Florida International University (FIU) is seeking a business partner to develop and commercialize a Method of Synthesis of Graphene using Tip-Based Microreactor Arrays.
There are multiple ways to produce Graphene; it can be produced using exfoliation, thermal decomposition, reduction from Graphene Oxide (GO), Chemical vapor deposition, but every technique has several drawbacks. Direct writing on insulating surfaces has been explored, but has been focused on reducing insulating GO films to locally create graphene by direct patterning. Direct patterning to reduce GO has been accomplished using high resolution scanning thermal or conductive AFM probes and with faster but low resolution laser writing techniques. These approaches eliminate photolithography, and in one step achieve reduction and patterning. However, GO has to be produced that covers the entire substrate, and the graphene that is produced has substantial structural defects affecting mechanical and electrical properties.
In order to meet the needs of the industry, a fabrication process that produces high quality graphene on an insulating surface with submicron resolution, employs a process that minimizes the fabrication steps, and is compatible with existing fabrication process at relatively lower temperature and at pressures closer to atmospheric pressures, and is inexpensive is desirable. FIU researchers have developed a transformative approach to address these needs by synthesizing graphene using a tip-based micro-reactor to directly pattern graphene structures on insulating substrates while maintaining exact control over the position, orientation, and size of the resulting graphene. This was achieved by creating a controllable manufacturing environment using a locally heated scanning probe or one and two dimensional probe arrays (for high throughput). By confining the manufacturing environment to a sub-micron region through nano and miro reactions generated by localized heating, device characteristics can be controlled at a nanoscale level allowing for maskless graphene nano-synthesis.
Semiconductor industry for fabricating high performance devices such as G-FETs, sensors, detectors, etc.
- Requires one step and one tool to complete the graphene fabrication and patterning process as compared to electron beam lithography, conventional photolithography, and other scanning probe based techniques that require several steps and tools.
- Reduction in cost, time, and man power for nano-fabrication.
- Controlled graphene synthesis using a single probe, and high throughput using probe arrays.