2nd phase

Type: 1.2.1. specific support goal "To Increase the Private Sector Investments R&D"; measure 1.2.1.2. "Support for Improvement of Technology Transfer System"

Agreement No: KC-PI-2020/26

Duration: 01.12.2020 -30.09.2022

Project Leader: Dr.phys. Jānis Teteris, Institute of Solid State Physics, University of Latvia

Total budget: 305 000 EUR

ISSP UL budget: 30 000 EUR

Project description:

Purpose of the project. The studies of photoinduced mass transfer processes in thin films of amorphous chalcogenide and azo-benzene organic compounds and development of  a new type of photo-resists for holographic recording that do not require chemical treatment after exposure to light. The surface relief gratings on the photoresist are formed directly during the exposure of the holographic recording due to the interaction of light and material. So it is a one-step lithographic process that allows us to abandon the use of harmful chemicals in the production process.

Main tasks of the project.
1. Optimization of the physical and chemical properties of recording materials (both chalcogenide and azobenzene compounds) for laser recording in the optical spectral range 400 - 650 nm. The previous studies showed that photoinduced birefringence of recording material plays a decisive role in the photoinduced mass transfer process. Therefore, the focus of the project will be on the abiliy for enhancing the photo-induced birefringence value of record materials.

2.Optimization of recording conditions, including the wavelength of the recording laser, recording intensity, polarization configuration of recording beams, use of additional radiation during recording.

3. Studies to improve the photosensitivity of direct relief recording using liquid crystal additives, enhancement of relief after recording by light illumination and external electric field.

4. Optimization of the developed photoresist casting technology on glass substrates.

 
 

Project news

For the period: 01.03.2022-31.05.2022

May 31, 2022

Studies were performed to improve the photographic sensitivity of the recording by amplification with additional illumination during holographic recording: an increase in the efficiency of holographic recording with additional illumination with shorter wavelengths and perpendicular polarization with respect to the polarization direction of the recording light was achieved. Work in this direction is ongoing to optimize recording conditions. In order to increase the sensitivity of the recording, new azo-epoxy coatings with silver nanoparticle additives were developed and their properties (efficiency and shelf life) are studied.

Work is continuing on the development of a curriculum for use in the school curriculum. For example, the developed prototypes for hologram recording in semiconductors and diazo-benzene-epoxy compounds are supplemented with the possibility to use lasers of different wavelengths both for optical amplification of holographic recording and for determination of recorded diffraction grating parameters. Technical descriptions of prototypes for potential manufacturers are being worked on.

A presentation was prepared about the set of holography schools and it was presented at the Baltic Photonic Cluster online event on May 6. Scientists and entrepreneurs, including educators working in the field of photonics, were represented. The presentation raised a number of questions and interests, including in Lithuania and Estonia. Contacts with potential clients continue.


For the period: 01.12.2021-30.02.2022

March 1, 2022

During this period, the prototypes planned in the project were further improved and clarified - training kits using the developed holographic recording materials. Prototype #1 is demonstrates to the students elementary holograms - diffraction gratings of different periods are recorded, but prototype #2 additionally includes the following elementary holograms - diffraction grating recordings, kinetics and parameter measurements. In prototype #2 the direct recording to the photoresist based on azo-benzene and epoxy compounds with improved photosensitivity, which does not require chemical treatment and is therefore ideally suited for the teaching process, is used. The formation of surface relief holographic gratings will controlled by a photocell connected to a computer (USB port). Test of prototype #2 in the study process took place in classes with students.

Work was continued on the prototype holographic recording equipment #3 with the aim to optimize its dimensions and check the compatibility of parts; tested different types of microscope lenses for beam expansion to record classical transmission holograms. The need to improve the new type of photoresist material has been identified. In order to find a suitable optical element for projecting the object to be recorded on the sample, experiments were performed and the possibilities of obtaining a holographic image under continuous spectral illumination were tested.

