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TCNL fabs ferroelectric nanostructures on plastic

Posted: 21 Jul 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:nanometer-scale? ferroelectric? nanostructures?

Georgia Institute of Technology research have developed a new way to fabricate nanometer-scale ferroelectric structures directly on flexible substrates that would normally be unable to withstand the processing temperatures required to create such nanostructures.

Patterning technique
The technique, known as thermochemical nanolithography (TCNL), uses a heated atomic force microscope (AFM) tip to produce patterns. It could then facilitate high-density, low-cost production of complex ferroelectric structures for energy harvesting arrays, sensors and actuators in nano-electromechanical systems (NEMS) and micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS).

In this report
??Patterning technique
??Fabricating ferroelectric materials

"We can directly create piezoelectric materials of the shape we want, where we want them, on flexible substrates for use in energy harvesting and other applications," said Nazanin Bassiri-Gharb, co-author of the paper and an assistant professor in the School of Mechanical Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology. "This is the first time that structures like these have been directly grown with a CMOS-compatible process at such a small resolution. Not only have we been able to grow these ferroelectric structures at low substrate temperatures, but we have also been able to pattern them at very small scales," she said.

Using the patterning technique, the researchers have produced wires approximately 30nm wide and spheres with diameters of approximately 10nm. Spheres with potential application as ferroelectric memory were fabricated at densities exceeding 200 gigabytes per square inch, which is currently the record for this perovskite-type ferroelectric material, said Suenne Kim, the paper's first author and a postdoctoral fellow in laboratory of Prof. Elisa Riedo in Georgia Tech's School of Physics.

Ferroelectric nanostructures

Ferroelectric nanostructures

The research, sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy, included not only Georgia Tech researchers but scientists from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and the University of Nebraska Lincoln as well.

The research team included Yaser Bastani from the G.W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Tech, Seth Marder and Kenneth Sandhage, both from Georgia Tech's School of Chemistry and Biochemistry and School of Materials Science and Engineering, and Alexei Gruverman and Haidong Lu from the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

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