Vacuum Plasma Technology and Nanofabrication
We have been active in nanoscale etching of Silicon creating ultrahigh aspect ratio silicon nanowires perpendicular to the Silicon substrate using both cryogenic and nanoscale gas chopping (Bosch-like) processes. We have studied the bundling of these nanowires, their optical properties, and their application for radial or axial junction photovoltaic devices. In addition, growth of ZnO nanostructures on such nanowires was achieved towards 3D ZnO networks.
We have pioneered the plasma micro-nanotexturing technology and have designed and patented a novel related plasma reactor, which we term “nanoinhibit” reactor based on anisotropic ion-enhanced plasma etching with simultaneous controlled flux of co-sputtered etching inhibitors. The new plasma reactor is based on control of the area of electrode surface which is sputtered by ions. The control is achieved by a variable shield of specific areas of the electrode. This technology has allowed us to spin-out tens of different applications towards smart functional surfaces and devices. We are pursuing our EPO patent application on how to control the amount of texture produced during etching by changing the shielding of the biased electrode and the control in texture achieved by changing the amount of shielding.
Variable Faraday shield for a substrate holder, a clamping ring, or an electrode, or their combination in a plasma reactor