The cleanroom is open for all processes 24/7 except the corrosives bay, LPCVD, Cl-RIE, F-RIE, and the PECVD which can be used 7am-9pm only. Please sign up for the CNI shared facilities newsletter in order to receive lab updates and important announcements here.

The CNI Nanofabrication Clean Room is a facility in the Morris A. Schapiro Center for Engineering and Physical Science Research (CEPSR). It is dedicated to providing the processing tools, instrumentation, technical expertise, and team-teaching environment to support and stimulate collaborative research in nanoscale science and engineering. The facility supports the creation and evaluation of devices and materials with state of the art fabrication and characterization equipment. Applications include nanoelectronic and nanophotonic devices, micro and nano-electromechanical systems (MEMS/NEMS), flexible electronics, bio-electronics, nano-bio interfaces, and more.

This laboratory supports multidisciplinary research across many academic departments and disciplines within Columbia University and welcomes researchers from other academic institutions, government laboratories, and industrial organizations ranging from start-ups to large companies. The research bridges the physical, chemical, biological and medical sciences. The laboratory thus represents a strategic capability for Nanoscale Science and Engineering research at Columbia University.

The recently renovated and expanded CNI Nanofabrication Clean Room occupies approximately 5,000 square feet of space. It is divided into 7 separate bays, each dedicated to a set of related fabrication processes:

  • Photolithography bay consisting of dedicated fume hoods and spinners for photoresist coating, two mask aligners (one for DUV applications), two mask fabrication systems: a manual Laser Writing and Mask Fabrication system (3µm resolution) and an automatic Laser Writer system with submicron resolution, and two plasma ashers with oxygen and forming gas plasma for resist stripping and descum. The list of photoresists that are supplied by the clean room can be found here.

  • Wet chemical bay with an automatic RCA bench, SRD for 4" wafers, general acid hood and general base hood for various wet etch clean and patterning processes.

  • Plasma bay with Reactive Ion Etching (RIE) plasma processing based on chlorine and fluorine chemistries, as well as Deep RIE for high aspect ratio and selectivity etching, and PECVD for silicon oxide, silicon nitride, and amorphous silicon deposition.

  • Deposition bay including two sputtering systems (dedicated to metals and dielectrics respectively) that also allow reactive sputtering, an e-beam evaporator, Ultra High Vacuum (UHV) e-beam evaporator, Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD), and a thermal evaporator (the three latter are located in the Plasma bay due to space considerations). The list of evaporation materials supplied by the clean room can be found here and here, and sputtering targets here and here.

  • Microscopy bay consisting of high resolution SEM with e-beam writing capabilities, as well as optical profiler and filmetrics thin film thickness and optical properties measurements.

  • Furnace bay with 4 LPCVD tubes for silicon oxide (thermal, HTO and LTO), silicon nitride, silicon carbide, and thermal anneal capabilities.

  • Backend bay consisting of a Dicing saw, Chemical Mechanical Polishing (CMP) system for planarization of thin films, Parylene coating system, Wire bonders (Al and Au), and a Critical Point Dryer.

Lithographic capabilities include writing of nano-scale features down to less than 50 nanometers using a Nanobeam nB4 E-beam writing system which is located in the North West Corner building.

Some inventory items are available to purchase from the clean room office for use in the lab. Prices are subjected to change by the actual cost of the inventory items. List can be found here.


James Vichiconti Cleanroom direcTOR Office: 1020 Email:

James Vichiconti
Cleanroom direcTOR
Office: 1020

Dr. Jen Yu SENIOR Cleanroom engineer office: 1010 email:

Dr. Jen Yu
SENIOR Cleanroom engineer
office: 1010

*Gallery pictures credit: Timothy Lee

Cris Belfer Equipment Engineer office 1017 email:

Cris Belfer
Equipment Engineer
office 1017

Melody Gonzalez research operation assistant office: 1017 email:

Melody Gonzalez
research operation assistant
office: 1017