Large-scale fabrication of free-standing and sub-μm PDMS through-hole membranes

Hai Le-The (Corresponding Author), Martijn Tibbe, Joshua Loessberg-Zahl, Marciano Palma Do Carmo, Marinke Van Der Helm, Johan Bomer, Albert Van Den Berg, Anne Leferink, Loes Segerink, Jan Eijkel

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Abstract

Free-standing polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) through-hole membranes have been studied extensively in recent years for chemical and biomedical applications. However, robust fabrication of such membranes with sub-μm through-holes, and at a sub-μm thickness over large areas is challenging. In this paper, we report a robust and simple method for large-scale fabrication of free-standing and sub-μm PDMS through-hole membranes, combining soft-lithography with reactive plasma etching techniques. First, arrays of sub-μm photoresist (PR) columns were patterned on another spin-coated sacrificial PR layer, using conventional photolithography processes. Subsequently, a solution of PDMS:hexane at a 1:10 ratio was spin-coated over these fabricated arrays. The cured PDMS membrane was etched in a plasma mixture of sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) and oxygen (O2) to open the through-holes. This PDMS membrane can be smoothly released with a supporting ring by completely dissolving the sacrificial PR structures in acetone. Using this fabrication method, we demonstrated the fabrication of free-standing PDMS membranes at various sub-μm thicknesses down to 600 ± 20 nm, and nanometer-sized through-hole (810 ± 20 nm diameter) densities, over areas as large as 3 cm in diameter. Furthermore, we demonstrated the potential of the as-prepared membranes as cell-culture substrates for biomedical applications by culturing endothelial cells on these membranes in a Transwell-like set-up.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7711-7718
Number of pages8
JournalNanoscale
Volume10
Issue number16
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Apr 2018

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Polydimethylsiloxane
Membranes
Fabrication
Photoresists
Sulfur Hexafluoride
Sulfur hexafluoride
baysilon
Plasma etching
Endothelial cells
Hexanes
Photolithography
Acetone
Hexane
Cell culture
Lithography
Oxygen
Plasmas
Substrates

Cite this

@article{21921d45ca774ee581c4fe5138ca8914,
title = "Large-scale fabrication of free-standing and sub-μm PDMS through-hole membranes",
abstract = "Free-standing polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) through-hole membranes have been studied extensively in recent years for chemical and biomedical applications. However, robust fabrication of such membranes with sub-μm through-holes, and at a sub-μm thickness over large areas is challenging. In this paper, we report a robust and simple method for large-scale fabrication of free-standing and sub-μm PDMS through-hole membranes, combining soft-lithography with reactive plasma etching techniques. First, arrays of sub-μm photoresist (PR) columns were patterned on another spin-coated sacrificial PR layer, using conventional photolithography processes. Subsequently, a solution of PDMS:hexane at a 1:10 ratio was spin-coated over these fabricated arrays. The cured PDMS membrane was etched in a plasma mixture of sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) and oxygen (O2) to open the through-holes. This PDMS membrane can be smoothly released with a supporting ring by completely dissolving the sacrificial PR structures in acetone. Using this fabrication method, we demonstrated the fabrication of free-standing PDMS membranes at various sub-μm thicknesses down to 600 ± 20 nm, and nanometer-sized through-hole (810 ± 20 nm diameter) densities, over areas as large as 3 cm in diameter. Furthermore, we demonstrated the potential of the as-prepared membranes as cell-culture substrates for biomedical applications by culturing endothelial cells on these membranes in a Transwell-like set-up.",
author = "Hai Le-The and Martijn Tibbe and Joshua Loessberg-Zahl and {Palma Do Carmo}, Marciano and {Van Der Helm}, Marinke and Johan Bomer and {Van Den Berg}, Albert and Anne Leferink and Loes Segerink and Jan Eijkel",
year = "2018",
month = "4",
day = "28",
doi = "10.1039/c7nr09658e",
language = "English",
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pages = "7711--7718",
journal = "Nanoscale",
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Large-scale fabrication of free-standing and sub-μm PDMS through-hole membranes. / Le-The, Hai (Corresponding Author); Tibbe, Martijn; Loessberg-Zahl, Joshua; Palma Do Carmo, Marciano; Van Der Helm, Marinke; Bomer, Johan; Van Den Berg, Albert; Leferink, Anne; Segerink, Loes; Eijkel, Jan.

