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Fall 2011 Short-Course Event: Special Topics in Micro- and Nanotechnology


Please join us for an exciting short-course event this fall! The event will feature a box lunch with a keynote address, followed by three, forty-five minute class sessions. Three parallel courses are offered during each time slot. Scheduled courses include:

  • Overview of Focused Ion Beam Techniques (Dr. Keana Scott, NIST)
  • Electrochemical Actuators for BioMEMS (Prof. Elisabeth Smela, University of Maryland)
  • Ethical Influence: How to Get What you Want (Dr. Mark Happel, JHU/APL)
  • Hands-on Flip-Chip Bonding (Andrea Pais and Vindhya Reddy, SB Microsystems)
  • Bottom-up Nanofabrication (Dr. Jason Benkoski, JHU/APL)
  • Overview of Graphene Properties and Processing (Dr. Janice Guikema, Johns Hopkins University)
  • Rapid Prototyping for Interfacing to Micro/Nano Devices (Dr. Mike Rooney, JHU/APL)
  • Process Flow Design for Top-Down Nanofabrication (Mr. Vincent Luciani, NIST)



Date: Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Venue: Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (JHU/APL)  Kossiakoff Center classrooms




$45  small business (reflects a 50% subsidy by the Maryland Partnership for Workforce Quality for small business attendees)

$45  students




Seminar Sponsored in Part by the Maryland Partnership for Workforce Quality.


12:00-12:30pm – registration and networking

12:30-1:15pm – box lunch with Keynote Speaker Eric Benfer

A Look Under the Hood-  Stuff You Gotta Know about iPads and Tablets

Eric Benfer is the Macintosh Services Manager for The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory IT department. He is a subject matter expert on Mac OS X and iOS.  Eric will provide an engaging talk with the insider tips we need to know.

1:20-2:05pm – Session #1

1A: Overview of Focused Ion Beam Techniques

1B: Bottom-up Nanofabrication

1C: State-of-the-Art in Rapid Prototyping Technologies

2:10-2:55pm – Session #2

2A: Flip-Chip Bonding (classroom session; no limit on enrollment)

2B: Ethical Influence: How to Get What you Want

2C: Electrochemical Actuators for BioMEMS

3:00-3:45pm – Session #3

3A: Flip-Chip Bonding (hands-on session at SB Microsystems; limited to first 8 registrants)

3B: Overview of Graphene Properties and Processing

3C: Process Flow Design for Top-down Nanofabrication



Course Descriptions

1A. Overview of Focused Ion Beam Techniques – Dr. Keana Scott, NIST


Focused Ion Beam (FIB) instruments have been around for more than twenty years now and widely used in the semiconductor industry and materials science research.  However, the recent availability of dual platform (focused ion beam and scanning electron beam) instruments and the advances in the control and processing software for these instruments have led to a widespread adoption of FIB technology in many new application areas.  A brief overview of the FIB and FIB SEM technology, instrumentation and applications will be presented, including some discussions on the capabilities and limitations of the FIB and FIB SEM techniques in general, brief descriptions of current commercially available tools and several FIB application examples.


Keana Scott is a Supervisory Physical Scientist in the Surface and Microanalysis Science Division at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).  Keana received a BS in Engineering and Applied Sciences from Caltech, a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh and an MS in Biotechnology from The Johns Hopkins University.  After developing automation engineering solutions for Celera Genomics during the Human Genome Project, Keana led a group of scientists involved in computational chemistry and proteomics at Celera prior to joining NIST in 2006.  Keana currently works on multi-modal bioimaging technique development and the microanalysis of biological materials using electron and ion beams.

