Fabrication of Silicon Nanobelts and Nanopillars by Soft Lithography for Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Photonic Surfaces.
ABSTRACT: Soft lithography allows for the simple and low-cost fabrication of nanopatterns with different shapes and sizes over large areas. However, the resolution and the aspect ratio of the nanostructures fabricated by soft lithography are limited by the depth and the physical properties of the stamp. In this work, silicon nanobelts and nanostructures were achieved by combining soft nanolithography patterning with optimized reactive ion etching (RIE) in silicon. Using polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) nanopatterned layers with thicknesses ranging between 14 and 50 nm, we obtained silicon nanobelts in areas of square centimeters with aspect ratios up to ~1.6 and linewidths of 225 nm. The soft lithographic process was assisted by a thin film of SiOx (less than 15 nm) used as a hard mask and RIE. This simple patterning method was also used to fabricate 2D nanostructures (nanopillars) with aspect ratios of ~2.7 and diameters of ~200 nm. We demonstrate that large areas patterned with silicon nanobelts exhibit a high reflectivity peak in the ultraviolet C (UVC) spectral region (280 nm) where some aminoacids and peptides have a strong absorption. We also demonstrated how to tailor the aspect ratio and the wettability of these photonic surfaces (contact angles ranging from 8.1 to 96.2°) by changing the RIE power applied during the fabrication process.
Project description:Crystalline silicon photonic crystal slabs are widely used in various photonics applications. So far, the commercial success of such structures is still limited owing to the lack of cost-effective fabrication processes enabling large nanopatterned areas (≫ 1 cm(2)). We present a simple method for producing crystalline silicon nanohole arrays of up to 5 × 5 cm(2) size with lattice pitches between 600 and 1000 nm on glass and flexible plastic substrates. Exclusively up-scalable, fast fabrication processes are applied such as nanoimprint-lithography and silicon evaporation. The broadband light trapping efficiency of the arrays is among the best values reported for large-area experimental crystalline silicon nanostructures. Further, measured photonic crystal resonance modes are in good accordance with light scattering simulations predicting strong near-field intensity enhancements greater than 500. Hence, the large-area silicon nanohole arrays might become a promising platform for ultrathin solar cells on lightweight substrates, high-sensitive optical biosensors, and nonlinear optics.
Project description:We demonstrated fabrication of a parabola shaped Si nanostructures of various periods by combined approach of nanosphere lithography and a single step CF4/O2 reactive ion etch (RIE) process. Silica nanosphere monolayers in a hexagonal array were well deposited by a solvent controlled spin coating technique based on binary organic solvents. We showed numerically that a parabolic Si nanostructure of an optimal period among various-shaped nanostructures overcoated with a dielectric layer of a 70?nm thickness provide the most effective antireflection. As the simulation results as a design guide, we fabricated the parabolic Si nanostructures of a 520?nm period and a 300?nm height exhibiting the lowest weighted reflectance of 2.75%. With incorporation of such parabolic Si nanostructures, a damage removal process for 20?sec and SiNx antireflection coating of a 70?nm thickness, the efficiency of solar cells increased to 17.2% while that of the planar cells without the nanostructures exhibited 16.2%. The efficiency enhancement of the cell with the Si nanostructures was attributed to the improved photocurrents arising from the broad spectral antireflection which was confirmed by the external quantum efficiency (EQE) measurements.
Project description:A major technical hurdle in microfluidics is the difficulty in achieving high fidelity lithographic patterning on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). Here, we report a simple yet highly precise and repeatable PDMS surface micromachining method using direct photolithography followed by reactive ion etching (RIE). Our method to achieve surface patterning of PDMS applied an O(2) plasma treatment to PDMS to activate its surface to overcome the challenge of poor photoresist adhesion on PDMS for photolithography. Our photolithographic PDMS surface micromachining technique is compatible with conventional soft lithography techniques and other silicon-based surface and bulk micromachining methods. To illustrate the general application of our method, we demonstrated fabrication of large microfiltration membranes and free-standing beam structures in PDMS.
