Getting to Know Photolithography

Here is a highlight of a technology that is enabling electronics to get smaller, lighter, and more efficient.  This technology is called photolithography.

Photolithography is a technique used for printing electronics, specifically for the microfabrication of eletronics components that are of “micro-organic” size.  Here is a brief description of what exactly photolithography is.

Using Photosensitive Glass for Photolithography

Photolithography is a process used in microfabrication to place a design or pattern on areas of a thin film or substrate. Photolithography allows patterns to be ‘printed’ onto a substrate in microscale dimensions, enabling it to be an invaluable tool in the electronics and semiconductor industries……

…Photolithography is an exceptional process for the microfabrication of electronic and optoelectronic devices at a resolution of 50 nm or less, such as micro-organic memory devices, microsensors, micro-circuits, lab-on-a-chip/micro-total analysis systems (µ-TAS), and even piezo electric devices and micro-solar panels for energy harvesting.

The potential to take a particular piece of specially developed photosensitive glass and subject it to a lithographic process to develop thousands of accurate micro-scale devices is apparent. The process can be performed rapidly and (relatively) inexpensively, making it an attractive method for the semiconductor industry.

Photolithography is continuously developing. A new proton lithography mechanism permits the micropatterning of photosensitive etchable glass based on the crystallization of the glass following irradiation with MeV protons and heat treatment. The MeV protons result in a considerably reduced minimum feature size, when compared to UV irradiation, and the threshold dose for etching is extremely low (4000 protons µm−2), offering the potential of producing complex microstructures by direct writing using extremely short exposures.

The structure depth in the glass is determined just by the range of the protons in the glass, which allows structures with varied depths to be fabricated. This technique could be valuable in the manufacture of high aspect ratio microstructures such as micro-optical devices and fluid networks.

Mo-Sci can offer a variety of photosensitive glasses that are perfect for photolithography.

Mo-Sci has been playing a vital role in the photosensitive glass market since 1985 and has a privileged record of innovation. The company’s development laboratories are second to none in the production of custom glass formulations for specialist applications.

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