1B. Bottom-up Nanofabrication – Dr. Jason Benkoski, JHU/APL


Self-assembly is the spontaneous organization of small building blocks into complex structures where the blueprint for the final structure is embedded within the design of the building blocks themselves. Self-assembly is technologically important because of its ability to create nanostructured materials that would not otherwise be possible to make using “top-down” photolithography methods or similar conventional techniques. Self-assembled structures are characterized by excellent short-range order, poor long-range order, hierarchical organization over multiple length scales, and fractal morphologies. Not coincidentally, these structures resemble natural materials like bone and wood, since biological materials are also made by self-assembly. In this seminar we will explore a number of examples illustrating the relevance of this technology for those new to the subject. It will provide a quick primer on the key concepts needed to appreciate how the process works, and when it is most beneficial to use “bottom-up” self-assembly in the context of conventional, semiconductor microfabrication and similar “top-down” technologies.


Dr. Benkoski received his Ph.D. in 2003 under the supervision of Prof. Ed Kramer, where he studied “The Molecular Mechanisms of Polymer Fracture.”  Shortly thereafter he received a fellowship from the NSF to develop a platform for light-regulated, reusable protein sensors. In 2005 received a National Research Council Fellowship to develop novel processing routes for creating hierarchical biomimetic topologies via self-assembly at photocrosslinkable oil/water interfaces.  He now serves as a Senior Scientist in the Milton S. Eisenhower Research Center at JHU/APL where he heads a research program devoted to the development of nanoscale mechanical actuators built from the self-assembly of Co nanoparticles. He also leads a program funded by ONR to develop Polyfibroblast, a self-healing paint that provides galvanic protection.  His interests include self-assembly, biomimetic materials, and stimulus-response materials.

1C. State-of-the-Art in Rapid Prototyping Technologies – Dr. Mike Rooney, JHU/APL


Rapid Prototype technologies, also known as 3D Printing or Manufacturing, has been around for 20+ years now, but the number of technologies and materials has exploded in the just the last few.  A review of the current state-of-the-art in polymer, metal and ceramic RP technologies will be presented.  While a comprehensive list of system manufacturers and materials will be presented and some discussed in detail, the list grows nearly daily (particularly for materials).  The technologies are at the point where custom materials are becoming the norm, which is where the evolution for micro and nano-particle enhancements has already begun.


Dr. Michael Rooney is a Materials Researcher with over 25 years experience in characterizing and applying a broad range of materials and their associated fabrication processes.  With a Masters and PhD in Materials Science & Engineering from Johns Hopkins University, he has worked at the JHU Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) for the last 15 years as the Supervisor of the Applied Materials/Materials Engineering Section.

Mr. Robert Matteson and Mr. Paul Biermann, Materials & Process Engineers in the Composites/Polymers Fabrication area, also plan to help present the options, opportunities and future of the various processes to be discussed.

2A and 3A. Hands-on Flip-Chip Bonding – Vindhya Reddy and Andrea Pais, SB Microsystems

“Flip-Chip Bonding”, also called “Direct Chip Attach” is one of the methods of interconnecting devices.  Typically, electrical connection of face-down (flipped) electronic components onto carriers or circuit boards are made by means of conductive bumps on the chip bond-pads.
This short course on flip chip bonding will comprise of two sessions. During the first session held at JHU, we will describe what flip chip bonding is, its applications in various fields and how it compares to other types of bonding. The course will mainly focus on its wide range of applications in the industry, including some examples from our own experience. During the second session, we will hold a hands-on demo at our SB Microsystems office in Columbia, MD.

Andrea Pais and Vindhya Reddy are Research Engineers at SB Microsystems.  Andrea received her MS Degree in Electrical Engineering from University of Florida in 2009 and Vindhya received her BS Degree in Electrical Engineering from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor in 2010. At SB Microsystems, their work mainly consists of creating process development and packaging solutions for customers.  Andrea leads the process engineering team and their interest is not just in building circuits but in miniaturizing complete systems onto silicon: be it fluidic or mechanical components, sensors, circuits- anything you can imagine.

