevices by Direct Multi-Photon Lithography

Project description

Innovative microfabrication methods via two-photon 3D direct printing

Micro and nano electromechanical systems (MEMS/NEMS) are applied in a wide range of areas, from healthcare to the automotive sector, to consumer electronics. However, their development is a time-consuming and expensive process requiring complex and time-consuming fabrication methodologies, and thus their potential remains largely unexplored. Further, arbitrary complex 3D structures cannot be generated through standard micro-/nanofabrication techniques. The EU-funded 5D NanoPrinting project aims to address these restrictions by providing an innovative integrated technological platform based on two-photon 3D direct printing processes. The project will develop novel materials with tailored functional characteristics and pioneering processes for 3D nano-micro devices rapid prototyping that will represent an innovative technological advance in lithography.


Micro & Nano Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS/NEMS) have a huge impact on the market in different areas ranging from consumer to automotive. Nevertheless, their real potential is largely unexplored. This because their development is a long and very expensive process, which often requires long simulation steps. Moreover, arbitrary complex 3D structures cannot be even produced with standard micro/nano-fabrication techniques.
5D NanoPrinting project aims to overcome these limitations, providing an innovative integrated technological approach, based on two-photon 3D direct printing processes. Breakthrough processes for 3D Nano- MicroDevices (NEMS/MEMS) rapid prototyping will be developed, aspiring to become a novel gold standard for micro/nano-technologies, similarly to what 3D printing represented for manufacturing technologies in the last decade.
The approach will be based on new ad hoc-developed functional materials, polymerisable via two photon process, exploiting designed/tailored functional properties. In particular, to create complete NEMS/MEMS, a set of basic properties is required, including the possibility to have graded structural, patternable, conductive, and stimuli-responsive materials. Such complex functional materials, compatible with two photon lithographic process, have been not yet demonstrated; then, new suitable materials will be developed combining synthetic and nano-technological approaches. Expected innovation brought by the project will be not limited only to material science, but a great impact at levels of process and system is also expected.
Respect to traditional micro/nano-fabrication technologies, the proposed one will be specifically used for:
o Rapid prototyping, to test new principles and configurations before final device design
o Production of 3D complex or of customizable devices (parametric devices production, e.g. multi-axial nano-force sensors)
o Production of low numbers/high added value devices (e.g. cochlear implants).

Call for proposal


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Net EU contribution
€ 1 110 333,75
Via morego 30
16163 Genova

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Nord-Ovest Liguria Genova
Activity type
Research Organisations
Other funding
€ 0,00

Participants (7)