Micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) are used today in a multitude of applications. The production of MEMS is a fully automated wafer process consisting of deposition, patterning and etching. Especially for safetyrelevant MEMS devices such as airbag or ESP sensors, a 100% inspection is required. After an optical inspection of the MEMS structures, they are sealed and protected by bonding a silicon cap wafer on top. This bonding can lead to an additional stress in the wafer stack that interferes with the MEMS function, which is tested by an electrical test. This stress can cause individual elements to stick together or to be bent. In the case of a failed test, the problem cannot be located on the MEMS structures because they are opaque to visible light. The defects are to be detected by a topography measurement. This publication discusses the challenge of topography measurement using an low-coherence interference microscope, which is necessary to achieve a high lateral and axial resolution. It turns out that dispersion does not have such a large influence on the measurement signal as the uneven thickness of the cap. The influence of thickness variation could be reduced by measuring both cap surfaces and subtracting them from the MEMS topography. A comparative measurement of the MEMS without a cap shows that the residual deformation is of a similar magnitude. Removing the cap, however, will cause any stress that may be present to dissolve.
Micro-electro-mechanical system's (MEMS) applications have greatly expanded over the recent years, and the MEMS industry has grown almost exponentially. One of the strongest drivers are the automotive and consumer markets. A 100% test is necessary especially in the production of automotive MEMS sensors since they are subject to safety relevant functions. This inspection should be carried out before dicing and packaging since more than 90% of the production costs are incurred during these steps. An electrical test is currently being carried out with each MEMS component. In the case of a malfunction, the defect can not be located on the wafer because the MEMS are no longer optically accessible due to the encapsulation. This paper presents a low coherence interferometer for the topography measurement of MEMS structures located within the wafer stack. Here, a high axial and lateral resolution is necessary to identify defects such as stuck or bent MEMS fingers. First, the boundary conditions for an optical inspection system will be discussed. The setup is then shown with some exemplary measurements.
Systems for imaging require to employ high quality optical components in order to dispose of optical aberrations and thus reach sufficient resolution. However, well-known methods to get rid of optical aberrations, such as aspherical profiles or diffractive corrections are not easy to apply to micro-optics. In particular, some of these methods rely on polymers which cannot be associated when such lenses are to be used in integrated devices requiring high temperature process for their further assembly and separation. Among the different approaches, the most common is the lens splitting that consists in dividing the focusing power between two or more optical components. In here, we propose to take advantage of a wafer-level technique, devoted to the generation of glass lenses, which involves thermal reflow in silicon cavities to generate lens doublets. After the convex lens sides are generated, grinding and polishing of both stack sides allow, on the first hand, to form the planar lens backside and, on the other hand, to open the silicon cavity. Nevertheless, silicon frames are then kept and thinned down to form well-controlled and auto-aligned spacers between the lenses. Subsequent accurate vertical assembly of the glass lens arrays is performed by anodic bonding. The latter ensures a high level of alignment both laterally and axially since no additional material is required. Thanks to polishing, the generated lens doublets are then as thin as several hundreds of microns and compatible with micro-opto-electro-systems (MOEMS) technologies since they are only made of glass and silicon. The generated optical module is then robust and provide improved optical performances. Indeed, theoretically, two stacked lenses with similar features and spherical profiles can be almost diffraction limited whereas a single lens characterized by the same numerical aperture than the doublet presents five times higher wavefront error. To demonstrate such assumption, we fabricated glass lens doublets and compared them to single lenses of equivalent focusing power. For similar illumination, the optical aberrations are significantly reduced.
