Silicon microcontact printing engines


R R A Syms, H Zou, K Choonee and R A Lawes


Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering

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A method of self-aligned, microcontact printing that avoids the need for dedicated alignment and stamping equipment is demonstrated. Complete miniature print engines combining elastically supported print heads with alignment structures that mate with corresponding features on etched substrates to allow mechanical registration are constructed from silicon parts. The impression can be transferred manually or using an in-built mechanism such as electrostatic actuation. 10 mm × 10 mm prototypes are fabricated using microelectromechanical systems technology, using a wafer-scale process based on deep reactive ion etching of either bulk silicon or bonded silicon-on-insulator wafers to form all mechanical parts and polydimethylsiloxane spray coating of etched surfaces to form soft stamps. Electromechanical characterization is performed and manual and electrostatic microcontact printing are both demonstrated through 1-hexadecanethiol ink transfer onto gold-coated surfaces over a 5 mm × 5 mm area with a minimumfeature size of ≈2 μm.

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Date added: 2012-08-25 00:00:00 | Last time updated: 2012-09-06 08:52:07 | Viewed: 885 times

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