ABSTRACT: Besides imaging and characterization, proximal probes are proposed to be use as a three-dimensional (3D) nanoscale manipulation and manufacturing tool In this work. We propose 3D nanoscale pulling of liquid polymer micro/nanofibers by precise positioning of atomic force microscope (AFM) nanoprobes and control of polymer solidification. An AFM probe is used to pull or extrude thermoset or thermoplastic polymers precisely to fabricate 3D polymer micro/nano-fiber structures. A liquid polymer fiber bridge between the probe tip and a substrate is maintained when pulling the probe from the surface with controlled speed and position. We present results of our pulling experiments in vertical, horizontal and arbitrary 3D pulling directions for PMMA polymer fibers. Implications and future directions are discussed. This micro/nano-fiber pulling technology would have wide applications in nano-circuit interconnects, prototyping novel nano-electronic devices, 3D polymer fiber based nano-actuators, photonic devices, and novel smart sensors and materials.
Robotics and Automation, 2004. Proceedings. ICRA '04. 2004 IEEE International Conference on;