MEMS for Nanotechnology: Top-down Perspective
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Since the invention of the transistor at Bell Labs in 1947, the semiconductor industry has achieved tremendous success in mass production of integrated circuits via planar batch processing (Brinkman et al. 1997). As predicted by Dr. R. Feynman in his classic talk in 1959 (Feynman), we have already gained the capability of writing by putting atoms down in a certain arrangement by exploring new kind of forces and new kinds of possibilities at the atomic scale. For nanoscaledevices, he envisioned photolithography and biologically inspired chemical assembly, which are now considered top-down and bottom-up approaches in nanotechnology, respectively. Massive parallel replication of electronic components using photolithography has realized the era of digital electronics in the past century. Based upon this success, revolutionary adaptation of microfabrication technology in various applications has resulted in an unprecedented amount of scientific and engineering feats in many arenas.