A new tool allows atomic 3D printing
A new tool now rests in the 3D printing toolbox. The electron beam in a scanning transmission electron microscope has been exquisitely controlled with specially programmed electronics to tunnel into non-crystalline material and construct 3D features that are in perfect alignment with the underlying substrate (i.e., epitaxial). The result is designer materials with desirable structures, such as microchips, or materials with unique properties. Essentially, any shape can be created by exposing patterned areas to higher numbers of electrons than non-patterned areas, resulting in epitaxial 3D features down to 1-2 nanometers — less that the width of a strand of DNA.
Electron microscopes with atomically focused beams, even from older instruments, can easily be transformed from characterization tools to nanoscale fabrication platforms, complementing macroscopic 3D printing. This nanoscale fabrication tool could be used to make integrated circuits and non-equilibrium systems such as strategically concentrated impurities in crystals that lead to unique properties.
3D printing has revolutionized the way we can make and design materials. Now a team led by scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory has added another tool to the 3D printing toolbox. Combining the focused electron beam in a scanning transmission electron microscope with new electronic controls allowed the atomic sculpting of crystalline material from non-crystalline material and the construction of 3D feature sizes down to 1-2 nanometers. The crystalline features have a particular alignment with the underlying atoms, allowing mechanical and electrical properties to extend throughout the material.
The electron beam from the scanning transmission electron microscope sculpted with atomic precision a crystalline oxide feature from a non-crystalline oxide layer on a crystalline substrate. Interestingly, this non-crystalline oxide layer was made by a usually undesirable process: While preparing a sample for the electron microscope, significant redeposition of the initially crystalline substrate occurs. This redeposited material is non-crystalline and is on top of the initial crystalline film. The electron beam can then sculpt and crystallize this non-crystalline material. Also, in order to achieve this atomic manipulation, scientists had to custom program external electronics to control the trajectory of the electron beam. Electrons hitting the non-crystalline material induce growth of crystalline nanostructures.
The number of electrons hitting the sample controlled the growth rate of the 3D feature from the non-crystalline material. At lower electron beam intensities, the material can be imaged without inducing growth. Nanofabrication with atomic-level sculpting can lead to new 3D materials for integrated circuits as well as new fundamental experimental studies ranging from crystallization to diffusion that can complement modeling and simulation.
Learn more: Atomic Sculpting with a Microscope
The Latest on: 3D nanoprinting
via Google News
The Latest on: 3D nanoprinting
- Researchers integrate microfluidic system into DLW 3D printer for multimaterial nanoprinting on February 14, 2019 at 7:20 am
The team was led by Frederik Mayer at the Institute of Nanotechnology (INT) in the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). They modeled their microfluidic system around a Nanoscribe Photonic Professi... […]
- Multimaterial 3D laser microprinting using an integrated microfluidic system on February 8, 2019 at 11:17 am
Three-dimensional (3D) laser micro- and nanoprinting has become a versatile, reliable, and commercially available technology for the preparation of complex 3D architectures for diverse applications. H... […]
- New 3D nanoprinting strategy opens door to revolution in medicine, robotics on January 23, 2019 at 1:35 pm
Engineers have created the first 3D-printed fluid circuit element so tiny that 10 could rest on the width of a human hair. The diode ensures fluids move in only a single direction -- a critical featur... […]
- 3D Nanoprinting Using Charged Aerosol Focusing on December 20, 2018 at 9:35 am
In a paper entitled “Three-dimensional nanoprinting via charged aerosol focusing,” a group of researchers describes a 3D nanoprinting method to create versatile nanostructures that cannot easily be cr... […]
- Novel 3D printed polymer lenses for X-ray microscopes: highly efficient and low cost on September 6, 2018 at 12:44 am
By using an advanced 3D printing technique, a single lens can be manufactured under a minute from polymeric materials with extremely favorable X-ray optical properties, hence the costs of prototyping ... […]
- 3-D nanoprinting facilitates communication with light on April 24, 2018 at 5:27 am
Microlenses and micromirrors can be produced on optical fibers and microchips by 3-D nanoprinting. This considerably facilitates assembly of photonic systems. Credit: Philipp-Immanuel Dietrich/Florian ... […]
- Nanoscale magnetic circuit moves data in 3D on November 15, 2017 at 6:31 am
Nano-magnets in an electron microscope, along with a gas injector, were used to 3D print a suspended scaffold on a 2D silicon substrate. After 3D nano-printing, magnetic material was deposited over th... […]
- Research Team Achieves On-Demand 3D Nanoprinting of Pure Metal Structures with Direct-Writing Method on October 25, 2017 at 9:09 am
Have you ever wanted your own tiny 3D printed magic wand? While we unfortunately can’t offer you the real thing, we can tell you about a 3D shape made out of a combination of gold and carbon that look... […]
- MESO-BRAIN initiative receives €3.3million to replicate brain’s neural networks through 3D nanoprinting on August 14, 2017 at 4:30 pm
The project aims to develop three-dimensional (3D) human neural networks with specific biological architecture, and the inherent ability to interrogate the network’s brain-like activity both electroph... […]
- A European university just landed $3.3M to 3D print artificial brains for research on December 13, 2016 at 4:00 pm
In fact, it’s an intriguing new project taking place at Aston University in the U.K., which just received ... is to attempt to replicate the brain’s neural structures using 3D nanoprinting technology. ... […]
via Bing News