Non-Lithographic Silicon Micromachining Using Inkjet and Chemical Etching

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Research units


We introduce a non-lithographical and vacuum-free method to pattern silicon. The method combines inkjet printing and metal assisted chemical etching (MaCE); we call this method “INKMAC”. A commercial silver ink is printed on top of a silicon surface to create the catalytic patterns for MaCE. The MaCE process leaves behind a set of silicon nanowires in the shape of the inkjet printed micrometer scale pattern. We further show how a potassium hydroxide (KOH) wet etching process can be used to rapidly etch away the nanowires, producing fully opened cavities and channels in the shape of the original printed pattern. We show how the printed lines (width 50–100 µm) can be etched into functional silicon microfluidic channels with different depths (10–40 µm) with aspect ratios close to one. We also used individual droplets (minimum diameter 30 µm) to produce cavities with a depth of 60 µm and an aspect ratio of two. Further, we discuss using the structured silicon substrate as a template for polymer replication to produce superhydrophobic surfaces.


Original languageEnglish
Article number222
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 8 Dec 2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • non-lithographic, patterning, silicon, micromachining, microfluidic

Download statistics

No data available

ID: 9774320