Patents

Primary Patents

The present invention relates to a method for producing a transducer slider. The method involves first coating a substrate with a radiation-sensitive layer and exposing the radiation-sensitive layer to radiation according to an intensity pattern. Preferably, the intensity pattern is provided using a grayscale mask. Once the image is developed into the radiation-sensitive layer, the image is transferred into the substrate to form a transducer slider having a surface profile comprising a tapered edge. In the alternative or in addition, the surface profile may comprise a rounded corner. The invention also relates to a structure for forming a transducer slider.

A process to reduce step heights in planarization of thin film carriers in an encapsulation system. The improvements include using an adhesive tape having a thinner adhesive thickness and a stiffer tape for the film sealing the encapsulant on the carrier to result in a low step height surface transition between the carrier and the cured encapsulant. The composition of the encapsulant is modified to reduce the shrinkage upon curing of the encapsulant. The encapsulant may include an absorbent that absorbs the irradiation and cause the top surface to harden first compared to the bulk of the encapsulant, and/or a gas-emitting additive that creates gaseous products that expand upon irradiation to thereby reduce the shrinkage of the encapsulant upon curing. Alternatively, irradiation at very low incidence angle relative to the top surface of the encapsulant causes the top surface to harden before the bulk of the encapsulant.

Techniques for controlling the size and/or distribution of a catalyst nanoparticles (P1, P2, , PN) on a substrate are provided. The catalyst nanoparticles comprise any species that can be used for growing a nanostructure (CNT1, CNT2, ,CNTN), such as a nanotube, on the substrate surface. Polymers are used as a carrier of a catalyst payload, and such polymers self-assemble on a substrate thereby controlling the size and/or distribution of resulting catalyst nanoparticles. Amphiphilic block copolymers are known self-assembly systems, in which chemically-distinct blocks microphase-separate into a nanoscale morphology, such as cylindrical or spherical, depending on the polymer chemistry and molecular weight.; Such block copolymers are used as a carrier of a catalyst payload, and their self-assembly into a nanoscale morphology controls size and/or distribution of resulting catalyst nanoparticles onto a substrate.

Nanostructures and methods of making the same are described. In one aspect, a film including a vector polymer comprising a payload moiety is formed on a substrate. The film is patterned. Organic components of the patterned film are removed to form a payload-comprising nanoparticle.

Contrast enhanced photolithography methods and devices formed by the same are described. In accordance with these methods, a photoresist layer is formed on a substrate. A contrast enhancing system including a solution or dispersion of a photobleachable dye is formed on the photoresist layer. The photoresist layer is exposed through an imaging pattern and through the contrast enhancing system to radiation having a wavelength between about 230 nm and about 300 nm. The contrast enhancing layer is removed, and the photoresist layer is developed to form a photoresist pattern on the substrate. The contrast enhancing system may be removed and the photoresist layer may be developed in a single process step or in different process steps.

A bilayer mask employed for lift off has a top strip which bridges between first and second bilayer portions and is completely undercut so that when one or more materials is sputter deposited the materials do not form fences abutting recessed edges of a bottom layer in undercuts below a top layer. Sacrificial protective layers are formed on a sensor and lead layers for protecting these components while overlapping portions of these materials on the top of the sensor formed during deposition can be removed by ion beam sputtering, after which the sacrificial protective layers can be removed by ion milling or reactive ion etching.

A suspended resist bridge suitable for lithographically patterning MR sensors having trackwidths narrower than 0.2 micron is fabricated using the method of the present invention. First, PMGI is spun onto a substrate to form a first thin resist layer. Next, PMMA is spun onto the first resist layer to form a second resist layer. The PMMA layer is exposed to an electron beam to pattern the trackwidth of the MR sensors. E-beam exposed PMMA is then developed in an IPA solution. The resist structure is then placed in a basic solution for dissolving PMGI, which results in a fully undercut resist bridge that is used for patterning the MR sensors.