2B. Ethical Influence: How to Get What you Want – Dr. Mark Happel, JHU/APL

2C. Electrochemical Actuators for BioMEMS – Prof. Elisabeth Smela, University of Maryland


This short course will provide an overview of electrochemical actuator technology, including the motivation and challenges, applications, and actuation mechanism. The course will focus on conjugated polymer actuators, which have been fully integrated into standard microfabrication processes. We will begin with a brief introduction to electrochemistry and the conjugated polymer materials that are used. The applications that will be covered include cell manipulation, microfluidic valving, neural probe steering, and drug delivery. Methods for depositing and patterning the materials will be presented, followed by how they are actuated. Finally, their performance metrics will be reviewed.


Elisabeth Smela is a Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Maryland (UMD), College Park. She received a BS in physics from MIT and a PhD in electrical engineering from the University of Pennsylvania. She began working with conjugated polymers in 1992 at the University of Linköping, Sweden, where she made the first microfabricated actuators. She continued working in this area at Risø National Laboratory in Denmark and then as Vice President of Research and Development at Santa Fe Science and Technology, resulting in three publications in Science. She has been involved in basic studies of these actuators, performing both experiments and modeling, as well as technology development. She is the author of several reviews and book chapters on this topic, has given numerous invited lectures, and has received the engineering school’s Kent teaching award.

3B. Overview of Graphene Properties and Processing – Dr. Janice Guikema, Johns Hopkins University


Graphene is often described as a new “wonder” material.  Its serendipitous discovery in 2004 (for which Geim & Novoselov were awarded the 2010 Nobel prize) has ignited intense interest ranging from fundamental science to applied technology.  The thinnest material in the world, graphene is a two-dimensional sheet of carbon atoms only one atom thick. This elegantly simple material has exceptional electronic, optical, thermal and mechanical properties.  In this course I will introduce graphene’s properties and a number of promising applications such as flexible transparent electrodes, next-generation transistors, energy applications and sensors.  I will also discuss the primary methods for large-scale production of graphene, as well as current challenges and limitations in making and using graphene.


Janice Wynn Guikema is an associate research scientist in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins University.  Currently her primary research area is graphene.  She makes graphene (primarily by mechanical exfoliation and chemical vapor deposition methods), then fabricates and studies graphene devices such as sensors.  Janice received her Ph.D. in physics (experimental condensed matter) from Stanford University in 2004, returned to her alma mater Cornell University for a postdoc, and taught at Texas A&M University prior to coming to Johns Hopkins in 2008.

3C. Process Flow Design for Top-Down Nanofabrication – Mr. Vincent Luciani, NIST


Successful top-down nanofabrication requires not only a good idea, but also attention to device design, process limitations, and the sequence of processing steps. First pass success in fabricating prototypes is an important measure of success in research or the fast paced world of product development and the preparation and documentation of your process plan will determine your chances for success. In this class, we will discuss how to design a process – including deposition, lithography, etching and chemical cleans- that will maximize device success and yield. The discussion will be in the context of NIST’s Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology NanoFab facility, a user facility available to academic, industrial, and government researchers. The CNST has extensive capabilities, including electron beam lithography, focused ion beam, nano-imprint and laser lithography.


Vincent Luciani is the CNST NanoFab Manager. He joined CNST in November of 2008 with over 30 years of private industry experience in semiconductor and nanotechnology process development and project management. Vincent began his career at Solarex Corp. producing photovoltaic solar cells. He then joined the Bendix Advanced Technology Center, developing electronic and nanotechnology devices and processes in a variety of semiconductor material systems, including silicon, gallium arsenide, indium phosphide and lithium niobate. When Bendix became part of Allied-Signal, Vincent went on to lead their advanced process development team, and was awarded an Allied-Signal Premier Achievement Award for excellence in Engineering. Prior to joining NIST, he led the process and product engineering teams at Covega Corporation, developing and ramping up the production of novel indium phosphide photonic devices. Vincent is an expert in Project Management, with a Six Sigma Blackbelt, and holds five patents in semiconductor and nanofabrication technology.