Electroless etching of semiconductors has been elevated to an advanced micromachining process by the addition of a structured metal catalyst. Patterning of the catalyst by lithographic techniques facilitated the patterning of crystalline and polycrystalline wafer substrates. Galvanic deposition of metals on semiconductors has a natural tendency to produce nanoparticles rather than flat uniform films. This characteristic makes possible the etching of wafers and particles with arbitrary shape and size. While it has been widely recognized that spontaneous deposition of metal nanoparticles can be used in connection with etching to porosify wafers, it is also possible to produced nanostructured powders. Metal-assisted catalytic etching (MACE) can be controlled to produce (1) etch track pores with shapes and sizes closely related to the shape and size of the metal nanoparticle, (2) hierarchically porosified substrates exhibiting combinations of large etch track pores and mesopores, and (3) nanowires with either solid or mesoporous cores. This review discussed the mechanisms of porosification, processing advances, and the properties of the etch product with special emphasis on the etching of silicon powders.
Kolasinski, K. W. (2021). Metal-Assisted Catalytic Etching (MACE) for Nanofabrication of Semiconductor Powders. Micromachines, 12(7), 1-18. http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/mi12070776