Imprint pressure uniformity is crucial to the pattern uniformity and yield of nanoimprint lithography (NIL) and, hence, its applications. We studied a novel imprint method, air cushion press (ACP), in which the mold and substrate are pressed against each other by gas pressure rather than solid plates, and compared it with a common method, solid parallel-plate press (SPP). We found that (a) under normal imprinting conditions the measured pressure distribution across a 100-mm-diameter single imprint field in ACP is nearly an order of magnitude more uniform; (b) ACP is immune to any dust and topology variations on the backside of the mold or substrate; (c) when a dust particle is between the mold and substrate, ACP reduces the damage area by orders of magnitude; (d) ACP causes much less mold damage because of significantly less lateral shift between the mold and substrate; and (e) ACP has much smaller thermal mass and therefore significantly faster speed for thermal imprinting.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Mechanical Engineering