The sub-µm- and nanostructured thin metal layers and dielectric surfaces exhibit manifold applications. However, the fast, easy and cost-effective fabrication is still a challenge. A possible technological solution is laser-induced self-organized processes like IPSM-LIFE (laser-induced front side etching using in-situ pre-structured metal layer). At IPSM-LIFE, a metal covered dielectric is irradiated where self-organized molten metal layer deformation process assists the structuring. A chromium-fused silica system was irradiated by a KrF excimer laser (λ = 248 nm, Δtp = 25 ns, f = 100 Hz). The IPSM-LIFE can be divided into two steps: STEP 1 and STEP 2. At IPSM – LIFE - STEP 1: The laser irradiation of thin metal layers on dielectric surfaces results in a melting and consequently in a nanostructuring process of the metal layer. The laser treatment induced a large-area modification of the sample surface. These modifications allow a macroscopic adjustment of the optical properties as well as of the water contact angle. The transmission can be variated from ~3 % to ~ 74 % for visible light and the water contact angle from < 5° to ~ 97°. The localized modification of the optical properties allows the fabrication of high-resolution greyscale images. Furthermore, the pre-structured metal layer can be used as a mask for a reactive ion beam etching (RIBE) of the SiO2. The RIBE process allows the fabrication of sub-µm glass structures with a diameter down to 30 nm and a high aspect ratio (>10) at the same time. At IPSM-LIFE - STEP 2: A subsequent high laser fluence treatment of the pre-structured metal layer results in a structuring of the underlying dielectric surface. The RIBE and IPSM-LIFE structured fused silica surface exhibits water contact angle up to 105°. The resultant surface topography was analyzed by optical (OM), atomic force (AFM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM).
P. Lorenz, I. Zagoranskiy, M. Ehrhardt, and K. Zimmer, "Laser-induced large area sub-µm and nanostructuring of dielectric surfaces and thin metal layer," Proc. SPIE 10906, Laser-based Micro- and Nanoprocessing XIII, 109060T (Presented at SPIE LASE: February 06, 2019; Published: 4 March 2019); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2510206.
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