Functional Polymer Micro- and Nanostructures by Nanoimprint
X. Cheng, H. Park, D. Cui
Texas A&M University, College Station, US
Keywords: nanoimprint, functional, polymer, 3D structure
Abstract:We present here the patterning of polymer micro- and nanostructures by nanoimprint technique. Since its inception, nanoimprint has gained huge interest as a high-resolution and low-cost lithography technique for microelectronic fabrication. We demonstrate that nanoimprint is an ideal technique for patterning polymer micro- and nanostructures with simple process and low cost. Particularly, nanoimprint process only involves heat and pressure, which both are benign to functional polymers such as conjugated polymers. It enables nondestructive patterning of functional polymers into micro- and nanostructures, thus opens up a wide range of new applications such as nanoelectronics and nanophotonics based on functional polymers. Moreover, we discover that the nanoimprint process will lead to polymer chain orientation in patterned polymer micro- and nanostructures. The degree and the direction of polymer chain orientation can be manipulated by process parameters and mold patterns. With modified nanoimprint scheme, it is even possible to pattern three-dimensional polymer microstructures for advanced applications in MEMS such as multilayer microfluidic channels and polymer scaffolds for tissue engineering. Exemplar functional polymer micro- and nanostructures patterned by nanoimprint and their applications will be presented.