Experiments were performed for the use of lasers of different wavelengths for the recording of optically stimulated holograms in semiconductors and diazo-benzene-epoxy compounds, as well as for the electrochemical fabrication of nickel moulds.

In a conversation with the management of LU CFI, it was decided to carry out the development of prototypes for implementation in pilot schools selected for implementation at LU CFI, further considering the options for mass production of study kits in the further commercialization process. The production possibilities of the electronic component (e.g. laser power supply unit, photocell connected to the computer's USB input) LU CFI are specified.

Intensive communication took place with the representatives of the Latvian Physics Teachers' Association, specifying the desired timeframes, prototype pilot projects for implementation in schools and practical aspects of their implementation. It is planned to introduce the first prototypes #1 and #2. Prototype #3 will be implemented after the enhancement of the holographic material used in the prototype.

After the submission of the application and the updated income forecasts, the LIAA approved the extension of the implementation of the project # KC-PI-2020/26 “Development of holographic recording materials based on azo-benzene and epoxy compounds” for 3 months or until September 30, 2022, which provides additional time for additional (third) prototype development.


For the period: 01.09.2021-30.11.2021

December 1, 2021

During this period, the prototypes planned in the project were improved - training kits using the developed holographic recording materials. The study set is intended for demonstration of holographic recording and diffractive optical elements within the physics course for pupils and students. Prototype No. 1 is intended for demonstration of various diffractive optical elements and holograms and performance of laboratory work. It consists of a laser with a wavelength in the red range (630 - 670 nm) and diffractive optical elements (3 gratings with a period in the range of 0.5 - 20 mm, 2 lenses) and a hologram. Prototype No. 2 is intended both for the demonstration of diffractive optical elements and holograms and for the performance of laboratory work, as well as for the recording of holograms. For this purpose, variant No. 1 is supplemented with a coherent radiation 532 nm laser with an intensity of ~ 30 mW. The direct recording photoresist based on azobenzene and epoxy with improved photosensitivity developed within the framework of this project is used as the recording material. The prototype no.2 set includes a 532 nm radiation splitter, two mirrors, and a sample holder. The developed recording material ensures the direct formation of surface relief holographic gratings during recording. The resist does not require chemical treatment after exposure to light and can be operated under lighting conditions that facilitate the use of prototype 2 in the training process. At the request and recommendation of the school representatives, a prototype No. 3 was developed within the framework of the contract, which provides the recording of the holographic image of the objects. Prototype No.3 is being developed on the basis of Prototype No.2.


Time period: 01.06.2021-31.08.2021

September 1, 2021

The aim of the work during this period was to improve the prototypes planned in the project - to create a training set that would use the newly developed holographic recording material. The study set is intended for demonstration of holographic recording and diffractive optics elements within the physics course for pupils and students. Prototype No. 1 is intended for demonstration of various diffractive optical elements and holograms and performance of laboratory work. It consists of a laser with a wavelength in the red range (630 - 670 nm) and diffractive optical elements (3 gratings with a period in the range of 0.5 - 20 mm, 2 lenses) and a hologram. Prototype No. 2 is intended both for the demonstration of diffractive optical elements and holograms and for the performance of laboratory work, as well as for the recording of holographic gratings. For this purpose, variant no.1 is supplemented with a coherent radiation 532 nm laser with an intensity of ~ 30 mW. The direct recording photoresist based on azobenzene and epoxy compounds with improved photosensitivity developed within the framework of this project is used as the recording material. Prototype No.2 set includes a 532 nm radiation splitter, 2 mirrors, sample holder. The developed recording material ensures direct formation of surface relief holographic gratings during recording. The resist does not require chemical treatment after light exposure and can be operated under lighting conditions that facilitate the use of prototype 2 in the training process.

At the request and recommendation of the school representatives, a prototype No. 3 is developed within the framework of the agreement, which ensures the recording of the holographic image of the objects.


