The Central Laboratory
The central research laboratory is the greatest CEZAMAT investment which has been completed in 2016. All laboratories will be equipped with state-of-the-art technological and measurement tools and will provide space with optimum technical conditions to conduct high-technology research. Depending on the needs, the laboratories offer different classes of clean rooms, high resistance to vibrations or electromagnetic radiation. Clean-rooms not only are characterized by a high class of air purity (10, 100 or 1000 according to US FED STD 209E norm), but are also equipped with all the necessary technological utilities (e.g.: ultrapure gases and chemicals distribution systems, ultrapure deionised water productions, gas and chemical wastes neutralization systems and many others).
Organization of research work and space at the Central Laboratory will be conducive to carrying out interdisciplinary research and will provide high flexibility as regards the topics of work.
The Central Research Laboratory comprises six platforms.
Modeling and simulation platform
Research programme to be implemented on the platform covers among others the following areas:
- modeling/simulating material properties (before their manufacturing),
- modeling/simulating the work of individual electronic, photonic and micromechanical devices (transistors, memory elements, sensors, vibrating beams, membranes etc.),
- modeling/simulating the course of technological processes (preliminary technology optimization),
- designing devices, circuits (e.g. electronic and/or photonic integrated circuits) and systems.
This platform will have the right software and high computation capacities, which will provide for the possibility of running several complex computational tasks
Platform of the technology of structures, devices and circuits
Clean-rooms meet the most sophisticated requirements related to the nature of the research carried out there. This does not only apply to extremely high air purity requirements, temperature and air humidity, but also to the purity of technological gases and chemical reagents. Laboratories enable the construction of various structures, devices and circuits – both electronic, photonic, as well as semi-conductor microsystems, which can be applied in different areas of life, starting from communication (information transfer and processing), through transport, security, energy harvesting and management, and finally health care.
Due to mutual incompatibility of technologies and materials the platform was divided into the following zones:
- silicon-compatible technology,
- silicon-non-compatible technologies (primarily GaN technology), nanolithography (including electron beam lithography),
Laboratories of this platform enable manufacturing of various structures, devices and circuits including: electronic, photonic, as well as MEMS/MOEMS.
Individual labs are dedicated to work with different materials for silicon and its compounds, while the alternative semiconductor lab focuses on wide bandgap semiconductors (primarily – GaN), among others for the construction of high power electronic devices and semiconductor spinotronics). Both labs for semiconductor material technologies offer the possibility of fabricating very thin layers with a predetermined chemical composition or profile, with thicknesses varying from single atomic layers up to several dozen micrometres. It will also be possible to fabricate incredibly small objects (quantum wires and dots) – so small that their size will allow for the use of their quantum nature in practical applications. Key technological devices which will enable the execution of such work at CEZAMAT include devices for molecular beam epitaxy, deposition of metaloorganic compounds (MOCVD and ALE), and for deposition of layers in the presence of high-frequency plasma using magnetrons or ultrahigh vacuum using high-energy electron beam vacuum evaporators. The growth of structures, devices, circuits and systems also requires the possibilities of defining features using lithography and controlled etching (dry and plasma-assisted). Extremely small objects will be handled with electron beam lithography (e-beam lithography) which allows to define objects on a nanometeric scale. The lab for ion implantation allows for the processes of controlled insertion of dopant atoms into solids to satisfy the needs of all kinds of technologies.
The platform will also host work on the creation of materials to build devices that use both electric charges of electrons flowing through a semiconductor (as is the case in conventional electronics), as well as their internal angular momentum, i.e. spin (which may decrease the power supply necessary for these devices).
The lab for hybrid technology, treatment and assembly of structures and circuits takes a special place on the platform. It will specialize among others in the assembly and encapsulation, as well as sealing the covers of structures and devices made in other labs, providing them with the final form of a useful element or circuit.
Platform for development of new materials
The research theme of the platform for fabrication of materials (e.g. metals or organic compounds) will focus on working out modern material technologies for the needs of micro-, nano- and optoelectronics. Due to mutual incompatibility of the researched materials the platform will comprise two divisible laboratory zones:
• development of new nanomaterials,
• fabrication and studying nanosuspensions, micro- and nanoaerozoles.
The lab for development of nanomaterials will specialize in fabrication of functional materials. They will be used in electronics and photonics, as well as in biosensors (e.g. for the purpose of discovering cancer cells). Another intriguing topic studied in this lab involves fabrication of spatial, three-dimensional metalo-organic structures (Metal-Organic-Framework i.e. MOF), which can be used both in storage, as well as dosage of gases or chemical reagents, including drugs.
