Three-Dimensional Etching of Silicon for the Fabrication of Low-Dimensional and Suspended Devices

Sameer Walavalkar

Sameer Walavalkar

Post-doctoral Scholar

California Institute of Technology

Dr. Sameer Walavalkar is a post-doctoral scholar working in the Scherer nanofabrication group at Caltech in Pasadena, CA. His field of expertise is in the top-down fabrication and testing of silicon devices with active regions in the sub-10 nm range. He obtained his PhD in Applied Physics from Caltech in 2011 and his dissertation was titled, “Optical, Mechanical and Electronic Properties of Etched Silicon Nanopillars.” The research focused on combining aspects of top-down and bottom-up fabrication methods to create and test novel devices. Specifically, he developed a CMOS compatible mask and etch to fabrication silicon nanostructures with dimensions as small as 10 nm and aspect ratios as high as 100:1. Furthermore he elucidated the fundamentally altered behavior of silicon devices at these length scales—most notably demonstrating, with the use of a self-terminating oxidation step, that silicon can become an efficient visible and near-IR light emitter when constrained to nanoscopic dimensions. His research is currently focused on using geometry to create unique silicon bandstructures and the use of etched silicon structures as templates for plasmonic devices and their use in bio-imaging and biosensors.

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