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Bringing standards to imprint lithography

Georgia Tech and Sandia National Labs have come out with a road map for guiding the development of imprint lithography which some believe could become crucial for the chip industry in the next decade.

Imprint lithography sounds like what it is. The technology involves creating a circuit pattern by pressing a mold into a material. But, unlike the king's signet ring, the lines it the mold are only a few nanometers wide. Proponents maintain that imprint will curtail the astronomical costs associated with building factories based around traditional lithography where a light beam draws the circuit patttern. Critics say imprint lithography is sort of like making jewelry with the Play Doh fun factory: the lines just aren't fine enough.

The road map, which required three years of research, examines issues such as how to reduce defects, non-uniform material flow, and cavity filling. It also provided recommendations on how to minimize such issues.

Meanwhile, NIL technology said it has entered an agreement with the Denmark's University of Aarhus and Aalbord University to deliver nanoimprint lithography stamps for a life sciences project.