3 years ago

Self-Collapse Lithography

Self-Collapse Lithography
Tianxing Man, Jeffrey J. Schwartz, Qing Yang, Xiaobin Xu, Paul S. Weiss, Steven J. Jonas, Chuanzhen Zhao, Anne M. Andrews
We report a facile, high-throughput soft lithography process that utilizes nanoscale channels formed naturally at the edges of microscale relief features on soft, elastomeric stamps. Upon contact with self-assembled monolayer (SAM) functionalized substrates, the roof of the stamp collapses, resulting in the selective removal of SAM molecules via a chemical lift-off process. With this technique, which we call self-collapse lithography (SCL), sub-30 nm patterns were achieved readily using masters with microscale features prepared by conventional photolithography. The feature sizes of the chemical patterns can be varied continuously from ∼2 μm to below 30 nm by decreasing stamp relief heights from 1 μm to 50 nm. Likewise, for fixed relief heights, reducing the stamp Young’s modulus from ∼2.0 to ∼0.8 MPa resulted in shrinking the features of resulting patterns from ∼400 to ∼100 nm. The self-collapse mechanism was studied using finite element simulation methods to model the competition between adhesion and restoring stresses during patterning. These results correlate well with the experimental data and reveal the relationship between the line widths, channel heights, and Young’s moduli of the stamps. In addition, SCL was applied to pattern two-dimensional arrays of circles and squares. These chemical patterns served as resists during etching processes to transfer patterns to the underlying materials (e.g., gold nanostructures). This work provides new insights into the natural propensity of elastomeric stamps to self-collapse and demonstrates a means of exploiting this behavior to achieve patterning via nanoscale chemical lift-off lithography.

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.nanolett.7b02269

DOI: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.7b02269

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