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29 March 2013 Release of MEMS devices with hard-baked polyimide sacrificial layer
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Abstract
Removal of polyimides used as sacrificial layer in fabricating MEMS devices can be challenging after hardbaking, which may easily result by the end of multiple-step processing. We consider the specific commercial co-developable polyimide ProLift 100 (Brewer Science). Excessive heat hardens this material, so that during wet release in TMAH based solvents, intact sheets break free from the substrate, move around in the solution, and break delicate structures. On the other hand, dry reactive-ion etching of hard-baked ProLift is so slow, that MEMS structures are damaged from undesirably-prolonged physical bombardment by plasma ions. We found that blanket exposure to ultraviolet light allows rapid dry etch of the ProLift surrounding the desired structures without damaging them. Subsequent removal of ProLift from under the devices can then be safely performed using wet or dry etch. We demonstrate the approach on PECVD-grown silicon-oxide cantilevers of 100 micron × 100 micron area supported 2 microns above the substrate by ~100-micron-long 8-micron-wide oxide arms.
© (2013) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Javaneh Boroumand Azad, Imen Rezadad, Janardan Nath, Evan Smith, and Robert E. Peale "Release of MEMS devices with hard-baked polyimide sacrificial layer", Proc. SPIE 8682, Advances in Resist Materials and Processing Technology XXX, 868226 (29 March 2013); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2018628
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