Exploring Vacuum Casting Techniques for Micron and Submicron Features
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A study of resolution limits in standard rapid prototyping vacuum cast molding processes and adaptation of this technique to reach submicron accuracy is proposed. Micro-fabrication technologies are used to fabricate micron and submicron high aspect-ratio patterns on the original parts. The molding of the original parts is optimized to allow replication of submicron features. In carefully exploring materials and surface treatments, cast parts are successfully replicated with submicron and high aspect ratio micron structures. These encouraging results enable the use of such processes for micro- and nano-systems applications and open the door to development and production of low cost, high resolution biochips.