Magneto-Optical Thin Film – Photocrosslinking, Patterning

Magneto-Optical (MO) effects are phenomena that modify the light polarization according to an external magnetic field applied to an MO active material.

Amongst the most attractive properties of the magnetic transparent compounds are those related to the magneto-optical (MO) effects and their scientific and industrial applications in areas such as data storage, three-dimensional (3D) imaging, magnonics, sensing, and photonics. MO active materials are ubiquitous in photonic devices. However, they still need to improve integrated photonic platforms. However, they are essential components for optical communication systems (optical isolators, optical circulators, optical switches, magneto-optic (MO) modulators) and high-performance magnetic field sensors.

DUV photolithography (193 nm) is an extremely interesting tool for micro and nano-structure thin films with magneto-optical properties. Starting from solutions whose composition can be easily adapted to modulate the properties, the DUV photolithography step allows cross-linking of the material and its structure at submicrometer scales. No additional step (in particular, no thermal annealing) is required to obtain the magneto-optical properties. It opens perspectives for integrating these materials in glass, silicon, and ton plastic devices.

Researchers aim to investigate the photocrosslinking mechanism involved in the nanocomposite and further exemplify the application for photopatterning in the sol–gel matrix they developed. The optimized synthesis of CoFe2O4 nanoparticles and hybrid sol–gel host matrix is first described. Conditions are defined to reach a high concentration of MNPs. The kinetic of photopolymerization is then studied by Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy to investigate the photoinduced mechanisms allowing the photocrosslinking of the material.

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