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CNF Short Course: Technology & Characterization at the Nanoscale (CNF TCN)

Tuesday - Friday, January 14-17, 2020

This intensive 3.5 day short course offered by the Cornell NanoScale Science & Technology Facility, combines lectures and laboratory demonstrations designed to impart a broad understanding of the science and technology required to undertake research in nanoscience. TCN is an ideal way for faculty, students, post docs and staff members to rapidly come up to speed in many of the technologies that users of the CNF need to employ. Members of the high tech business community will also find it an effective way to learn best practices for success in a nanofab environment.  Attendance is open to the general scientific community, but class size is limited.


The 2004 CNF NanoCourses

The CNF NanoCourses were a non-credit series of lectures in four sections, covering the basic areas required to successfully use microfabrication technology.  Emphasis was on the practical limitations and characteristics of basic fabrication processes.  This course was not intended to be redundant with regular course work in Applied Physics and Material Science.  The goal was to relate, for the benefit of new users, the working knowledge required for efficient laboratory and equipment use, as distilled from the over 100 years experience of the CNF staff.


It all starts with lithography, where the pattern is put into resist. This section covers optical lithography, including mask technology, alignment, registration and resist processing, and other lithography tools. There will be discussion on the capabilities and limitations of each technique. Basic CAD concepts and data paths will also be covered. This section is a requirement if you expect to do photolithography at CNF.

Photolithography, Videos 

1.1 Introduction, Sandip Tiwari
1.2 Photolithography: Part I ,  Part IIPart III, Garry Bordonaro
1.3 CAD Issues for Photolithography, Karlis Musa
1.4 E-Beam Lithography, Alan Bleier


Photolithography Course Notes, in PDF

Microlithography 2004, in PDF


Almost all processing is done in a vacuum. You will learn how vacuums are made and measured. You will learn why vacuums are important and how they can affect your process. Most importantly, you will learn how your samples and little things you do affect vacuum system performance.

Vacuum, Videos

2.1 Vacuum Science, Pumps and Gauges:  Part I,  Part II, Lynn Rathbun
2.2 Vacuum System Performance:  Part I,  Part II, Lynn Rathbun

Vacuum Course Notes, in PDF



Experienced users know lithography is often the easy part. Getting the pattern into your material is the hard part. This section covers the technology for both deposition and etching of thin films, including evaporation, sputtering, reactive ion etching, and chemical vapor deposition. Since there are often several ways to do a process sequence, emphasis will be placed on the differences between the techniques and resulting films, and on proper process integration.

Thin Films, Videos

3.1 Thin Film Process Integration, Michael Skvarla
3.2 Thin Film Properties: Part I,  Part II, Michael Skvarla
3.3 Evaporation, Michael Skvarla
3.4 Dry Etching, Meredith Metzler
3.5 Sputter Deposition, Jerry Drumheller
3.6 CMP, Daniel Woodie
3.7 Bonding and Embossing, Mandy Esch
3.8 Wet Etching: Part I,  Part II, Phil Infante

Thin Films Course Notes, in PDF



When your device doesn't work properly, it's time for the real work: finding out what went wrong. A variety of thin film analyzers are available for characterization of the macroscopic and microscopic properties of thin films. They almost always have 3 or 4 letter acronyms such as SAM, EDS, SEM, RBS, SIMS, AFM, etc. We will cover the characteristics and limitations of these techniques, and their use in real problems. More importantly, we will learn that analytical techniques can easily be misused if you don't understand what is really being measured. If you ask the wrong question, you are guaranteed to get the wrong answer!

Characterization, Videos

4.1 Introduction & Optical Microscopes, Lynn Rathbun
4.2 SEM, Daron Westly
4.3 Optical & Electrical, Phil Infante
4.4 Auger & Thin Film Analysis, Lynn Rathbun
4.5 AFM, John Treichler

Characterization Course Notes, in PDF


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