Industrial Liaison Office

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Fabrication of micro and nanodevices

<p>Prototype microneedles for the controlled release of pharmaceutical drugs manufactured using lithographic techniques.</p>

Prototype microneedles for the controlled release of pharmaceutical drugs manufactured using lithographic techniques.

When the penetrative power of deep X-ray lithography is combined with complementary methods of fabrication such as LIGA, it becomes possible to make lithographic incisions that can be several millimetres thick and yet exhibit detail at a submicrometric scale. This technique therefore permits the manufacture of mechanical items such as small clockwork gears, micromotor components, microactuators, microfluid circuits, and in general all the micro and nanodevices that need to be modelled in two dimensions.

 

Elettra's contribution
Elettra operates a deep lithography microfabrication beamline that has enabled it to produce compressed gas directional propulsion units for a microsatellite used in an International Space Station mission. In another space industry application it produced a microturbine to control the attitude of a satellite.
A combination of X-rays and UV lithographies was used to create a prototype system for the controlled release of pharmaceutical drugs, in which a micropump was linked to a set of microneedles. This device promises to be valuable in the care of patients suffering from chronic illnesses such as diabetes, or for postoperative treatment.
Similar techniques, in which the construction material is exposed to X-rays at various angles of incidence, have also been employed to create optoelectronic devices known as photonic crystals, which are used as highly efficient wave guides for light rays.
When X-ray lithography is combined with techniques such as chemical attack and ion lithography, more varied forms of three-dimensional devices can be created.

 

Facility: LILIT and DXRL Beamlines
Bibliography:
Micropatterned Dry Electrodes for Brain-Computer Interface; M. Matteucci, R. Carabalona, M. Casella, E. Di Fabrizio, F. Gramatica, M. Di Rienzo, E. Snidero, L. Gavioli and M. Sancrotti; Microelectronic Engineering; 84,p. 1737, 2007.