Project description:A major challenge in nanofabrication is to pattern unconventional substrates that cannot be processed for a variety of reasons, such as incompatibility with spin coating, electron beam lithography, optical lithography, or wet chemical steps. Here, we present a versatile nanofabrication method based on re-usable silicon membrane hard masks, patterned using standard lithography and mature silicon processing technology. These masks, transferred precisely onto targeted regions, can be in the millimetre scale. They allow for fabrication on a wide range of substrates, including rough, soft, and non-conductive materials, enabling feature linewidths down to 10 nm. Plasma etching, lift-off, and ion implantation are realized without the need for scanning electron/ion beam processing, UV exposure, or wet etching on target substrates.
Project description:The creation of nanostructures on polycrystalline silicon wafer surface to reduce the solar reflection can enhance the solar absorption and thus increase the solar-electricity conversion efficiency of solar cells. The self-masking reactive ion etching (RIE) was studied to directly fabricate nanostructures on silicon surface without using a masking process for antireflection purpose. Reactive gases comprising chlorine (Cl2), sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), and oxygen (O2) were activated by radio-frequency plasma in an RIE system at a typical pressure of 120-130 mTorr to fabricate the nanoscale pyramids. Poly-Si wafers were etched directly without masking for 6-10 min to create surface nanostructures by varying the compositions of SF6, Cl2, and O2 gas mixtures in the etching process. The wafers were then treated with acid (KOH:H2O = 1:1) for 1 min to remove the damage layer (100 nm) induced by dry etching. The damage layer significantly reduced the solar cell efficiencies by affecting the electrical properties of the surface layer. The light reflectivity from the surface after acid treatment could be significantly reduced to <10% for the wavelengths between 500 and 900 nm. The effects of RIE and surface treatment conditions on the surface nanostructures and the optical performance as well as the efficiencies of solar cells will be presented and discussed. The authors have successfully fabricated large-area (156 × 156 mm(2)) subwavelength antireflection structure on poly-Si substrates, which could improve the solar cell efficiency reproducibly up to 16.27%, higher than 15.56% using wet etching.
Project description:Both self-cleanability and antireflectivity were achieved on quartz surfaces by forming heptadecafluoro-1,1,2,2-tetrahydrodecyltrichlorosilane self-assembled monolayer after fabrication of nanostructures with a mask-free method. By exposing polymethylmethacrylate spin-coated quartz plates to O2 reactive ion etching (RIE) and CF4 RIE successively, three well-defined types of nanopillar arrays were generated: A2, A8, and A11 patterns with average pillar widths of 33?±?4?nm, 55?±?5?nm, and 73?±?14?nm, respectively, were formed. All the fabrication processes including the final cleaning can be finished within 4?h. All nanostructured quartz surfaces exhibited contact angles higher than 155° with minimal water droplet adhesiveness and enhanced transparency (due to antireflectivity) over a broad spectral range from 350 to 900?nm. Furthermore, A2 pattern showed an enhanced antireflective effect that extends to the deep-UV range near 190?nm, which is a drawback region in conventional thin-film-coating approaches as a result of thermal damage. Because, by changing the conditions of successive RIE, the geometrical configurations of nanostructure arrays can be easily modified to meet specific needs, the newly developed fabrication method is expected to be applied in various optic and opto-electrical areas.PACS codes: 06.60.Ei; 81.65.Cf; 81.40.Vw.
Project description:Fresnel zone plates (FZP) are diffractive photonic devices used for high-resolution imaging and lithography at short wavelengths. Their fabrication requires nano-machining capabilities with exceptional precision and strict tolerances such as those enabled by modern lithography methods. In particular, ion beam lithography (IBL) is a noteworthy method thanks to its robust direct writing/milling capability. IBL allows for rapid prototyping of high-resolution FZPs that can be used for high-resolution imaging at soft X-ray energies. Here, we discuss improvements in the process enabling us to write zones down to 15 nm in width, achieving an effective outermost zone width of 30 nm. With a 35% reduction in process time and an increase in resolution by 26% compared to our previous results, we were able to resolve 21 nm features of a test sample using the FZP. The new process conditions are then applied for fabrication of large arrays of high-resolution zone plates. Results show that relatively large areas can be decorated with nanostructured devices via IBL by using multipurpose SEM/FIB instruments with potential applications in FEL focusing, extreme UV and soft X-ray lithography and as wavefront sensing devices for beam diagnostics.
