Researchers from the Air Force Research Laboratory and the University of Arizona collaborated to demonstrate the first-ever fabrication of DNA biopolymer nanostructures via nanoimprint lithography, a technology of merit for low-cost, portable (in-field) production of chemical and optical sensors, high-speed communications, and electrical device components with enhanced performance for warfighters.
Compared to their inorganic counterparts, biopolymer-based electro-optic devices are less expensive and offer potentially better performance as a result of their lower losses and operating powers in communications and sensing devices. Based on the successful outcome of this technology demonstration, AFRL has invested in a state-of-the-art nanoimprint lithography system that will enable EO device fabrication for both biomaterials and inorganic materials.
Researchers demonstrated the first-ever nanoimprint-lithography-based fabrication of biopolymer nanostructures. The nanolithography technology will enable low-cost, portable production of communications and sensing devices. Pictured are atomic-force microscope images of a nanoimprinted DNA biopolymer; the diameter of each pillar is 70 nm, and the height is >150 nm.
Credit: AFRL image
Source: AFRL news release by Dr. Emily Heckman