Postdoc: Novel hybrid materials for EUV nanolithography (in collaboration with industry)

Date posted September 5, 2019
Type Postdoc positions

In this project, structural modifications will be performed on a family of inorganic-organic compounds that are used as EUV photoresist materials. The aim is to rationalize the correlation between molecular structure and EUV-induced reactivity -e.g. influence of particle size, type of mechanisms promoted with EUV radiation in the organic shells of the particles, effect of those mechanisms in the pattern quality, etc. Ultimately, the main goal is to improve the lithographic performance of the material in terms of resolution, sensitivity, and pattern roughness by means of molecular design.

EUV lithography is a new technology that allows to fabricate processor chips with features below the 20 nm node. Achieving lower dimensions enables to increase the transistor density and thus the computing power of chip processors. EUV light is used to write patterns on a photosensitive material, a photoresist, that coats the Si-wafer. The parts of the photoresist that are exposed to the light undergo a photochemical change. By choosing the right solvent, either the unexposed or the exposed areas can be selectively washed away, thus revealing the captured pattern. Then, during an etching step, the same pattern is transferred to the Si-substrate. Although EUV lithography is already being introduced in the semiconductor industry, there is an urgent need to find photoresists that use EUV light efficiently. At ARCNL we investigate the chemical processes induced by EUV light in newly designed materials and conceive new approaches for future generations of EUV photoresist. 

In this project, systematic chemical modifications will be performed on a well-selected group of hybrid materials, in particular, metal-oxide nanoparticles and metal-oxoclusters, and the resulting materials will be tested using lithographic tools (e-beam lithography and EUV lithography). The project also involves the investigation of the chemical reactions that are induced in the material by EUV light exposure by means of several spectroscopic techniques. Some of these tasks will be carried out in synchrotron facilities.

The project will be performed in collaboration with an industrial partner, an international chemical company.

About the group

n the EUV Photoresists group we aim at the design of new photoresist materials and novel concepts for efficient nanopatterning using EUV light. For that purpose, we design new compounds, and investigate their photochemistry at molecular level. The research has a strong multidisciplinary character and is performed at the interface of ARCNL, UvA and AMOLF. Our group also keeps close communication with ASML, the manufacturer of EUV scanners in order to align our research efforts with the industrial interests. In the EUV Photoresists group we have a cooperative atmosphere and share our experiences in weekly group meetings. We support and encourage our members to have a good work-life balance.


You have a PhD degree in Chemistry or Materials Science. You know how to perform chemical reactions in a chemistry lab and have experience with characterization techniques for identification of molecular structures. You are enthusiastic about applying fundamental knowledge in a practical application and you are open to discussions in order to meet both the scientific and applied requirements of this research project. Experience with imaging techniques like scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy and/or with X-ray spectroscopy (X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy) are considered an advantage.

Terms of employment

The position is intended as full-time (40 hours / week, 12 months / year) appointment in the service of the Netherlands Foundation of Scientific Research Institutes (NWO-I) for the a duration of one year, with the possibility of extension with another year. ARCNL assists any new foreign postdoc with housing and visa applications and compensates their transport costs and furnishing expenses.

Contact info

Dr. Sonia Castellanos
Group leader of the EUV Photoresists
Phone: +31 (0)20-851 7100

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