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Proceedings Paper

Fabrication of microstructures by ion beam micromachining
Author(s): Sam T. Davies; D. A. Hayton; Kazuyoshi Tsuchiya
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Paper Abstract

The use of non-focused and focused ion beams as tools for fabrication and assembly of microstructures is described. Non-focused, low energy (< 1.5 keV) and high current density (< 100 mA cm-2) argon ion beams produced by a Kaufman-type source have been used for ultra-precision micromachining of materials for microelectromechanical systems applications. Uniform material removal rates of up to 1 micrometers min-1 without reactive etching are achieved during stencil-mask milling of micro-parts or during pattern transfer into ceramic or semiconductor substrates by photolithography followed by ion milling. Micro-components with typical dimensions in the 1 - 100 micrometers range and having dimensional tolerances of order 0.1 micrometers have been demonstrated, consisting of ultra-thin plates, beams, shafts and cantilevers. Self supporting nickel, aluminium, stainless steel and mu-metal plates with thicknesses down to 1 micrometers have then been used for fabricating more complex micro-parts such as disks, gears and cogs by direct writing using focused ion beam (FIB) micromachining with a resolution of 50 nm. The FIB instrument allows in situ imaging during microfabrication using secondary elements or ions, and can be used for inspection during micro-part assembly. A novel process applicable to the production of 3D micro-parts is also described.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 September 1996
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 2880, Microlithography and Metrology in Micromachining II, (13 September 1996); doi: 10.1117/12.250957
Show Author Affiliations
Sam T. Davies, Univ. of Warwick (United Kingdom)
D. A. Hayton, Univ. of Warwick (United Kingdom)
Kazuyoshi Tsuchiya, Univ. of Warwick (United Kingdom)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2880:
Microlithography and Metrology in Micromachining II
Michael T. Postek; Craig R. Friedrich, Editor(s)

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