Towards Fabricating Nano-Scale Array Features on Silicon Using Atomic Layer Deposition

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Student Presentation

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Faculty Sponsor

Elton Graugnard


The current standard for mass-producing semi-conductor devices with features on the nano-scale is a process called photolithography. This process transfers nanoscale patterns into silicon surfaces by illuminating photosensitive polymers with ultra-violet light. Due primarily to the diffraction limit of light, this fabrication approach in nearing its minimum size limit and has begun to exponentially increase in cost as the size of the components of the semiconductor devices decreases. A potential alternative to “top-down” photolithography is the “bottom-up” approach of self-assembly using DNA origami, which is a programmable biomolecular method of creating complex two- and three-dimensional nanostructures from DNA. When combined with conformal thin films grown by atomic layer deposition (ALD), such nanostructures could enable nanoscale pattern transfer into silicon with an order of magnitude greater resolution than possible with photolithography. Towards this goal, here, we present progress in creating DNA origami nanostructures designed to form large-scale, hierarchical, two-dimensional arrays through programmable tile-based polymerization. Existing DNA origami tile designs were analyzed, and potential design improvements were identified using computer-assisted design tools. Arrays formed from the improved tile designs will serve as molecularly-programmed masks for nanoscale pattern transfer.

Acknowledgments: We thank the students and staff within the Nanoscale Materials & Device Research Group (nano.boisestate.edu) for support.

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