BRITE Synergy: Tranforming Electron Beam Lithography with Reactive Gases

Grants and Contracts Details


Electron-beam lithography (EBL) is the “primary pattern generator” for almost all applications of nanotechnology. The semiconductor industry is particularly reliant on EBL for making the masks used in integrated circuit manufacturing. Conventional EBL is conducted by scanning a focused beam of electrons over an electron-sensitive resist film in a high vacuum environment. However, the PI’s group recently discovered that EBL can be performed in the presence of a reactive gas which alters the radiation chemistry of the resist exposure process. Incorporating the reactive gas introduces at least three advantages: (1) EBL can be conducted on insulating substrates without conductive coatings, (2) functional materials, such as Teflon, can be directly patterned without using an intermediate resist, and (3) the clearing dose, contrast, and proximity effects of the resist can be tuned to the process requirements without changing materials. The proposed BRITE Synergy Track effort combines the PI’s previous research in electron-beam lithography and electron-beam induced processing to investigate this new approach to nanoscale patterning. The proposed work will expand understanding of the fundamental mechanisms and performance limits of electron-beam lithography in reactive gasses. The research will also form the foundation of a program to expand diversity, equity, and inclusion in nanotechnology through targeted educational efforts at the middle school and graduate levels.
Effective start/end date1/1/2212/31/24


  • National Science Foundation: $407,998.00


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