Our Center relies on specialized equipment to fabricate and characterize devices across many different length scales, nm → mm, and using different materials, such as silicon, metals, ceramics and plastics. The tools and cleanrooms that support the operation of these tools are located in Core Facilities located at our affiliated Universities, UNC—Chapel Hill Analytical and Nanofabrication Laboratory, CHANL; LSU—Center for Advanced Microstructure and Devices, CAMD; and KU Adams Microfabrication Facility.
These facilities are staffed with experts in the area of micro- and nanofabrication and can service a host of users from different institutions. Staff is also available to instruct potential users on the operation of all equipment.
CHANL was established in 2006 and operates as a shared instrumentation laboratory open to UNC researchers from all departments as well as to researchers from other universities, government labs, and industry. CHANL provides: (i) access to a suite of microscopy, fabrication, and spectroscopy tools, (ii) maintenance and repair of all equipment, (iii) training for students and postdocs, and (iv) technical support for researchers. CHANL serves over 300 researchers per year from UNC, other universities, government labs, and industry. Tools within this facility are anchored in a class 100 cleanroom and includes instruments for DRIE, PECVD, metal sputtering, e-beam evaporation, and a Karl Suss MA6 mask aligner system. CHANL also possesses a JenOptik HEX03 hot embossing system and a Resonetic laser ablation tool for rapid prototyping.
Adams Microfabrication Facility— KU
The Adams Microfabrication Facility, located on the first floor of the Multidisciplinary Research Building on KU's west campus, consists of 2,000 ft2 of cleanroom space, 550 ft2 of “dirty” space for manufacturing and machining, and 300 ft2 of office space.
The facility provides capabilities for photolithography, plasma, dry, etching, wet etching, metal and dielectric material thin film deposition, electron microscopy, ellipsometry, and device characterization, laser ablation and engraving, 3D printing, and CNC machining. Specialized equipment includes a Mask Aligner, e-beam evaporator, PECVD system, plasma cleaner and a ICP-RIE unit. In addition, the facility has numerous microscopes for general inspection, ovens and furnaces, a dedicated gas storage room with safety cabinets, 4N house nitrogen in each room, ultrapure water, dedicated process fume hoods and filtered lighting for photolithography. The facility also has new nanoimprinting and hot embossing capabilities and a KERN precision micromilling machine that can rapidly prototype devices with dimensions down to 20 µm. This facility will be moving soon into a new state-of-the-art cleanroom with 5,000 ft2 of space that includes class 100 photolithography bay and a class 1000 metrology bay as well as a class 10,000 dirty space.
The Microfabrication staff provides expertise in processing, photolithography, thin film deposition, electroplating, and metrology. Microfabrication equipment has the capability to generate sub-micron structures in optical photoresist, based on the User's design, for creation of molds or x-ray masks. Optical masks with features as small as five micrometers are realized with the Mann pattern generator. Thin films can be deposited for many different metal layers through e-beam or sputter deposition. SEM analysis, interferometric capabilities, thermal analyses, and scanning tip measurements provide a variety of metrological tools for use by trained researchers.
CAMD also possesses a fabrication beam line to do X-ray lithography. The CAMD cleanroom is a 2,500 ft2 Class 100 facility. It is fully equipped to support LIGA-based microfabrication with state-of-the-art instruments. All utilities are supplied in a "through the wall" fashion into the cleanroom.
The Cleanroom staff aides in basic support of microfabrication and nanotechnology capabilities by providing infrastructure, environment, equipment and as well as education and training in these various fields. The major pieces of equipment available at this facility includes a Mann 600 pattern generator, Oriel UV exposure station, Quintel UL700-OBS Aligner and DUV exposure station, vacuum and convection ovens, e-beam deposition, and a suite of metrology tools.