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Extreme Ultraviolet Science and Technology Engineering Research Center

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Engineering Research Center for Extreme Ultraviolet Science and Technology  (Colorado State University)

Research Focus & Anticipated Benefits

Because light in the extreme ultraviolet region of the electromagnetic spectrum (EUV) has a wavelength that is between 100 and 10 times shorter than visible light, it can ‘see’ and ‘write’ smaller patterns in applications such as microscopy and lithography.

The goal of the Center for Extreme Ultraviolet Science and Technology is to make EUV light, now mostly limited to a handful of large national facilities, available routinely in a broad variety of laboratory settings for these and other applications including high-resolution imaging, spectroscopy and nano-fabrication.

The center’s researchers have developed very compact sources of extremely bright coherent EUV light, and are using them to solve several important scientific and industrial problems. These include creating microscopes with extreme UV optics that have the ability to see much smaller objects. The microscopes can image nanostructures with 20 nanometer resolution and make movies of nanomachines in action.

They also are developing EUV light sources for the lithography of integrated circuits to create the tiniest and fastest next-generation computer chips.

The Center’s four core partner institutions are Colorado State University, the University of Colorado at Boulder, the University of California at Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Education & Outreach

The EUV Center has initiated its outreach to K-12 with programs for students and teachers in Colorado and California. The goal is to make a sustained multi-year effort that has a lasting impact on the intended audience. We offer a variety of opportunities for students and teachers. These opportunities, listed below, are lead by faculty and graduate students of the EUV center as well as by outreach coordinators at our education parternerships.

Research Experience for Teachers (RET)
A 6 week, hands on, paid research experience for middle school teachers at one of the three NSF ERC EUV sites. During this period, teachers will perform research, participate in education workshops on optics, develop new curriculum based on their experience, be audience to lectures by professors from the sites and present their results at a symposium for all three sites.

Light & Optics Workshops for Teachers
These half-day workshops are held at a local site and involve highly interactive experiments, demonstrations and inquiry-based discussions on the topics of light and optics. There is a version for middle school teachers and another for high school teachers. The demonstration-question-experiment process advocated in the workshops is designed to elicit student discovery by encouraging a constructivist approach to learning.

Light & Optics Lab for Students
On an annual basis, the EUV Center hosts a group of 24 high school students from Poudre High School in Fort Collins, CO. Students attend four separate sessions (held over two weeks) in a teaching lab at the Engineering Research Center on the CSU campus. In groups of two or three, students conduct a series of experiments on optical tables using lab equipment. Students work through each lab guided by a lab manual consisting of a series of questions designed to teach students about reflection, refraction, diffraction, lenses, lasers, fiber optics, polarization, etc. These workshops have been very successful and highly popular with the students.

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  • Image from a National Science Foundation-funded ERC.
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