Thursday, June 24, 2010

Research update

At IMEC this week, I've mostly been running some simulations. As I mentioned in an earlier post, we shipped some samples to IMEC from Hopkins. We're using spectroscopy tools to determine the spectral response of our nanostructures. I've been making and running some simulations on an assortment of designs and then doing the subsequent analysis. I can't really go into too much depth, so I'll just be leaving it at that.

I've also been doing some work in the clean room, fabricating some of our samples. I mentioned this last year, but the clean room here at IMEC is amazing. In the Gracias lab at JHU, we have a 14 m^2 clean room with a mask aligner, a spinner, a couple hot plates, and a wet bench. The clean rooms at IMEC are separated based on the compatibility with different wafer standards, ranging from 50 mm to 300 mm. In total, there's 5000 m^2 of clean room space, however, the 300 mm facility has been expanding, so I'm not quite sure how much additional space there is.

In terms of what type of work I'm doing, it's fairly similar to last year. The processes I'm running are nearly identical, however, the materials in which we use to fabricate our structures have changed.

Anyway, just wanted to give a quick update about what I've been up to. I definitely won't be doing any traveling during the weekdays, so it'll mostly just be updates about IMEC during the week.

A quick note. So the population of Leuven is about 90,000 and a little bit more than a third of that are students at the Catholic University of Leuven, which pretty much encompasses the entire city. Their finals have ended recently and I've slowly started to notice that the city is starting to empty a little bit. In a week or two it's suppose to be pretty empty once everyone finishes their end of the semester celebration and goes back home/on vacation.

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