Fabrication of novel flexible tool for roll-to-roll embossing

A. Panwar, N. KodihalliShivaprakash, J. Zhang, J. Mead, C. Barry
University of Massachusetts Lowell,
United States

Keywords: flexible tool, roll-to-roll, embossing


Roll-to-roll embossing process aims to revolutionize the manufacturing of multifunctional polymer films with ability to process large area at a high rate with reduced cost. However, the continuous manufacturing of the films has been hindered due to lack of durable and flexible molds which can replicate micron and nano-features with reliability over several embossing cycles. In this work, we demonstrate fabrication method for the manufacturing of micron sized features on flexible polyimide (Kapton) sheet using Heidelberg direct writing and inductive coupled plasma (ICP) etching. The efficiency and reliability of flexible kapton mold was tested by embossing features on polyamide sheet using roll-to-roll process. Kapton mold replicated micron-sized features on polyamide with 100% efficiency and was durable even after numerous embossing trials.