A new design of an orientation stage for scanning near-field lithography is presented based on flexure hinges. Employing flexure mechanisms in place of rigid-body mechanisms is one of the most promising techniques to efficiently implement high precision motion and avoid problems caused by friction. For near-field scanning lithography with evanescent wave, best resolution can be achieved in contact mode. However, if the mask is fixed on a rigid stage, contact friction will deteriorate the lithography surface. To reduce friction while maintaining good contact between the mask and the substrate, the mask should be held with high lateral stiffness and low torsion stiffness. This design can hold the mask in place during the scanning process and achieve passive alignment. Circular flexure hinges, whose parameters are determined by motion requirements based on Schotborgh’s equation, are used as the basic unit of the stage to achieve passive alignment by compensating motions from elastic deformation. A finite-element analysis is performed to verify this property of the stage. With the aid of this stage, 21 nm resolution is achieved in static near-field lithography and 18 nm line-width in scanning near-field lithography.
Applied Physics A: Materials Science Processing – Springer Journals
Published: Aug 21, 2017
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