Generation of Sub-micrometer-scale Patterns by Successive Miniaturization Using Hydrogels


  • This work was supported by the DST Unit on Nanosciences at IIT Kanpur and by a Research Initiation grant to A.G. by the Research office of Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. A.G. acknowledges that the nucleation of this idea occurred in the laboratory of Prof. Manoj K. Chaudhury at Lehigh University.


original image

Macroscopic to sub-micrometer-scale patterns and objects are generated by successive miniaturization of an original pattern using the volume-shrinking characteristics of hydrogels. A pattern from a stamp is transferred onto a hydrogel block, which is then dried to shrink its size. The shrunk pattern is subsequently transferred to a polymer stamp, which can be used as master for the next cycle. The figure shows the shrinking of the patterns of a CD (left) and a DVD (right).