Current State of Knowledge
Current State of Knowledge
The quest for materials and processes, which can fulfill current industrial demands in device miniaturization, is promoting the development of novel electrolyte formulations and electrosynthetic approaches. Recent advances in electrochemical processes have contributed to considerably enhance the interest in these techniques. One of the most significant innovations is the use of non-aqueous electrolytes such as room temperature ionic liquids (IL). IL-based electrolytes have enabled the deposition of materials that cannot be currently deposited from aqueous solutions. Another relevant breakthrough in electrochemical processing is the use of refined pulsed deposition schemes, which have experienced a tremendous development during the last decade thanks to a new generation of high frequency rectifiers. Pulsed electrochemical deposition is crucial for material growth in confined areas such as micro- and nanoscale patterns, trenches or pores. Also, pulsed deposition techniques allow the electrosynthesis of materials at very high currents/potentials. Combination of pulses at different currents/potentials is also possible, a feature which is very convenient in order to deposit layers of different materials from the same electrolyte. Other aspects increasing the capabilities of electrochemical fabrication include a better understanding of the role of the electrolyte additives thanks to the development of spectroelectrochemical methods. Also, progresses in electrode surface modification such as chemical modification or texture nanostructuring are facilitating the bonding of layers with low adhesion or enhancing the surface activation, which is crucial for electroless deposition procedures. The application of magnetic fields during electrolytic processes has also opened new ways of tailoring the properties of materials.Despite all the developments, bridging the gaps between the electrochemical processing field and miniaturized technologies is urgently needed. For this reason, this COST Action focuses in
- implementing novel electrochemical processing technologies
- updating the knowledge in corrosion phenomena and protection means at small scales, and developing solutions to increase the life-time of miniaturized devices
- promoting the integration of inexpensive electrochemical processes in the micro- and nanosystems and related industry
- providing a unique platform to heal the fragmentation existing in the research community working on electrochemical processing technologies across Europe in order to strengthen competitiveness in this area.