Journal of Micro/Nanolithography, MEMS, and MOEMSFabrication of sloped sidewalls by inductively coupled plasma etching for silicon micro-optic structures
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Current work on deep-reactive ion etching has primarily focused on creating vertical sidewalls for microelectromechanical system and electronics applications. For micro-optical and micro-optoelectromechanical system structures control of the sidewall angles other than vertical is as important as the ultimate depth. In this work, we investigate the control of sidewall profiles using an inductively coupled plasma technique. The material systems being investigated on blanket samples are silicon and silicon dioxide with CF4, CHF3, and SF6 chemistries. Micro-optic structures are created by photolithography and CHF3 gas has been explored to achieve a wide range of etch rates, smooth etch profiles, and sidewall angles. The etch profiles are characterized by scanning electron microscopy.