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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2019 May 21;116(21):10264-10269. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1820420116. Epub 2019 May 8.

Electrochemical nanoimprinting of silicon.

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The Polytechnic School, Arizona State University, Mesa, AZ 85212.
Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801.
The Polytechnic School, Arizona State University, Mesa, AZ 85212;


Scalable nanomanufacturing enables the commercialization of nanotechnology, particularly in applications such as nanophotonics, silicon photonics, photovoltaics, and biosensing. Nanoimprinting lithography (NIL) was the first scalable process to introduce 3D nanopatterning of polymeric films. Despite efforts to extend NIL's library of patternable media, imprinting of inorganic semiconductors has been plagued by concomitant generation of crystallography defects during imprinting. Here, we use an electrochemical nanoimprinting process-called Mac-Imprint-for directly patterning electronic-grade silicon with 3D microscale features. It is shown that stamps made of mesoporous metal catalysts allow for imprinting electronic-grade silicon without the concomitant generation of porous silicon damage while introducing mesoscale roughness. Unlike most NIL processes, Mac-Imprint does not rely on plastic deformation, and thus, it allows for replicating hard and brittle materials, such as silicon, from a reusable polymeric mold, which can be manufactured by almost any existing microfabrication technique.


3D silicon micromachining; metal-assisted chemical etching; microfabrication; nanoimprinting; silicon photonics

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