Time period: 01.03.2021-31.05.2021

June 1, 2021

The aim of the work during this period was to develop the prototypes planned in the project - to create a training set, which would use the newly developed holographic recording material. The study set is intended for demonstration of holographic recording and diffractive optics elements within the physics course for pupils and students. Prototype No. 1 is intended for demonstration of various diffractive optical elements and holograms and performance of laboratory work. It consists of a laser with a wavelength in the red range (630 - 670 nm) and diffractive optical elements (3 gratings with a period in the range of 0.5 - 20 mm, 2 lenses) and a hologram. Prototype production costs are estimated in the range of 50 - 70 EUR.

Prototype No. 2 is intended both for the demonstration of diffractive optical elements and holograms and for the performance of laboratory work, as well as for the recording of holograms. For this purpose, variant no.1 is supplemented with a coherent radiation 532 nm laser with an intensity of 80 - 100 mW. The direct recording photoresist based on azobenzene and epoxy compounds with improved photosensitivity developed within the framework of this project is used as the recording material. Prototype No.2 set includes a 532 nm radiation splitter, 2 mirrors, sample holder. The developed recording material ensures direct formation of surface relief holographic gratings during recording. Resist does not require chemical treatment after exposure to light and can be operated under lighting conditions.


Time period: 01.12.2020-28.02.2021

March 1, 2021

The aim of the work during this period was to improve the photosensitivity of the recording materials studied in this project. At present, the light sensitivity of the best light-sensitive azomaterials for holographic recording of surface relief is about 1 J / cm2. Additives of Ag-containing compounds were used to significantly improve the light sensitivity of the recording material. During recording, a lattice of metallic Ag nanoparticles is formed on the surface of the recording material under the influence of light. As a result, surface relief gratings with periods of 1 and 0.5 mm with a recording exposure of ~ 50 mJ / cm2 were recorded. Holographic recording materials with this sensitivity are suitable for hologram recording with dimensions up to 5x5 inches, using lasers available in the laboratory with a wavelength of 532 nm and a power of 5 W.

Within the framework of the 2nd stage of the project "KC-PI-2020/26" "Development of holographic recording materials based on azo-benzene and epoxy compounds", the development of the developed material for the production of production prototypes has been started. The identification of a circle of industrial experts as well as potential users of the product has started. The first meetings with the representatives of the education sector have taken place, in order to create a training set, in which the newly developed holographic recording material will be used. The training set will provide for the demonstration of holographic recording and diffractive optics elements within the physics school course.

 
 

1st phase

Project Nr.  KC-PI-2020/26

Project  duration: 1.04.2020.-30.09.2020.

Project scientific leader: Dr.phys. Jānis Teteris

Project implementor: Institute of Solid State Physics, University of Latvia

On May 25, 2017, an agreement No. KC-L-2017/17 was signed between the Latvian Investment and Development Agency and the Institute of Solid State Physics, University of Latvia on receiving support Cabinet Regulation No. 692 of 25 October 2016 “Operational Program“ Growth and Employment ”1.2.1. Specific support objective “Increase private sector investment in R&D” 1.2.1.2. Regulations for the Implementation of the Measure “Support for the Improvement of the Technology Transfer System” within the framework of the Fund for Commercialization and Patenting of Research Results of Public Research Organizations.

On March 31, 2020, within the third project selection round, the Latvian Investment and Development Agency approved the project application “Development of holographic recording materials based on azo-benzene and epoxy compounds” of the Institute of Solid State Physics of the University of Latvia, identification number KC-PI-2020/26.

 

The purpose of the project is the study of photoinduced mass transfer processes in thin films of amorphous chalcogenide and azo-benzene organic compounds and to develop a new type of photo-resists for holographic recording that do not require chemical treatment after exposure to light.

The maximum support funding for the technical and economic feasibility study of the project and the development of the commercialization strategy is up to 25,000.00 euros, including the European Regional Development Fund funding of 25,000.00 euros.