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A low-temperature synthesis coupled with mild activation produces zeolite films exhibiting low dielectric constant (low-k) matching the theoretically predicted and experimentally measured values for single crystals. This synthesis and activation method allows for the fabrication of a device consisting of a b-oriented film of the pure-silica zeolite MFI (silicalite-1) supported on a gold-coated silicon wafer. The zeolite seeds are assembled by a manual assembly process and subjected to optimized secondary growth conditions that do not cause corrosion of the gold underlayer, while strongly promoting in-plane growth. The traditional calcination process is replaced with a nonthermal photochemical activation to ensure preservation of an intact gold layer. The dielectric constant (k), obtained through measurement of electrical capacitance in a metal–insulator–metal configuration, highlights the ultralow k ≈ 1.7 of the synthetized films, which is among the lowest values reported for an MFI film. There is large improvement in elastic modulus of the film (E ≈ 54 GPa) over previous reports, potentially allowing for integration into silicon wafer processing technology.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
R.T. and N.R. contributed equally to this work. The authors acknowledge support through the Center for Gas Separations Relevant to Clean Energy Technologies, an Energy Frontier Research Center funded by the US Department of Energy, Office of Science, Basic Energy Sciences under Award No. DE-SC0001015. Parts of this work were carried out in the Characterization Facility and the Minnesota Nano Center, University of Minnesota, which received partial support from NSF through the MRSEC program. Use of the Advanced Photon Source sector 33BM was supported by the US Department of Energy, Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences under Contract No. DE-AC02-06CH11357. The computational work was supported by the US Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Division of Chemical Sciences, Geosciences and Biosciences under Award No. DEFG02-12ER16362. R.T. acknowledges financial support from the University of Magna Graecia. N.R. acknowledges financial support through the Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship granted by the University of Minnesota.
© 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim
- Low-k materials
- Synchrotron X-ray diffraction
- UV treatment
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