High Rate Nanolaminate Manufacturing
Atomic layer deposition (ALD) imparts digital control over film thickness, high quality and excellent conformality. Its primary drawback is the low deposition rate, which precludes its use for a number of applications. The Wolden group has pioneered the use of pulsed plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) as an alternative approach for self-limiting growth, i.e. 1 Å/pulse. growth behavior. With appropriate reactor design and operation deposition rates >30 nm/min have been obtained, which will allow us to extend the atomic scale control of ALD to mesocale structure ( 50 - 1000 nm). Having established the process for a number of individual oxides (Ta2O5, Al2O3, ZnO, TiO2), the goal of this project are to demonstrate the technique's utility for high rate nanolaminate manufacturing. Diverse applications for these materials including high k dielectrics, precision optical components, and protective barrier coatings. The image on this page is a TEM image of a inorganic/organic hydrid nanolaminate consisting of alternating 100 nm layers of silicone (white) and silica (grey). These organic/inorganic hybrid structures are applied to flexible substrates and being explored for dielectrics and moisture barriers relevant to flexible opto-electronic devices. PhD candidate Rahki Patel is leading our efforts in this area. Undergraduates David Chiaveta, Sara Chmelka, and Sterling Parks are helping us with the formation of electrical contacts and and device characterization.
Support for this project is being provided by the National Science Foundation's Division of Civil, Mechanical, and Manufacturing Innovation (CMMI) through award #0826323.