Materials opportunities in a post Moore era
As computational tasks and the complexity of addressable problems become more difficult computing will dramatically change. The future of computing may then shift from traditional architectures to an increased dependence on alternatives – deep neural networks for artificial intelligence and superconducting circuits for quantum computing, to name a few. It is, however, also important to acknowledge that scaling continues leading to the further densification of computational components. There are materials opportunities in both arenas. Our research efforts have focused on developing specialized stimuli-responsive material sets around two broad topic areas: (i) materials for area selective depositions and (ii) responsive materials for electronic packaging. (i) Current approaches to nanoscale fabrication largely rely on subtractive processes, which often alters the chemical composition of a surface (such as oxidation) or damage materials by amorphizing an otherwise crystalline thin film, from reactive ion etching, for insance. As miniaturization reaches single nanometer regimes, surfaces and interfaces become dominant. The ability to add a film to a surface in a selected area allows one to grow components of a device without damage to surfaces or interfaces. With the use of specialized inhibiting chemistries area selective depositions can be achieved, with reduced defectivity as well as offering multiple capabilities such as self-aligning patternable monolayers that can be employed in an example of additive lithography. (ii) As the packaging space is challenged to join an increasing number of separately manufactured components into integrated device the packaging materials requirements become more demanding. These materials sets make use of irreversible chemistries in curing and crosslinking that tend to reduce throughput and yield as errors or defects in processing cannot be addressed after processing. The ability to redesign these materials to introduce moieties that can be controllably broken and reformed offers the potential to access highly desirable materials characteristics in the packaging space such as reworkability and rehealability.