Nanolithography in thermally sacrificial polymers using nanoscale thermal probes

Yueming Hua, Shubham Saxena, William P. King, Clifford L. Henderson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


This paper reports a novel lithography method that utilizes local nanoscale thermal decomposition of polycarbonate films using heated atomic force microscope cantilever probe tips. The effect of polycarbonate structure and physiochemical properties on the lithographic performance of the thermal writing process have been explored. It is observed that amorphous linear polycarbonates which possess glass transition temperatures lower than their decomposition temperature generally exhibit substantial thermal deformation during thermal writing. In contrast, thermal writing on crystalline regions of semi-crystalline linear polycarbonate films produced good pattern definition. However, the semi-crystalline nature of the film results in substantial surface topography in the thin film which is undesirable for high resolution patterning and the amorphous regions of the film still suffer from local thermal deformation during writing. Amorphous cross-linkable polycarbonate sacrificial polymers have been synthesized and are shown to be able to resist thermal deformation of features during writing and are shown capable of producing good patterned images using the heated AFM probe writing technique.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvances in Resist Technology and Processing XXIII
StatePublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes
EventAdvances in Resist Technology and Processing XXIII - San JOse, CA, United States
Duration: Feb 20 2006Feb 22 2006

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Volume6153 I
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


OtherAdvances in Resist Technology and Processing XXIII
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan JOse, CA


  • AFM
  • Cantilever
  • Heated
  • Nanolithography
  • Polycarbonate
  • Sacrificial polymer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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