Block copolymers for sub-10 nm patterning

Physical Sciences : Materials and Compounds

Available for licensing


  • C. Grant Willson, Ph.D. , Chemical Engineering/Chemistry and Biochem
  • Gregory Blachut , Chemical Engineering
  • Michael Maher , University of Texas at Austin
  • Yusuke Asano , Chemical Engineering
  • Christopher Ellison, Ph.D.

Background/unmet need

Moore’s Law continues to drive the semiconductor industry to smaller and smaller line widths to enable orders-of-magnitude more circuits on a given integrated circuit ship. The long-used process of photolithography is reaching its theoretical limit, with the wavelength of light used in the process contributing to the limitation.

The semiconductor and the hard disk drive industries are in desperate need of efficient methods to pattern structures in 10nm regime and below. This material has been used to demonstrate some of the very smallest patterns that can be successfully transferred onto a substrate.

Invention Description

A block copolymer comprising a unique monomer together with a monomer containing silicon that generates well-formed lamella structures that can be used to produce patterns that are 10nm and below in width, useful for manufacturing advanced devices.


  • Formation of the smallest lamella structures known
  • Process enables nanomanufacturing on the sub-10nm scale


  •  Block copolymer that forms among the smallest lamella structures known
  • Transfer of these structures via reactive ion etching

Market potential/applications

 Semiconductor manufacturers, hard drive manufacturers

Development Stage

Commercial product

IP Status

  • 2 foreign patents application filed
  • 1 U.S. patent application filed