Micro & Nano Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS/NEMS) have a huge impact on the market in different areas ranging from consumer to automotive. Nevertheless, their real potential is largely unexplored. This because their development is a long and very expensive process, which often requires long simulation steps. Moreover, arbitrary complex 3D structures cannot be even produced with standard micro/nano-fabrication techniques.
5D NanoPrinting project aims to overcome these limitations, providing an innovative integrated technological approach, based on two-photon 3D direct printing processes. Breakthrough processes for 3D Nano- MicroDevices
(NEMS/MEMS) rapid prototyping will be developed, aspiring to become a novel gold standard for micro/nanotechnologies,
similarly to what 3D printing represented for manufacturing technologies in the last decade.
The approach will be based on new ad hoc-developed functional materials, polymerisable via two photon process,
exploiting designed/tailored functional properties. In particular, to create complete NEMS/MEMS, a set of basic properties is required, including the possibility to have graded structural, patternable, conductive, and stimuliresponsive materials. Such complex functional materials, compatible with two photon lithographic process, have been not yet demonstrated; then, new suitable materials will be developed combining synthetic and nano-technological approaches. Expected innovation brought by the project will be not limited only to material science, but a great impact at levels of process and system is also expected.
Respect to traditional micro/nano-fabrication technologies, the proposed one will be specifically used for:
- Rapid prototyping, to test new principles and configurations before final device design
- Production of 3D complex or of customizable devices (parametric devices production, e.g. multi-axial nano-force
- Production of low numbers/high added value devices (e.g. cochlear implants).