An improved method for depositing nanoporous, conducting polymer films on miniaturized device features has been demonstrated by researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
These colorized scanning electron micrographs show a portion of the NIST microheater device before (left) and after (right) application of the sponge-like polyaniline coating
Images of two NIST microheater devices, each about 100 micrometers wide. On the left is a microheater coated with a conducting polymer, polyaniline, which is naturally green in color. On the right is an identical microheater with no coating.
Described in the April 6 issue of the Journal of the American Chemical Society,* the method may be useful as a general technique for reproducibly fabricating microdevices such as sensors for detecting toxic chemicals.
Unlike most polymers, conducting polymers have the electrical and optical properties of metals or semiconductors. These materials are of increasing interest in microelectronics because they are inexpensive, flexible and easy to synthesize.
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