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Advances in Laser Direct-Write for Digital Microfabrication

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Laser direct-write techniques based on the laser forward transfer of functional materials offer unique advantages and capabilities for the rapid prototyping of electronic, optical and sensor elements as opposed to other digital printing processes such as inkjet. Laser-based direct-write processes have been applied to the fabrication of a wide variety of microelectronic elements such as interconnects, passive components, antennas, sensors, power sources and embedded circuits. An example of these processes is the laser transfer of high viscosity metallic nano-inks to generate thin film-like structures non-lithographically. This technique, known as Laser Decal Transfer is capable of printing patterns with excellent lateral resolution and thickness uniformity such as 3-dimensional stacked assemblies, MEMS -like structures and free-standing interconnects. Overall, laser direct-write techniques are perhaps the most flexible digital microfabrication processes available in terms of materials versatility, substrate compatibility and range of speed, scale and resolution. This talk will describe the unique advantages and capabilities of these techniques, discuss their applications and explore their role in the future of printed microelectronics.

Speaker biography: Dr. Alberto Piqué is Head of the Electronic and Optical Materials & Sensors Section in the Materials Science & Technology Division at the Naval Research Laboratory. At NRL , Dr. Piqué conducts research in materials processing and characterization, thin film growth, and device fabrication. Dr. Piqué and his group have pioneered the use of laser-based direct-write techniques for the rapid prototyping of electronic, sensor and micro-power generation devices. He is currently investigating laser forward transfer techniques and other digital microfabrication methods for the non-lithographic processing of thin films, multilayers and embedded electronics. Dr. Piqué received a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland in 1996. He holds 18 U.S. patents, has co-authored over 180 articles, and co-edited 2 books and 7 conference proceedings volumes in Direct-Write Technologies and Laser Materials Processing. He is a SPIE Fellow, and a member of the board of editors for Applied Physics A: Materials Science & Processing and for the Journal of Laser Micro/Nanoengineering.

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