The Nanoscribe Photonic Professional GT2 is a microfabrication unit based on two-photon lithography (TPL). TPL utilizes two-photon absorption to only cure a tuned photo-resin within a confined spot, acting as a voxel (3D-pixel) for an object built-up with a translation of this volume. With a slicing and hatching strategy known from laser-based stereolithography, this uniquely curing mechanism a 2 – 4 magnitudes smaller length scales, compared to standard resin-based 3D printers, are accessible. Thus, complex 3D polymer structures with feature sizes down to 160 nm can be printed, although stable free-standing structures need larger dimensions (~2 voxel diameters).
The employed objective defines the smallest printable volume (voxel size). Different feature sets are available, optimized for manufacturing targeted object size ranges. The small-feature set allows for manufacturing structures with sub-micrometer features, while the large-feature set is limited to a few microns resolution but enables fast printing speed and higher volumes.
The device typically operates in immersion mode, where the resin pool resides between the substrate and the objective. Conveniently, a built-in feature can automatically find the interface towards the substrate due to the refractive index change. With predefined processing recipes, standard resins enable straightforward printing on various substrates. Otherwise, custom resins and substrates can be used due to the system's open architecture, although parameter tuning may be required.
The camera live-view through the objective enables supervision of the printing process and enables precise positioning of the print on predefined spots on a custom substrate, for example. The model information can originate from a CAD file or be manually defined through the printer's scripting language. Especially the combination of both opens many possibilities. Further information and current application fields can be found on the homepage of the device manufacturer.
Fabrication and testing of micro- and nanostructured composites produced by means of laser processing/writing
If you are interested in using the instrument please contact Christoph Gammer (oeaw.ac.at) or Daniel Kiener (unileoben.ac.at)
The Infrastructure was funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG) in the framework of the F&E infrastructure program SmartNanoTop (ffg.at).