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Proceedings Paper

Micromachined near-field probe arrays
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Paper Abstract

In this paper, we describe the fabrication of cantilevered arrays of tapered near-field probes with pyramidal, sub-micrometer tips that are micromachined from glass substrates. High density data storage and page-oriented retrieval are the potential applications of the described microdevice. Heating and pulling or chemical etching of optic fibers are the common approaches to sub-wavelength aperture fabrication necessary to probe the near-field. Arrays have been previously formed by chemical etching of or film deposition on an opaque substrate and were later coupled to optical fibers for use as near-field probes though; alignment of optical fibers with the apertures for guiding the light to the detector in the far-field is not trivial. Probe arrays described in this work were initially fabricated by dicing a 175-μm thick borosilicate glass substrate using a 250-μm thick resinoid blade and were subsequently tapered and sharpened in a two-step chemical etch process performed at room temperature. The tips were then metallized using a 100nm thick coating of aluminum. Arrays of upto eight 1cm to 2.5 cm long probes with center-to-center spacing of 450 μm and tip sizes of approximately 200 nm were fabricated. Roughness on the vertical sidewall was characterized and the dependence of optical loss coefficients of the light guiding bulk on etch duration was investigated.

Paper Details

Date Published: 21 January 2003
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 4983, MOEMS and Miniaturized Systems III, (21 January 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.472895
Show Author Affiliations
Pradeep Srinivasan, Univ. of Cincinnati (United States)
Fred R Beyette, Univ. of Cincinnati (United States)
Ian Papautsky, Univ. of Cincinnati (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4983:
MOEMS and Miniaturized Systems III
James H. Smith, Editor(s)

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