Real 3-D sub-νm lithography was performed with two-photon polymerization (2PP) using inorganic-organic hybrid polymer (ORMOCER®) resins. The hybrid polymers were synthesized by hydrolysis/polycondensation reactions (modified sol-gel synthesis) which allows one to tailor their material properties towards the respective applications, i.e., dielectrics, optics or passivation. Due to their photosensitive organic functionalities, ORMOCER®s can be patterned by conventional photo-lithography as well as by femtosecond laser pulses at 780 nm. This results in polymerized (solid) structures where the non-polymerized parts can be removed by conventional developers.
ORMOCER® structures as small as 200 nm or even below were generated by 2PP of the resins using femtosecond laser pulses. It is demonstrated that ORMOCER®s have the potential to be used in components or devices built up by nm-scale structures such as, e.g., photonic crystals. Aspects of the materials in conjunction to the applied technology are discussed.