Award for Excellence in Nanofabrication


The Excellence in Nanofabrication award, sponsored by Raith Nanofabrication, recognizes outstanding research involving hands-on work at one or more nanofabrication laboratories in a post-secondary institution in Canada. The successful competitor will have demonstrated high quality work in use of techniques for micro-nano fabrication, including testing, packaging, and assembly.

This award is open to graduate students of a Canadian university.

Winners are strongly encouraged to use prize funds to support education or training related to micro-nanosystems R&D and may be applied to the cost of attending a conference or workshop or visiting a lab or other technical facility inside or outside of Canada.

Judges, Judging Criteria

The judging panel will consist of three representatives from Canadian industries and universities. The judges assess each competitor and select the demonstration that best meets the following criteria:

Criterion 1: Technical excellence (20 points)

  • Achieves technical success with a functional fabrication outcome.
  • Demonstrates originality or innovation in the approach to the problem.
  • Demonstrates a disciplined approach to process design and an understanding of process integration. Practices can include, but are not limited to, design of experiments, process simulation, and wafer tracking.
  • Demonstrates understanding of the role of manufacturability aspects, such as design-for-test, metrology, yield analysis, and process control.
  • Duly considers the role of packaging and/or integration and the interaction of these processes with the fabricated components.
  • Effectively uses lab capabilities, considering potential use of toolsets from multiple labs, or a combination of hands-on fabrication and lab services. The research objectives pursued by custom fabrication could not have been readily achieved otherwise.

Criterion 2: Relevance and contribution to the field of research (20 points)

  • Documentation of the fabrication process facilitates retention of knowledge, and if appropriate, transfer of knowledge.
  • Lab user(s) works effectively with lab staff to maximize efficiency of the research and likelihood of success.
  • The technology shows commercial potential that leads to societal benefit. (Industry involvement in the work is viewed favourably but is not mandatory.)

Criterion 3: Presentation Excellence and Visual Effectiveness (10 Points)

  • Explanation of the background information or theory in a form understandable to one’s peers.
  • Clarity of explanation of key technical points.
  • Fluency in explanation, interplay between those making the presentation.
  • Humour, flair, originality.
  • Smooth recovery from an unexpected problem.
  • Quality and effectiveness of visual/written materials.

Note: Where projects have been undertaken by a team and over a period of time, the presenter must clearly differentiate what the current contribution is, including their own contribution