NanoNEMS activity focuses on research on nanomechanical and nanoelectronic structures and their application to devices used in miniaturized integrated systems. Our emphasis is on nanofabrication technologies, advanced methods of characterization by AFM (Atomic Force Microscopy) and the study of the functional properties of nanostructures. The activities are on the frontier between nanotechnology and micro-nanoelectronics, which are two of the Key Enabling Technologies (KET) and it can be framed in the lower side of Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) from 1 and 3.
Development of nanofabrication methods based on top-down techniques (advanced lithographic methods, e-beam lithography, focused ion beam, nanoimprint lithography) and bottom-up techniques (directed self-assembly of block co -polymers), merging laboratory nanofabrication processes and technology at industrial.
Study and development of nanoelectronic devices and their applications as electronic circuit elements and sensors. The research has been focused on the development of single-electron transistors (SET) for miniaturized electronic systems with a very low energy consumption, and is now oriented towards the development of technologies for semiconductor-based quantum computing.
In the field of sensing devices, the activity is focused on the development and integration of micro and nano sensor devices for medical applications, in collaborations with analytical chemistry research groups.
Study of nanoelectromechanical systems (NEMS), typically bridge structures or cantilevered beams: development of manufacturing methods, system integration and applications. Over the years, thea activity has covered the application of beams and cantilevers as nanomechanical sensors, and the fabrication of high-performance nanomechanical resonators based on silicon nanowires.
The activity is focused on the development of advanced AFM characterization methods for (i) specific properties of nanometer scale devices and system like local thermals and electrical conductivity and (ii) the characterization of electromechanical properties of nanostructures and surfaces. These methods are used for obtaining information about functional properties at the nanoscale, which is needed for the research performed by the group and for collaborations with other research groups and industries.