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Microfabrication and Mechanical Characterization of Suspended Carbon Microstructures

K. Malladi, C. Wang, M.J. Madou, W. Xue and T. Cui
University of California, Irvine, US

C-MEMS, pyrolysis, photoresist, Young’s modulus, nanoindentation

The idea of suspended carbon micro/nanostructures has been researched by a few research groups ], however, controlled fabrication of suspended carbon micro/nano structures in desired positions and with the desired shape and dimension is still a big challenge. Apart from the fact that carbon has a wide electrochemical stability window, suspended micro/nano structures are also free of Van-der-waal’s interactions with the substrate which makes them interesting for integration in mechanical, electrical, and electromechanical measurements. One of the biggest advantages of suspended micro/nano carbon structures is the high surface to volume ratio. In this work, suspended C-MEMS structures were fabricated by accurately controlling the processing parameter using e-beam lithography and pyrolysis of photoresist (such as: SU-8 negative photoresist) method. The sensor-to-sensor reproducibility problem is solved in our method of fabricating suspended structures since, in this case, e-beam exposure was used to fabricate suspended microstructures and the electron energy and dose can be used to control the exposure depth in writing each line.The mechanical property of these suspended structures is also investigated by nanoindentation method.

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