The large interest on using femtosecond pulses to accomplish laser-materials processing is associated to the reduction of thermal effects and the ability to change material’s properties at nano/micro scale, supporting the development of all-optical devices. Variations of methods based on direct laser writing have enabled the fabrication of waveguides, couplers and splitters in glasses, as well as photonic crystals, resonators and microenvironments in polymers. Although considerable advances have been obtained on material processing with fs-laser pulses, each class of material usually requires specific experimental conditions, impairing the application of a unique methodology to explore a wide range specimen. Thus, in this study, we investigated the usage of Laser induced forward transfer (LIFT) as a general tool to process polymers, glasses and metals. The method consists on the backside irradiation of a donor substrate containing the target material to be transfer for a second substrate, called receptor, located in close proximity or in contact with the first one enabling the printing functional materials over a variety of surfaces. In order to achieve the printing of high-resolution patterns, we have applied LIFT with femtosecond laser pulses, which is advantageous for minimizing thermal effects and due to multiphoton absorption effects. As representative of each materials class, thin films of noble metals, chalcogenide glasses and conducting polymers were chosen as target materials, all being important for photonics applications. Our results showed that when applying pulses energy close to the damage threshold, the original material properties and structure are preserved on the micropatterning produced by fs-LIFT, enabling the deposition of 2D-complex geometries with thickness around 50 nm and width close to 2 μm. In addition, the deposition of nanoparticles has been observed for the fs-LIFT of metal and glass, where the former shown the surface plasmon resonance and the later displays a self-assemble pattern, explained based on the effect of laser induced periodic surface structure (LIPSS).
Juliana M. P. Almeida, Kelly T. Paula, Oriana Avila, Paulina R. Ferreira, Craig B. Arnold, and Cleber R. Mendonça, "Micropatterning of glassy, polymeric, and metallic materials by fs-LIFT (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10523, Laser 3D Manufacturing V, 105230P (Presented at SPIE LASE: January 31, 2018; Published: 14 March 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2286977.5751469771001.
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