Development of an SU-8 MEMS process with two metal electrodes using amorphous silicon as a sacrificial material
KAUST DepartmentComputer, Electrical and Mathematical Sciences and Engineering (CEMSE) Division
Electromechanical Microsystems & Polymer Integration Research Lab (EMPIRe)
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AbstractThis work presents an SU-8 surface micromachining process using amorphous silicon as a sacrificial material, which also incorporates two metal layers for electrical excitation. SU-8 is a photo-patternable polymer that is used as a structural layer for MEMS and microfluidic applications due to its mechanical properties, biocompatibility and low cost. Amorphous silicon is used as a sacrificial layer in MEMS applications because it can be deposited in large thicknesses, and can be released in a dry method using XeF2, which alleviates release-based stiction problems related to MEMS applications. In this work, an SU-8 MEMS process was developed using ;-Si as a sacrificial layer. Two conductive metal electrodes were integrated in this process to allow out-of-plane electrostatic actuation for applications like MEMS switches and variable capacitors. In order to facilitate more flexibility for MEMS designers, the process can fabricate dimples that can be conductive or nonconductive. Additionally, this SU-8 process can fabricate SU-8 MEMS structures of a single layer of two different thicknesses. Process parameters were optimized for two sets of thicknesses: thin (5-10 m) and thick (130 m). The process was tested fabricating MEMS switches, capacitors and thermal actuators. © 2013 IOP Publishing Ltd.