Ultraviolet nanoimprint lithography (UV-NIL) requires high durability of the mold for the mass production of nanostructures. To evaluate the durability of a line-patterned replica mold made of high-hardness UV curable resin, repetitive transfer and contact angle measurements of the replica mold were carried out. In the line patterns, as the contact angle decreases due to repeated transfer, capillary action occurs, and water flows along them. Therefore, it can be said that a mold with a line pattern exhibits an anisotropic contact angle because these values vary depending on the direction of the contact angle measurement. Subsequently, these anisotropic characteristics were investigated. It was determined that it was possible to predict the lifetime of line-and-space molds over repeated transfers. As the transcription was repeated, the contact angle along the line patterns decreased significantly before becoming constant. Moreover, the contact angle across the line pattern decreased slowly while maintaining a high contact angle with respect to the contact angle along the line pattern. The contact angle then decreased linearly from approximately 90°. The mold was found to be macroscopically defect when the values of the contact angle along the line pattern and the contact angle across the line pattern were close. Predicting the mold’s lifetime could potentially lead to a shortened durability evaluation time and the avoidance of pattern defects.
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