The second lab will be a place to work on the fabrication and applications of nanosuspensions, micro- and nanoaerozoles (solid and liquid), as well as filtration materials. In the future the obtained results can be applied in many areas, including, among the others production of medicines. Scientists will also work here on the hydrodynamics and transport of mass in chemical microreactors.
Printed Electronics Platform
Printed electronics platform is dedicated to research and development of electronic devices and functional coatings made with diverse printing techniques. The aim is to provide a full chain of processes and activities necessary in R&D of novel printed electronic applications. The platform is composed of 4 laboratories related to:
- Printable materials fabrication (i.e. paints, inks and pastes; conductive, insulating, resistive, luminescent, electrically or chemically sensitive for chemicals, temperature, humidity etc.),
- Materials deposition with printing techniques and coating (i.a. screen-printing, ink-jet, flexographic, rotogravure, stamp printing, pneumatic or ultrasonic spray coating, aerosol jet printing),
- Bonding and hermetisation (i.a. flip-chip bonding, soldering or mount with adhesives of printed structures with other electronic components, lamination, hermetisation with coatings or parylene),
- Quality and reliability assessment (i.a. SEM, microscopy, profilometry, abrasion tests, thermal shock chamber, climate chamber, mechanical tests, electrical tests).
Printed electronics is especially interesting for mass production of disposable electronic components, sensors or for flexible electronics. Thanks to the low temperature processes various substrates may be used such as plastic foils, fabrics or papers. There is also a possibility to use rigid substrates like PCBs, metal sheets, ceramics or glass. Applications may be related i.a. to sensors, antennas, capacitors, batteries, energy harvesters, light sources, photovoltaics, light weight conduits.
Applications which are developed by the Printed Electronics Platform after slight modifications made together with the end-user, may be easily implemented in printing factories, with the use of the same machinery park.
Bio engineering platform
This platform is dedicated to three major scopes:
- design and fabrication technologies of functional materials with a high degree of biocompatibility
Work within this area will be focused on the materials used for the production of diagnostic and therapeutical equipment including catheters, implants or stents including coronary ones. The development of the effective production methods of biocompatible and hemocompatible materials (mainly polymers) will be one of our major aims.
- biological substitutes of tissues and organs with the application of biomaterials, cells and processes of biofabrication.
Research in this area will be focused on modern methods of three-dimensional structures formation with the utilization of engineering materials and natural cells. The conducted works will allow the accurate modeling of a construction and properties of the replaced tissues and organs. The applied novel biomaterials will function both as cell carriers and as bioactive scaffolds for the newly created tissues. The fabricated biostructures will be also intended to serve as 3D biological models of healthy or diseased parts of organism, which are more often necessary for the testing of novel medicines and methods of treatment.
- design and fabrication of novel devices for the medical diagnostics and environmental studies.
Our works will be focused on the fabrication of miniaturized analytical devices for the early, inexpensive and noninvasive diagnostics. Such tools will be employed mostly for the detection of cancer, degenerative or civilization diseases and allow also for the evaluation of the environment pollution. A series of novel tools including biosensors and Lab-on-Chip systems will be a cheaper and more comfortable alternative to nowadays applied analytical procedures. Among others it will contribute to the improvement of the life quality of people affected by various diseases. Among proposed solutions the electronic tattoo-based devices designed for the monitoring of human health condition will be manufactured. Such single-use electronic tools connected with other appliances such as smartphones or tablets will notably improve the comfort of patients. It will allow for noninvasive monitoring of the state of the human organism including the stress level, concentration of electrolytes, pulse measurement or the change of glucose concentration.
Platform for diagnostics and characteristics of materials, structures, devices and circuits
Every technological activity must be subjected to assessment, both in terms of the expected parameters of materials, elements and systems, as well as their reliability. Therefore, the Centre also comprises a platform for diagnostics and characterization. Thanks to measurements carried out with different methods it will be possible to optimize materials, properties and technologies for manufacturing of devices and circuits. Scientists will also work on the improvement of the existing measurement methods.
The platform will comprise the following labs:
- surface and materials properties studies (equipped among others with high-resolution electron transmission and scanning microscopes that offer the possibility of imaging surfaces in atomic scale),
- chemical composition studies (which among others will provide the following research methods: mass spectroscopy of secondary ions and x-ray electron spectroscopy),
- electrical characterization and diagnostics (highly sensitive impedance and conductivity spectroscopy measurement in a broad range of temperatures),
magnetic properties diagnostics (highly sensitive magnetometers that use super-conductive quantum interferometers),
- optical methods and optical properties diagnostics (which uses for example such methods as ellipsometry, luminescent spectroscopy or interferometry, among others for studying active micromechanical structures),static and dynamic micromechanical properties diagnostics.