Engineering block copolymers for advanced lithography

Zhou, Sunshine
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Block copolymer (BCP) nanoimprint lithography is an attractive possible solution for manufacturing hard disk drives with information densities greater than 1 Tbit/in². At these densities, individual bits must be smaller than 10 nm, and BCPs can be engineered to spontaneously self-segregate into features on this size scale. In addition to small feature sizes, industrially relevant BCPs should have simple orientation strategies and possess good etch contrast and resistance. Several silicon-containing BCPs were investigated due to the increased etch contrast and resistance imparted by silicon. The synthesis, characterization, and thin film studies of three silicon-containing BCPs are detailed. Due to the surface energy mismatch between the silicon-containing block and the organic block, solvent annealing and top coats were needed to perpendicularly orient these materials. While these materials possess many advantages, they each have shortcomings that prevent them from being ideal industrial materials. A derivative of poly(styrene-block-methyl methacrylate) was engineered to take advantage of its simple orientation procedure while decreasing the smallest achievable feature size. The synthesis and characterization, including determination of the [chi] parameter, of this BCP are detailed. The thin film assembly of this BCP was also successfully demonstrated, and this dissertation concludes with several ideas for future studies.