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Complex self-assembled patterns using sparse commensurate templates with locally varying motifs

Abstract

Templated self-assembly of block copolymer thin films can generate periodic arrays of microdomains within a sparse template, or complex patterns using 1:1 templates1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16. However, arbitrary pattern generation directed by sparse templates remains elusive. Here, we show that an array of carefully spaced and shaped posts, prepared by electron-beam patterning of an inorganic resist, can be used to template complex patterns in a cylindrical-morphology block copolymer. We use two distinct methods: making the post spacing commensurate with the equilibrium periodicity of the polymer, which controls the orientation of the linear features, and making local changes to the shape or distribution of the posts, which direct the formation of bends, junctions and other aperiodic features in specific locations. The first of these methods permits linear patterns to be directed by a sparse template that occupies only a few percent of the area of the final self-assembled pattern, while the second method can be used to selectively and locally template complex linear patterns.

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Figure 1: Commensurate templating of a cylindrical morphology PS-PDMS block copolymer.
Figure 2: Modelling of block copolymer microdomain morphologies.
Figure 3: Demonstration of local programming of the block copolymer arrangement by changing the motif of the template lattice.
Figure 4: Templated bends and junctions.

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Acknowledgements

The authors acknowledge support from the Semiconductor Research Corporation, the Singapore-MIT Alliance, the Office of Naval Research, and the Nanoelectronics Research Institute. J.K.W.Y. would like to acknowledge his fellowship from A*STAR Singapore. The Research Laboratory of Electronics Scanning-Electron-Beam Lithography Facility provided facilities for this work. The authors also thank M. Mondol and J. Daley for technical assistance and acknowledge helpful discussions with E.L. Thomas.

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J.K.W.Y., Y.-S.J., C.A.R. and K.K.B. conceived and designed the experiments. J.K.W.Y., Y.-S.J. and J.B.C. analysed the experimental results. Y.-S.J. developed the analytical model. R.A.M. and A.A.-K. performed numerical modelling. All authors contributed to discussions and writing of the paper.

Corresponding authors

Correspondence to C. A. Ross or Karl K. Berggren.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Yang, J., Jung, Y., Chang, JB. et al. Complex self-assembled patterns using sparse commensurate templates with locally varying motifs. Nature Nanotech 5, 256–260 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1038/nnano.2010.30

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