Flex Your Tech: Roll-to-Roll Nanotechnology is Ready, Are You? (Carter - UMass)


“Flex Your Tech: Roll-to-Roll Nanotechnology is Ready, Are You?”

Prof. Kenneth R. Carter
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

PLEASE NOTE: Location is at the Hilton Garden Inn in San Mateo this month


While nanoimprint lithography (NIL) has distinct advantages over other lithography techniques when practiced on flat substrates, most embodiments of the technology are sequential batch processes which consume valuable time and hinder high throughput. To overcome the inherent drawbacks afforded to conventional NIL, efforts have been made to create a continuous roll-to-roll (R2RNIL) process. Since a plethora of non-nanoscale R2R printing processes have been known for some time, in many ways R2RNIL is probably closer to use in commercial processes than other NIL techniques. R2RNIL can trace its history to the decorative texturing of thermoplastics and there is a great deal of information that can be found of examples going back over 50 years in the patent literature. All of the R2RNIL work to date has been performed on custom-built tools – there are no commercial sources for such tools. Our new tool design incorporates many of the successful features of reported designs and they have been built by a company with experience in making similar modular tools. The intent of the company is to produce multiple tools and sell these tools to the research and development sector to enable commercialization of R2RNIL by any number of entities for a wide variety of end-applications.

Successful implementation of a high-speed roll-to-roll nanoimprinting technique for continuous manufacturing of electronic devices has been hindered due to lack of simple substrate preparation steps, as well as lack of durable and long lasting molds that can faithfully replicate nanofeatures with high fidelity over hundreds or thousands of imprinting cycles. In this work, we demonstrate large-area high-speed continuous roll-to-roll nanoimprinting of 1D and 2D micron to sub-100 nm features on flexible substrate using perfluoropolyether (PFPE) hybrid molds on a custom designed roll-to-roll nanoimprinter. The efficiency and reliability of the PFPE based mold for the dynamic roll-to-roll patterning process was investigated. The PFPE hybrid mold replicated nanofeatures with high-fidelity and maintained superb mold performance in terms of dimensional integrity of the nanofeatures, nearly defect free pattern transfer and exceptional mold recovering capability throughout hundreds of imprinting cycles. The roll-to-roll nanoimprinted substrate was used to suspend multiwall carbon nanotubes applied via a simple roll-to-roll nanocoating process for the fabrication of highly sensitive infrared (IR) and terahertz (THz) sensors. The successful roll-to-roll sensor fabrication process developed in the present work has opened up a new low cost, high volume manufacturing technique for the production of sensors based on 1D nanomaterials.

Speaker Background

Prof. Carter joined the UMass Polymer Science and Engineering Department faculty in 2004 after performing polymer research for 13 years at IBM’s Almaden Research Center in San Jose, CA. His research involves the synthesis and characterization of novel polymeric materials with specially designed properties. Carter’s research has focused on the development of organic and hybrid materials for future use in advanced electronics and storage technologies. Dr. Carter has numerous publications and over 30 patents in these areas. Many of the materials and processes invented have been integrated into advanced semiconductor manufacturing environments. Dr. Carter established the University of Massachusetts Nanoimprint Lithography Laboratory and is a Test Bed Project coordinator for the new NSF-funded Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center for Hierarchical Manufacturing at UMass. He is currently the Associate Director for Research of the UMass Materials Research Science & Engineering Center on Polymers (MRSEC). His teaching interests include graduate-level courses in polymer chemistry and advanced polymeric materials. His research group at UMass focuses on polymer synthesis, polymer brush layers, organic electronic materials, and advanced nanopatterned materials design and synthesis.

In addition to his many other honors, Prof. Carter is a Fellow of the American Chemical Society and a past Chair of the ACS Division of Polymer Chemistry.


Friday, January 16, 2015


Hilton Garden Inn – San Mateo
2000 Bridgepointe Circle
San Mateo, CA




6 PM social hour
7 PM dinner
8 PM lecture


Employed/postdoc Student/unemployed/retired
Early Registration  $30 $15
Registration $35 $20
Walk-in (not guaranteed) $40 $25

Lecture-only is free.



We accept cash or checks at the door, or online payment via credit card. No-shows are responsible for full payment of registration fee. Cancellations must be received prior to the final deadline for reservations.


Please register on the web page or contact:

Len Radzilowski
phone: 650-361-3264

Deadline for registration:

11:59PM, Friday, January 9 for early registration discount.
5PM, Tuesday, January 13 for regular registration.

Dinner Selection:

Seafood - Tortilla-cursted tilapia
Chicken - Chicken Parmagiana
Vegetarian - Spinach Ricotta Ravioli

You should receive confirmation of your registration; if not, please contact us again.

We are sorry but registration for this event is now closed.

Please contact us if you would like to know if spaces are still available.