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Polymers 2015, 7(4), 592-609; doi:10.3390/polym7040592

Block Co-Polymers for Nanolithography: Rapid Microwave Annealing for Pattern Formation on Substrates

1
Materials Chemistry Section, Department of Chemistry, University College Cork, College Road, Cork, Ireland
2
Centre for Adaptive Nanostructures and Nanodevices (CRANN), Trinity College Dublin, College Green, Dublin 2, Ireland
3
Tyndall National Institute, Lee Maltings, Prospect Row, Cork, Ireland
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Seth Darling
Received: 9 December 2014 / Revised: 6 March 2015 / Accepted: 23 March 2015 / Published: 30 March 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Polymer Brushes)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [13674 KB, uploaded 30 March 2015]   |  

Abstract

The integration of block copolymer (BCP) self-assembled nanopattern formation as an alternative lithographic tool for nanoelectronic device fabrication faces a number of challenges such as defect densities, feature size, pattern transfer, etc. Key barriers are the nanopattern process times and pattern formation on current substrate stack layers such as hard masks (e.g., silicon nitride, Si3N4). We report a rapid microwave assisted solvothermal (in toluene environments) self-assembly and directed self-assembly of a polystyrene-block-polydimethylsiloxane (PS-b-PDMS) BCP thin films on planar and topographically patterned Si3N4 substrates. Hexagonally arranged, cylindrical structures were obtained and good pattern ordering was achieved. Factors affecting BCP self-assembly, notably anneal time and temperature, were studied and seen to have significant effects. Graphoepitaxy within the topographical structures provided long range, translational alignment of the patterns. The effect of surface topography feature size and spacing was investigated. The solvothermal microwave based technique used to provide periodic order in the BCP patterns showed significant promise and ordering was achieved in much shorter periods than more conventional thermal and solvent annealing methods. The implications of the work in terms of manufacturing technologies are discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: polymer brush; block copolymer; silicon nitride substrate; solvothermal process; microwave anneal; self-assembly; graphoepitaxy; plasma etching; nanoscale patterns polymer brush; block copolymer; silicon nitride substrate; solvothermal process; microwave anneal; self-assembly; graphoepitaxy; plasma etching; nanoscale patterns
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Borah, D.; Rasappa, S.; Senthamaraikannan, R.; Holmes, J.D.; Morris, M.A. Block Co-Polymers for Nanolithography: Rapid Microwave Annealing for Pattern Formation on Substrates. Polymers 2015, 7, 592-609.

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