Self-Assembled Microsphere Based Lithography of Tmeplate to Fabricate Gecko-Like Synthetic Adhesive

Gecko-like synthetic adhesives (GSAs) are dry adhesives that replicate the function of gecko toepads through their microscopic fibrillar structure. To produce GSA molds, we fabricated Si templates using microsphere lithography. We formed a monolayer of polystyrene microspheres using colloidal self-assembly, then transferred this mask to a Si wafer. Next, we sputtered Au onto the mask and substrate and removed the microspheres using ultrasonication. The resulting Au-patterned Si wafer was exposed to a chemical etch to remove the uncoated material, forming deep pits in the Si surface. This surface structure forms a template for the fabrication of soft polymer molds that can be used to fabricate GSAs.