Navigation Links
NIST team develops novel method for nanostructured polymer thin films

All researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) wanted was a simple, quick method for making thin films of block copolymers or BCPs (chemically distinct polymers linked together) in order to have decent samples for taking measurements important to the microelectronics industry. What they got for their efforts, as detailed in the Sept. 12, 2007, Nano Letters,* was an unexpected bonus: a unique annealing process that may make practical the use of BCP thin films for patterning nanoscale features in next-generation microchips and data storage devices.

BCP thin films have been highly desired by semiconductor manufacturers as patterns for laying down very fine features on microchips, such as arrays of tightly spaced, nanoscale lines. Annealing certain BCP filmsa controlled heating processcauses one of the two polymer components to segregate into regular patterns of nanocylinder lines separated by distances as small as five nanometers or equally regular arrays of nanoscale dots. Chemically removing the other polymer leaves the pattern behind as a template for building structures on the microchip.

In traditional oven annealing the quality of the films is still insufficient even after days of annealing. A process called hot zone annealingwhere the thin film moves at an extremely slow speed through a heated region that temporarily raises its temperature to a point just above that at which the cylinders become disorderedhas previously been used for creating highly ordered BCP thin films with a minimum of defects but little orientation control. For some polymer combinations, the order-disorder transition temperature is so high that it is virtually impossible for manufacturers to heat them sufficiently without degradation occurring.

To eliminate the time and temperature restraints without losing the order yielded by hot zone annealing, the NIST researchers developed a cold zone annealing system where the polymers are completely processed well below their order-disorder transition temperature. Properly controlled, the lower-temperature processing not only works with BCPs for which hot-zone annealing is impractical, but, as the NIST experiments showed, also repeatedly produces a highly ordered thin film in a matter of minutes. NIST researchers also discovered that the alignment of the cylinders was controlled by the cold zone annealing conditions. Because it is simple, yields consistent product quality and has virtually no limitations on sample dimensions, the NIST method is being evaluated by microelectronic companies to fabricate highly ordered sub 30 nm features.

The next step, the NIST researchers say, is to better understand the fundamental processes that make the cold zone annealing system work so well and refine the measurements needed to evaluate its performance.


Contact: Michael E. Newman
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

Related biology technology :

1. Internet Scout Project develops better tools for online research
2. Gehl develops new remote control boom controller
3. GE Healthcare develops digital medication system
4. U.K. firm develops smart fabrics
5. Scientist takes back patents and develops product others ignored
6. Former SGI/Cray Team Develops Products for G5 Platform
7. IBM Develops Wireless Security Service
8. Wisconsin Researcher Co-Develops Earthquake Alarm
9. Novel PCR Enhancing Factor Improves Performance of Pfu DNA Polymerase
10. High-Fidelity PCR with a Novel Polymerase Mixture
11. Challenge the Performance of Your Hot-Start PCRs with FastStart Taq DNA Polymerase and the Novel FastStart High Fidelity PCR System
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/12/2015)... - Aeterna Zentaris Inc. (NASDAQ:  AEZS) (TSX: AEZ) (the ... commercializing novel treatments in oncology, endocrinology and women,s health, ... the Company,s former Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, ... City office.  David A. ... the Company commented, "After a comprehensive review, the Company,s ...
(Date:10/12/2015)... Rochelle, Virginia (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2015 ... ... LLC announced today that Dr. Srini Srinivasan, has joined the firm as a ... expertise and professional stature enable them to bring extraordinary value to the company's ...
(Date:10/10/2015)... 2015 Am 8. Oktober hat die ... für Kalifornien) ihre Würdigung der International Plasma Awareness ... Aufzeichnungen des Kongresses eintragen lassen. Die IPAW wird ... (PPTA) und ihren Mitgliedsunternehmen unterstützt. Ihre Ziele bestehen ... über Plasmaspenden weltweit , Würdigung des Beitrages ...
(Date:10/9/2015)... LEXINGTON, Mass. , Oct. 9, 2015  Pulmatrix, Inc., ... presentation at two upcoming investor conferences. th ... at 11:00 am PDT (2:00 pm EDT). --> ... 20, 2015 at 11:00 am PDT (2:00 pm EDT). ... James 2015 Small Cap Growth Stock Conference on Thursday, October ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:9/28/2015)... According to a new market ... (Scanner & Others), Application (Access Control & Others), Industry ... Geography Global - Forecast to 2020", published by MarketsandMarkets, the ... Million by 2020, at a CAGR of 23.40% between ... data T ables and 66 Figures ...
(Date:9/24/2015)... YORK , Sept. 24, 2015  EyeLock LLC, ... be showcasing its award winning and latest technology in ... Anaheim, California . EyeLock,s iris ... security with unmatched biometric accuracy, making it the most ... EyeLock,s platform uses video technology to deliver a fast ...
(Date:9/10/2015)... LONDON , Sept. 10, 2015 ... This New Study Reveals Selling Opportunities and Revenue ... What,s the future of biologics, especially new drug ... You will stay ahead with exclusive market data ... can explore trends, developments, results, opportunities and sales ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):