Project description:Achieving ultrasmall dimensions of materials and retaining high throughput are critical fabrication considerations for nanotechnology use. This article demonstrates an integrated approach for developing isolated sub-20 nm silicon oxide features through combined "top-down" and "bottom-up" methods: nanoimprint lithography (NIL) and block copolymer (BCP) lithography. Although techniques like those demonstrated here have been developed for nanolithographic application in the microelectronics processing industry, similar approaches could be utilized for sensor, fluidic, and optical-based devices. Thus, this article centers on looking at the possibility of generating isolated silica structures on substrates. NIL was used to create intriguing three-dimensional (3-D) polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane (POSS) topographical arrays that guided and confined polystyrene-block-poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PS-b-PDMS) BCP nanofeatures in isolated regions. A cylinder forming PS-b-PDMS BCP system was successfully etched using a one-step etching process to create line-space arrays with a period of 35 nm in confined POSS arrays. We highlight large-area (>6 ?m) coverage of line-space arrays in 3-D topographies that could potentially be utilized, for example, in nanofluidic systems. Aligned features for directed self-assembly application are also demonstrated. The high-density, confined silicon oxide nanofeatures in soft lithographic templates over macroscopic areas illustrate the advantages of integrating distinct lithographic methods for attaining discrete features in the deep nanoscale regime.
Project description:Nanostructured surfaces with quasi-random geometries can manipulate light over broadband wavelengths and wide ranges of angles. Optimization and realization of stochastic patterns have typically relied on serial, direct-write fabrication methods combined with real-space design. However, this approach is not suitable for customizable features or scalable nanomanufacturing. Moreover, trial-and-error processing cannot guarantee fabrication feasibility because processing-structure relations are not included in conventional designs. Here, we report wrinkle lithography integrated with concurrent design to produce quasi-random nanostructures in amorphous silicon at wafer scales that achieved over 160% light absorption enhancement from 800 to 1,200 nm. The quasi-periodicity of patterns, materials filling ratio, and feature depths could be independently controlled. We statistically represented the quasi-random patterns by Fourier spectral density functions (SDFs) that could bridge the processing-structure and structure-performance relations. Iterative search of the optimal structure via the SDF representation enabled concurrent design of nanostructures and processing.
Project description:It is now possible to create atomically thin regions of dopant atoms in silicon patterned with lateral dimensions ranging from the atomic scale (angstroms) to micrometers. These structures are building blocks of quantum devices for physics research and they are likely also to serve as key components of devices for next-generation classical and quantum information processing. Until now, the characteristics of buried dopant nanostructures could only be inferred from destructive techniques and/or the performance of the final electronic device; this severely limits engineering and manufacture of real-world devices based on atomic-scale lithography. Here, we use scanning microwave microscopy (SMM) to image and electronically characterize three-dimensional phosphorus nanostructures fabricated via scanning tunneling microscope-based lithography. The SMM measurements, which are completely nondestructive and sensitive to as few as 1900 to 4200 densely packed P atoms 4 to 15 nm below a silicon surface, yield electrical and geometric properties in agreement with those obtained from electrical transport and secondary ion mass spectroscopy for unpatterned phosphorus ? layers containing ~1013 P atoms. The imaging resolution was 37 ± 1 nm in lateral and 4 ± 1 nm in vertical directions, both values depending on SMM tip size and depth of dopant layers. In addition, finite element modeling indicates that resolution can be substantially improved using further optimized tips and microwave gradient detection. Our results on three-dimensional dopant structures reveal reduced carrier mobility for shallow dopant layers and suggest that SMM could aid the development of fabrication processes for surface code quantum computers.