Some of the critical limitations for widespread use in medical applications of optical devices, such as confocal or optical coherence tomography (OCT) systems, are related to their cost and large size. Indeed, although quite efficient systems are available on the market, e.g. in dermatology, they equip only a few hospitals and hence, are far from being used as an early detection tool, for instance in screening of patients for early detection of cancers. In this framework, the VIAMOS project aims at proposing a concept of miniaturized, batch-fabricated and lower-cost, OCT system dedicated to non-invasive skin inspection. In order to image a large skin area, the system is based on a full-field approach. Moreover, since it relies on micro-fabricated devices whose fields of view are limited, 16 small interferometers are arranged in a dense array to perform multi-channel simultaneous imaging. Gaps between each channel are then filled by scanning of the system followed by stitching. This approach allows imaging a large area without the need of large optics. It also avoids the use of very fast and often expensive laser sources, since instead of a single point detector, almost 250 thousands pixels are used simultaneously. The architecture is then based on an array of Mirau interferometers which are interesting for their vertical arrangement compatible with vertical assembly at the wafer-level. Each array is consequently a local part of a stack of seven wafers. This stack includes a glass lens doublet, an out-of-plane actuated micro-mirror for phase shifting, a spacer and a planar beam-splitter. Consequently, different materials, such as silicon and glass, are bonded together and well-aligned thanks to lithographic-based fabrication processes.
In recent years, optical coherence tomography (OCT) became gained importance in medical disciplines like ophthalmology, due to its noninvasive optical imaging technique with micrometer resolution and short measurement time. It enables e. g. the measurement and visualization of the depth structure of the retina. In other medical disciplines like dermatology, histopathological analysis is still the gold standard for skin cancer diagnosis. The EU-funded project VIAMOS (Vertically Integrated Array-type Mirau-based OCT System) proposes a new type of OCT system combined with micro-technologies to provide a hand-held, low-cost and miniaturized OCT system. The concept is a combination of full-field and full-range swept-source OCT (SS-OCT) detection in a multi-channel sensor based on a micro-optical Mirau-interferometer array, which is fabricated by means of wafer fabrication. This paper presents the study of an experimental proof-of-concept OCT system as a one-channel sensor with bulk optics. This sensor is a Linnik-interferometer type with similar optical parameters as the Mirau-interferometer array. A commercial wavelength tunable light source with a center wavelength at 845nm and 50nm spectral bandwidth is used with a camera for parallel OCT A-Scan detection. In addition, the reference microscope objective lens of the Linnik-interferometer is mounted on a piezo-actuated phase-shifter. Phase-shifting interferometry (PSI) techniques are applied for resolving the conjugate complex artifact and consequently contribute to an increase of image quality and depth range. A suppression ratio of the complex conjugate term of 36 dB is shown and a system sensitivity greater than 96 dB could be measured.
The EU-funded project VIAMOS1 proposes an optical coherence tomography system (OCT) for skin cancer detection, which combines full-field and full-range swept-source OCT in a multi-channel sensor for parallel detection. One of the project objectives is the development of new fabrication technologies for micro-optics, which makes it compatible to Micro-Opto-Electromechanical System technology (MOEMS). The basic system concept is a wafer-based Mirau interferometer array with an actuated reference mirror, which enables phase shifted interferogram detection and therefore reconstruction of the complex phase information, resulting in a higher measurement range with reduced image artifacts. This paper presents an experimental one-channel on-bench OCT system with bulk optics, which serves as a proof-of-concept setup for the final VIAMOS micro-system. It is based on a Linnik interferometer with a wavelength tuning light source and a camera for parallel A-Scan detection. Phase shifting interferometry techniques (PSI) are used for the suppression of the complex conjugate artifact, whose suppression reaches 36 dB. The sensitivity of the system is constant over the full-field with a mean value of 97 dB. OCT images are presented of a thin membrane microlens and a biological tissue (onion) as a preliminary demonstration.
The presented paper shows the concept and optical design of an array-type Mirau-based OCT system for early diagnosis of skin cancer. The basic concept of the sensor is a full-field, full-range optical coherence tomography (OCT) sensor. The micro-optical interferometer array in Mirau configuration is a key element of the system allowing parallel imaging of multiple field of views (FOV). The optical design focuses on the imaging performance of a single channel of the interferometer array and the illumination design of the array. In addition a straylight analysis of this array sensor is given.