A new sacrificial layer process for the fabrication of micromechanical systems
Cui Z., Lawes RA.
A new process using photoresists as sacrificial layers has been developed to fabricate micromechanical components and systems. Commonly used photoresists are spun on a substrate as a sacrificial layer and patterned by a mask aligner. Free-standing metal structures are built by patterning a second layer of thick photoresist and electroplating on top of the photoresist sacrificial layer. Electrostatic microactuators and micromotors have been fabricated using the new photoresist sacrificial layer technique. Compared with all the existing sacrificial layer techniques, the photoresists used in the new process are easy to coat, easy to dissolve and less process steps are involved. The process is compatible with most of the materials and processes used in existing microfabrication technology. The fabrication of micromechanical systems becomes much simpler and cheaper with the use of a photoresist as a sacrificial layer.