March 2008 Increased throughput for imprint  step and repeat.
At the Advanced Microlithography Conference in San Jose, Molecular Imprints presented a series of papers.
Some of the key results.
Increased throughput by 2.5x in a new version of the S&R system - Imprio 300.  
3 sec per field fill time for contact layer, need <1 sec for 25 wph 300 mm wafers
Line edge roughness  <2.5 nm 3 sigma
Overlay < 20 nm mix and match, <15 nm 3 sigma matched machine
Defect density <  3 per squ cm 200 nm defect size
Edge die printed has been demonstrated.

February 2008 Production imprint for optics
In a personal communication, EVG  announces that they have multiple systems being used to manufacture
micro-optics by UV imprint. This process (on 200mm wafer scale) is very popular in the manufacture of micro-
optics that are used to build lens stacks for CMOS image sensors.  For this type of application, they have first
customers, who are producing these parts in commercial volume (using multiple imprint systems). In 2005
Heptagon announced that they were using an EVG tool for optics production.

The second wave of producers is in pilot line production, with volume production scheduled for later this year.

September 2007 Imprint challenges for advanced devices
Toshiba publishes the first independent evaluation of the Molecular Imprints Imprio 250 S&R system. Some of
the highlights include:
18 nm isolated features
22 nm dense features
<1 nm line width control
<2 nm line edge roughness
<20 nm overlay
<0.3 defects per squ cm for defects > 200 nm
MII  has reported  steady progress in defect reduction over the last few years.

September 2007NNT A robust automatic low cost imprint solution
Nanolithography Solutions has licensed the imprint technology developed  HP Labs, and Optical Associates are
selling a version adapted for the OAI aligner range. The HP Labs has published results on 33 nm pitch crossbar  
memories made using their technology. The unique  features of this technology is that it allows conventional
contact or proximity printers to be modified to a fully automatic imprinter. The robust release process is enabled
by using the slight bending of the wafer to apply a consistent separating force.

August 2007 Patterned media looks like it is happening !!
Molecular imprints announces that they have orders and shipments that place 4 whole disk imprint tools "Imprio
1100" in 3 of the largest disk manufacturers.  The fact that a customer has ordered more than 1 system, and that
all the major players are committing significant dollars in patterned media suggests that they are getting really
serious about implementing patterned media. The  next milestone will be a multiple system order for high
volume production system.

July 2007 First automated imprint tool for the LED market
Obducat announces that they have sold one of their automated "Sindre" whole wafer imprint tools to an Asian
customer. It is generally believed that this is for patterning LED applications.  Previously, Luminus Devices and
Lumileds have disclosed that they have patterned photonic crystals structures on LED's using imprint. The
objective is  to increase light directionality and output.

January 2007 Photonics West
Impattern Solutions presented a paper focused on the impact of patterning on LED performance, a copy is
available for
download. A conference report is available, please contact Impattern Solutions

January 2007 Strategies in Light. The first fully automatic whole wafer imprint solution.
Molecular Imprints announced a product release for a whole wafer imprint tool designed for LED patterning that
uses a thin glass mold.

A complete article consolidating the Photonics West and Advanced Lithography papers are available for
download.

November 2006 NNT . A second fully automated whole wafer imprint solution has been developed.
Obducat announced their "Sindre" imprinter that uses a "one time" plastic mold that is under development.
A conference report is available for  
download.

Older  News !

Photonics West 2006 , Jan in San Jose
SPIE Microlithography 2006, Feb in San Jose
Strategies in Light 2006 , Feb in San Francisco

It has become clear that there much more capacity in roll to roll processing of imprinted structures on thin films.
  • Reflexite has thermal imprint capacity used for prisms, microlenses, and moths eye.  www.reflexite.com
  • Spectratech has thermal imprint for holograms on film. www.spectratech.com
  • Autotech, in the UK, has been purchased by McDermid and supply UV imprinted structures on thin film in
    widths over 25 inches. www.autotech.com
  • Wavefront te\chnology shows imprinted moths eye structures on their web site.   

NEXT
For more source information on each item go to References, or to the abstract book for the conference.

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