Electron-Beam Patterning of Vapor-Deposited Solid Anisole

Ding Zhao*, Bingdong Chang, Marco Beleggia

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


The emerging ice lithography (IL) nanofabrication technology differs from conventional electron-beam lithography by working at cryogenic temperatures and using vapor-deposited organic molecules, such as solid water and alkanes, as e-beam resists. In this paper, we systematically investigate e-beam patterning of frozen anisole and assess its performance as an e-beam resist in IL. Dose curves reveal that anisole has a very low contrast of ∼1, with a very weak dependence on primary beam energy in the investigated range of 5-20 keV. The minimum line width of 60 nm is attainable at 20 keV, limited by stage vibration in our apparatus. Notably, various solid states of anisole have been observed and we can control the deposited anisole from crystalline to amorphous state by decreasing the deposition temperature. The critical temperature for forming an amorphous film is 130 K in the vacuum of a microscope chamber. Smooth patterns with a surface roughness of ∼0.7 nm are achieved in the as-deposited amorphous solid anisole. As a proof of principle of 3D fabrication, we finally fabricate nanoscale patterns on exotic silicon micropillars with a high aspect ratio using this resist.
Original languageEnglish
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)6436-6441
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Electron-beam patterning
  • Electron-beam lithography
  • Ice lithography
  • Solid anisole
  • Cryogenic temperature

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