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Surface micromachining of chip-edge silicon microcantilevers using xenon difluoride etching of silicon-on-insulator

Thomas Lerond 1 Dmitri Yarekha 1, 2 Vanessa Avramovic 3, 1 Thierry Melin 1, 4 S. Arscott 1, 5
2 CMNF - IEMN - Centrale de Micro Nano Fabrication - IEMN
IEMN - Institut d’Électronique, de Microélectronique et de Nanotechnologie - UMR 8520
3 PCMP - IEMN - Plateforme de Caractérisation Multi-Physiques - IEMN
IEMN - Institut d’Électronique, de Microélectronique et de Nanotechnologie - UMR 8520
4 PHYSIQUE - IEMN - Physique - IEMN
IEMN - Institut d’Électronique, de Microélectronique et de Nanotechnologie - UMR 8520
5 NAM6 - IEMN - Nano and Microsystems - IEMN
IEMN - Institut d’Électronique, de Microélectronique et de Nanotechnologie - UMR 8520
Abstract : We demonstrate a straightforward surface micromachining process for the rapid prototyping of thin 'chip-edge' silicon microcantilevers protruding from the edge of a silicon-on-insulator chip. The process uses a single photolithographic mask-with xenon difluoride used to both pattern the silicon microcantilevers and release them by etching part of the underlying silicon wafer. During the release step, the silicon microcantilevers are protected from the xenon difluoride by a combination of photoresist and buried silicon dioxide. The use of common microfabrication materials (silicon-on-insulator and positive photoresist) and chemicals (buffered hydrofluoric acid and xenon difluoride), along with a maximum process temperature of 100°C, makes for a generic, soft micromachining process which isin principle-compatible with preserving the integrity of any pre-patterned circuitry present on the silicon microcantilever top surface. Doppler vibrometry measurements of the silicon microcantilevers reveal a well-defined resonant frequency and a quality factor comparable with that of similar silicon microcantilevers fabricated using other means. Our enabling technological process allows the rapid prototyping of chip-edge silicon microcantilevers-potentially integrating sensitive circuitry for novel probe technologies-by avoiding the relatively cumbersome, expensive, and potentially circuitdamaging front-to-back processing/deep etching combination.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03411474
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Submitted on : Tuesday, November 2, 2021 - 12:09:13 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, January 4, 2022 - 6:14:28 AM

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Thomas Lerond, Dmitri Yarekha, Vanessa Avramovic, Thierry Melin, S. Arscott. Surface micromachining of chip-edge silicon microcantilevers using xenon difluoride etching of silicon-on-insulator. Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering, IOP Publishing, 2021, 31 (8), pp.085001. ⟨10.1088/1361-6439/ac0807⟩. ⟨hal-03411474⟩

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