A high-speed nonsilver lithographic system has been demonstrated for direct laser imaging. The system is negative working and is based on a photoinsolubilization of a polymer coating by redox amplification. The essential components consist of a cobalt(III)amine (Coen), a redox transfer ligand (PAN), a light-sensitive quinone (Q), and a polysulfonamide binder (A6). On exposure, the quinone photogenerates a hydroquinone reducing agent. On heating, the hydroquinone reduces Coen to produce Co(II). PAN then complexes this Co(II) to form CO(II) PAN which, in turn, reduces more Coen. This resulting reaction produces Co(III)PAN and more Co(II) centers, which in the presence of excess PAN and Coen continues the cycle, giving photographically useful amplification.
Polysulfonamide (A6) is an excellent medium with optimal acidity and thermomechanical properties to promote this chemistry. It provides toughness required for a dry-film photoresist, ink receptivity for lithographic plate, and aqueous development for both applications.
Exposure to an Argon ion laser (4881514nm) at dose O.5-lmj/cm2 followed by heating (5 sec/120 C hot plate) produced high-density images that were insolubilized in an aqueous alkaline developer to give final nonswell images of excellent quality.