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Optical and Interferometric Lithography - Nanotechnology Enablers

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1 Author(s)
Brueck, S.R.J. ; New Mexico Univ., Albuquerque, NM, USA

Interferometric lithography (IL), the interference of a small number of coherent optical beams, is a powerful technique for the fabrication of a wide array of samples of interest for nanoscience and nanotechnology. The techniques and limits of IL are discussed with particular attention to the smallest scales achievable. With immersion techniques, the smallest pattern size for a single exposure is a half-pitch of λ/4n where λ is the optical wavelength and n is the refractive index of the immersion material. Currently with a 193-nm excimer laser source and H2O immersion, this limiting dimension is ∼34 nm. With nonlinear spatial frequency multiplication techniques, this limit is extended by factors of 1/2, 1/3, etc.-extending well into the nanoscale regime. IL provides an inexpensive, large-area capability as a result of its parallelism. Multiple exposures, multiple beams, and mix-and-match with other lithographies extend the range of applicability. Imaging IL provides an approach to arbitrary structures with comparable resolution. Numerous application areas, including nanoscale epitaxial growth for semiconductor heterostructures; nanofluidics for biological separations; nanomagnetics for increased storage density; nanophotonics including distributed feedback and distributed Bragg reflectors, two- and three-dimensional photonic crystals, metamaterials, and negative refractive index materials for enhanced optical interactions are briefly reviewed.

Published in:

Proceedings of the IEEE  (Volume:93 ,  Issue: 10 )