Universal Direct Pattering of Colloidal Quantum Dots by (Extreme) Ultraviolet and Electron Beam Lithography
Colloidal quantum dots have found many applications and patterning them on micro- and nanoscale would open a new dimension of tunability for the creation of smaller scale (flexible) electronics or nanophotonic structures. Here we present a simple, general, one-step top-down patterning technique for colloidal quantum dots by means of direct optical or electron beam lithography. We find that both photons and electrons can induce a solubility switch of both PbS and CdSe quantum dot films. The solubility switch can be ascribed to cross-linking of the organic ligands, which we observe from exposure with deep-UV photons (5.5 eV) to extreme-UV photons (91.9 eV), and low-energy (3–70 eV) as well as highly energetic electrons (50 keV). The required doses for patterning are relatively low and feature sizes can be as small as tens of nanometers. The luminescence properties as well as carrier lifetimes remain similar after patterning.