Directed Assembly of Block Copolymers on Lithographically Defined Chemically Nanopatterned Substrate
Directed Assembly of Block Copolymers on Lithographically Defined Chemically Nanopatterned Substrates
Prof. Paul Nealey
Institute for Molecular Engineering
University of Chicago
The use of block copolymers in the lithographic process is an attractive strategy to augment and enhance the capabilities of current tools in nanomanufacturing. We employ electron beam and 193 nm immersion lithography to fabricate chemically patterned surfaces. Block copolymer films are deposited on the surfaces and annealed. By judicious choice of the chemistry and the geometry of the patterned regions, the domain structure of the block copolymer film may be directed to assembly into desirable architectures for applications such as bit patterned media or integrated circuits. Challenges that remain in materials and process development include delineation of the degree of perfection that can be obtained, and fabrication of sub 10 nm features in manufacturing-relevant processes. Here we report (1) the relationships between attributes of the chemical pattern and the degree of perfection of the assembled block copolymer films, (2) two approaches to processing films on chemical patterns to enable assembly of high resolution copolymers with differing block surface energies, and (3) design principles for the synthesis of new block copolymers for directed self-assembly with sub 10 nm features.
Nealey is a pioneer of directed self-assembly, which is becoming very important in microelectronics processing to create patterns for integrated circuits. He is one of the world’s leading experts on patterning organic materials, literally creating physical patterns of structure and composition in the materials at the nanometer length scale, where the patterns affect the function of the materials.
Many of Nealey’s collaborative projects with Juan de Pablo have focused on block copolymer films, which spontaneously self-assemble to form structures with dimensions that range from three to 50 nanometers. Nealey’s experimental and de Pablo’s computational teamwork extends even to jointly advised doctoral students. Their approach has become so powerfully productive that other institutions seek to replicate their formula for success with their own research teams.
Nealey’s interest in tissue engineering of corneal prosthetic devices, pursued in collaboration with a veterinary ophthalmologist, demonstrates the versatility of his expertise in fabricating nanostructured surfaces.
Nealey holds 14 patents and is the author of more than 180 publications. His honors include fellowship in the American Physical Society, the 2010 Nanoscale Science and Engineering Forum Award from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, and a 2009 Inventor Recognition Award from Semiconductor Research Corporation.
Wednesday, January 30
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