Use of an Elastomeric Donor for LIFT of Metal Foils
Journal Article - Open Access
NAVAL RESEARCH LAB WASHINGTON DC WASHINGTON United States
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The use of laser induced forward transfer LIFT techniques for printing materials for sensor and electronics applications is growing as additive manufacturing expands into the fabrication of functional structures. In many LIFT applications, a sacrificial or donor layer is required despite the fact that it must be replenished after being completely vaporized when illuminated with a laser pulse. A better solution would be to employ a reusable donor layer to which the transferable ink or metal foil is attached and then released by a laser pulse but without the donor undergoing damage, therefore allowing repeated use for subsequent transfers. In this work, we describe the use of an elastomeric donor layer based on polydimethylsiloxane or PDMS for LIFT with UV lambda 355 nm laser pulses. Metal foils of varying size and thickness were attached to PDMS release layers initially spin-coated onto glass substrates and then printed onto silicon substrates by LIFT. A parametric study involving both the laser pulse intensity and the gap between the donor substrate and receiving substrate was conducted to determine placement accuracy as a function of laser fluence and gap distance. The effect of these two parameters, fluence and gap is discussed for the transfers of 25 and 50 mu m thick copper foils, together with the applications of this technique for the printing of more complex foil shapes of metals and other materials.
- Metallurgy and Metallography
- Electrical and Electronic Equipment
- Laminates and Composite Materials