Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > 'Nano-foundry' technique yields ultra-durable probes from diamond

Abstract:
When a team of university and industry researchers tried a novel, foundry-style mold-filling technique to make nanoscale devices, they realized they had discovered a gem.

Not only did they pioneer a three-dimensional nanoscale fabrication method, they used the process to make ultra-hard, wear-resistant nanoprobes out of a material similar to diamond.

by Renee Meiller

'Nano-foundry' technique yields ultra-durable probes from diamond

Madison, WI | Posted on March 4th, 2010

On a larger scale, materials that look smooth still abrade because of slight irregularities and defects on their surfaces. However, at the nanoscale, atoms rub off one at a time, creating new challenges for researchers who build devices sometimes just tens of atoms wide.

"The effects of friction are important in nanoscale devices and processes, where surface forces such as friction are increasingly dominant due to the high surface-to-volume ratio," says Kumar Sridharan, a distinguished research professor of engineering physics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and member of the research team.

The team, which also included researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and IBM Research-Zurich, published details of its research Jan. 31 in the advance online edition of Nature Nanotechnology.

The advance is key because it demonstrates a method for applying, in a three-dimensional nanoscale application, silicon-containing diamondlike carbon, or Si-DLC. In the study, the researchers showed that Si-DLC, which is prized for its low friction and high wear-resistance at the macroscale, also exhibits similar outstanding wear-resistance at the nanoscale.

"It was not clear that materials that are wear-resistant at the macroscale exhibit the same property at the nanoscale," says lead author Harish Bhaskaran, a former IBM researcher who now is a researcher in the Yale University Department of Electrical Engineering.

Developed by Sridharan, the new "nano foundry" technique easily could scale up for commercial manufacturing.

Using an IBM silicon-on-insulator wafer etched with sharp, pyramid-shaped "molds," Sridharan used Si-DLC to fabricate ultrasharp tips, with a 5 nanometer radius, on standard silicon microcantilevers.

Currently, manufacturers etch the tips out of silicon. However, for the new foundry-style method, Sridharan exploited plasma immersion ion implantation and deposition, a room-temperature process previously used for applying, or "depositing," coatings on implanting ions into other materials. "We've always deposited thin films on materials," he says. "We've looked at it as a two-dimensional surface-modification process."

In three dimensions, the technique works somewhat like the way in which a snowfall blankets the ground. In this case, the "snow" is ionized hexamethyl disiloxane, a liquid precursor to Si-DLC that gasifies in the plasma chamber and ultimately packs neatly into the molds on the IBM wafer. "Our process has allowed us to fill a very sharp tip, very accurately," says Sridharan.

Another advantage is that Si-DLC is an amorphous, rather than crystalline, material. If a crystal is too big, the mold will fill irregularly and limit the tip sharpness. However, an amorphous material can slide atom by atom into the mold, filling it completely, like raindrops into a bucket.

In addition to filling the tip molds completely, Si-DLC also coats the entire wafer. The researchers developed a simple, commercially feasible two-step silicon etching process to release the tip and the integrated cantilever from the wafer.

The tips have applications in atomic-force microscopy, data storage and nanofabrication. In wear tests, in which the researchers slid the tips continuously over a silicon dioxide surface for several days, they found the Si-DLC tips were 3,000 times more wear-resistant than silicon tips. "We've taken a material that's good at the macroscale, we fabricate it at the nanoscale, and we show it's wear-resistant at the nanoscale," says Bhaskaran.

Other authors on the Nature Nanotechnology paper include Bernd Gotsmann, Abu Sebastian, Ute Drechsler, Mark A. Lantz, Michel Despont, Papot Jaroenapibal, Robert W. Carpick, and Yun Chen.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Renee Meiller
(608) 262-2481


Kumar Sridharan
(608) 263-4789


Copyright © University of Wisconsin-Madison

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Nanofiltration Membrane Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Nanozirconia Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Self-Healing Nano Anti-rust Coatings Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Nano Spray Instrument Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Possible Futures

Nanofiltration Membrane Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Nanozirconia Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Self-Healing Nano Anti-rust Coatings Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Nano Spray Instrument Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Academic/Education

Pakistani Students Who Survived Terror Attack to Attend Weeklong “NanoDiscovery Institute” at SUNY Poly CNSE in Albany July 29th, 2015

Deben reports on the use of their CT500 in the X-ray microtomography laboratory at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia July 22nd, 2015

JPK reports on the use of SPM in the Messersmith Group at UC Berkeley looking at biologically inspired polymer adhesives. July 21st, 2015

Renishaw adds Raman analysis to Scanning Electron Microscopy at the University of Sydney, Australia July 9th, 2015

Memory Technology

Controlling phase changes in solids: Controlling phase changes in solids July 29th, 2015

Reshaping the solar spectrum to turn light to electricity: UC Riverside researchers find a way to use the infrared region of the sun's spectrum to make solar cells more efficient July 27th, 2015

Spintronics: Molecules stabilizing magnetism: Organic molecules fixing the magnetic orientation of a cobalt surface/ building block for a compact and low-cost storage technology/ publication in Nature Materials July 25th, 2015

Better memory with faster lasers July 14th, 2015

Nanotubes/Buckyballs/Fullerenes

Controlling Dynamic Behavior of Carbon Nanosheets in Structures Made Possible July 30th, 2015

March 2016; 6th Int'l Conference on Nanostructures in Iran July 29th, 2015

Short wavelength plasmons observed in nanotubes: Berkeley Lab researchers create Ludinger liquid plasmons in metallic SWNTs July 28th, 2015

'Seeing' molecular interactions could give boost to organic electronics July 28th, 2015

Discoveries

Heating and cooling with light leads to ultrafast DNA diagnostics July 31st, 2015

Theoretical Physicists at Freie Universität Berlin Develop New Insights into Interface between Classical and Quantum Worlds July 31st, 2015

Sol-gel capacitor dielectric offers record-high energy storage July 30th, 2015

Controlling Dynamic Behavior of Carbon Nanosheets in Structures Made Possible July 30th, 2015

Announcements

Nano Spray Instrument Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Nanocellulose Market 2015 - Global Industry Survey, Analysis, Size, Share, Outlook and Forecast to 2020 July 31st, 2015

Heating and cooling with light leads to ultrafast DNA diagnostics July 31st, 2015

Theoretical Physicists at Freie Universität Berlin Develop New Insights into Interface between Classical and Quantum Worlds July 31st, 2015

Tools

Heating and cooling with light leads to ultrafast DNA diagnostics July 31st, 2015

Take a trip through the brain July 30th, 2015

Publication on Atomic Force Microscopy based nanoscale IR Spectroscopy (AFM-IR) persists as a 2015 top downloaded paper July 29th, 2015

Nanometrics Announces Upcoming Investor Events July 28th, 2015

Alliances/Trade associations/Partnerships/Distributorships

Liquipel Debuts Eyesight-Saving ION-Glass Blue Light Protection for iPhones and Androids at RadioShack Stores Nationwide: Liquipel's Unique Protective Screen, Available at RadioShack, Cuts Harmful Blue Light Implicated in Macular Degeneration by 10x July 28th, 2015

Dais Analytic's Business Affiliate in China Announces Ten-Year Strategic Energy Efficiency Business Arrangement With COFCO: Dais Beijing to Perform Feasibility Study on Over 80 Buildings to Improve Efficiencies as Part of Overall Hotel Energy-Savings Project July 23rd, 2015

Leti and Diabeloop Project Aims at Developing Artificial Pancreas for Diabetes Treatment July 22nd, 2015

Imec and Panasonic Demonstrate Breakthrough RRAM Cell July 16th, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project