In: Nanoscale, Vol. 10, No. 16, 28.04.2018, p. 7711-7718.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Large-scale fabrication of free-standing and sub-μm PDMS through-hole membranes

AU - Le-The, Hai

AU - Tibbe, Martijn

AU - Loessberg-Zahl, Joshua

AU - Palma Do Carmo, Marciano

AU - Van Der Helm, Marinke

AU - Bomer, Johan

AU - Van Den Berg, Albert

AU - Leferink, Anne

AU - Segerink, Loes

AU - Eijkel, Jan

PY - 2018/4/28

Y1 - 2018/4/28

N2 - Free-standing polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) through-hole membranes have been studied extensively in recent years for chemical and biomedical applications. However, robust fabrication of such membranes with sub-μm through-holes, and at a sub-μm thickness over large areas is challenging. In this paper, we report a robust and simple method for large-scale fabrication of free-standing and sub-μm PDMS through-hole membranes, combining soft-lithography with reactive plasma etching techniques. First, arrays of sub-μm photoresist (PR) columns were patterned on another spin-coated sacrificial PR layer, using conventional photolithography processes. Subsequently, a solution of PDMS:hexane at a 1:10 ratio was spin-coated over these fabricated arrays. The cured PDMS membrane was etched in a plasma mixture of sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) and oxygen (O2) to open the through-holes. This PDMS membrane can be smoothly released with a supporting ring by completely dissolving the sacrificial PR structures in acetone. Using this fabrication method, we demonstrated the fabrication of free-standing PDMS membranes at various sub-μm thicknesses down to 600 ± 20 nm, and nanometer-sized through-hole (810 ± 20 nm diameter) densities, over areas as large as 3 cm in diameter. Furthermore, we demonstrated the potential of the as-prepared membranes as cell-culture substrates for biomedical applications by culturing endothelial cells on these membranes in a Transwell-like set-up.

AB - Free-standing polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) through-hole membranes have been studied extensively in recent years for chemical and biomedical applications. However, robust fabrication of such membranes with sub-μm through-holes, and at a sub-μm thickness over large areas is challenging. In this paper, we report a robust and simple method for large-scale fabrication of free-standing and sub-μm PDMS through-hole membranes, combining soft-lithography with reactive plasma etching techniques. First, arrays of sub-μm photoresist (PR) columns were patterned on another spin-coated sacrificial PR layer, using conventional photolithography processes. Subsequently, a solution of PDMS:hexane at a 1:10 ratio was spin-coated over these fabricated arrays. The cured PDMS membrane was etched in a plasma mixture of sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) and oxygen (O2) to open the through-holes. This PDMS membrane can be smoothly released with a supporting ring by completely dissolving the sacrificial PR structures in acetone. Using this fabrication method, we demonstrated the fabrication of free-standing PDMS membranes at various sub-μm thicknesses down to 600 ± 20 nm, and nanometer-sized through-hole (810 ± 20 nm diameter) densities, over areas as large as 3 cm in diameter. Furthermore, we demonstrated the potential of the as-prepared membranes as cell-culture substrates for biomedical applications by culturing endothelial cells on these membranes in a Transwell-like set-up.

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U2 - 10.1039/c7nr09658e

DO - 10.1039/c7nr09658e

M3 - Article

VL - 10

SP - 7711

EP - 7718

JO - Nanoscale

JF - Nanoscale

SN - 2040-3364

IS - 16

ER -