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Directed Aggregation of Nanoparticles

(Funding: National Science Foundation )

The judicious application of stress fields is a demonstrated method of controlling the location of nanoscale aggregates of dopant atoms embedded in a crystalline host material. Precise position control is needed to drive advances in nanofabrication capability, for example in optoelectronic nanostructures and in high density patterned media for data storage. As part of an effort to quantify the dynamics and energetics of stress-induced nanoparticles, we are developing experimental techniques to create nanostructured materials in desired arrangements. The basic experimental principle is to apply patterned external stresses to a heated thin film sample supersaturated with another species, cool the alloy film, and characterize the resultant film structure. The dopant atoms and precipitate clusters are expected to migrate to and aggregate in regions of low stress, and upon cooling clusters will be frozen in desired locations.


© Nanoscale Engineering Laboratory Lukes Research Group