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Roll-to-roll nanoimprint lithography

Our R2R-UV-NIL pilot line enables the continuous and cost-effective production of micro and nanostructures on flexible large-area film substrates for applications in lighting, photovoltaics, AR/VR, AR/VR, microfluidics, diagnostics, security, film finishing and packaging, the pharmaceutical industry and life sciences.


Rolle2Rolle Anlage, Standort Weiz

Roll2Roll system, credit: JOANNEUM RESEARCH/Bergmann

Nano-structures in roll-to-roll

The R2R pilot plant enables us to:

  • sustainable production of high-resolution conductive structural elements for organic electronics (fine conductor tracks, nanoscale electrodes for organic transistors)
  • precise optical creation of 2.5D structures for the light management in flexible films (coupling and outcoupling, light guiding) for applications in photonics
  • large-scale realisation of structured bionic surfaces and complex nanopatterns, which allow the artificial imitation of biological characteristics (shark skin, lotus effectgecko effect, structural colors)
  • cost-effective production of complex microfluidic elements on foil for bioanalytic lab-on-foil systems
  • continuous production of optimized high-tech film surfaces for packaging, decoration, safety and labeling, which display improved optical, mechanical and chemical behavior due to their micro and nanostructural properties


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Process sequence for R2R imprinting

  • The entire system is located inside a laminar flow box, which guarantees a class 10.000 cleanroom environment (ISO 7 standard).
  • A flexible polymer film as substrate on a roll is cleaned from particles by means of ionization and suctioning devices during the production process. If necessary, the surface to be coated may be pre-treated in a corona unit to improve wettability.
  • The web edge control after unwinding and directly before winding regulates the position of the web edge, keeps the web centred and ensures even winding.
  • A coating step follows, whereby the liquid lacquer is applied by means of gravure printing. If necessary, the material can then be pre-dried in the thermal dryer in order to evaporate undesired solvent.
  • The structuring of the coated embossing varnish is then carried out using UV nanoimprint lithography (UV-NIL). The structures are transferred from an embossing die into the still liquid UV-curable lacquer and cured/cross-linked by means of UV exposure. Once these structures on the film have been released from the embossing stamp, the film is rewound.
  • The quality of the embossing is checked in-line with a high-resolution line scan camera.


Find out more about our services in the area of R2R pilot line for micro- and nanostructuring as well as Materials and components for micro- and nanostructuring (NILcure®).


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Institute for Sensors, Photonics and Manufacturing Technologies
Franz-Pichler-Straße 30,

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