Machining of micro parts is not literally correct.
Removal of material in the form of chips or debris
having the size in the range of microns.
Creating micro features or surface characteristics
(especially surface finish) in the micro/nano level.
Definition: material removal at micro/nano level with
no constraint on the size of the component being
Why Micro Machining?
Final finishing operations in manufacturing of precise
parts are always of concern owing to their most
critical, labour intensive and least controllable
In the era of nanotechnology, deterministic high
precision finishing methods are of utmost importance
and are the need of present manufacturing scenario.
The need for high precision in manufacturing was felt
by manufacturers worldwide to improve
interchangeability of components, improve quality
control and longer wear/fatigue life.
Why Micro Machining?
Present day High-tech Industries, Design requirements are
– Extraordinary Properties of Materials (High Strength, High
heat Resistant, High hardness, Corrosion resistant etc)
– Complex 3D Components (Turbine Blades)
– Miniature Features (filters for food processing and textile
industries having few tens of microns as hole diameter and
thousands in number)
– Nano level surface finish on Complex geometries (thousands
of turbulated cooling holes in a turbine blade)
– Making and finishing of micro fluidic channels (in
electrically conducting & non conducting materials, say glass,
• Silicon Micromachining
• Mechanical Micromachining
• The wafers are chemically cleaned to remove particulate matter,
• organic, ionic, and metallic impurities
• High-speed centrifugal whirling of silicon wafers known as "Spin
• Coating" produces a thin uniform layer of photoresist (a light
• sensitive polymer) on the wafers
• Photoresist is exposed to a set of lights through a mask often made
• of quartz
• •Wavelength of light ranges from 300-500 nm (UV) and X-rays
• (wavelengths 4-50 Angstroms)
• • Two types of photoresist are used:
• – Positive: whatever shows, goes
• – Negative: whatever shows, stays
• Etching is used in micro fabrication to
chemically remove layers from the surface of
a wafer during manufacturing.
• Etching is a critically important process
module, and every wafer undergoes many
etching steps before it is complete.
• It is characterized by etch rate , etch selectivity
and etch uniformity
• 1. Wet etching
• Etching processes used liquid-phase ("wet") etchants. The wafer can be
immersed in a bath of etchant, which must be agitated to achieve good
process control. For instance, buffered hydrofluoric acid (BHF) is used
commonly to etch silicon dioxide over a silicon substrate.
• 2. Dry etching
• Modern VLSI processes avoid wet etching, and use plasma etching instead.
• plasma etching operates between 0.1 and 5 Torr
• The plasma produces energetic free radicals, neutrally charged, that react
at the surface of the wafer. Since neutral particles attack the wafer from
all angles, this process is isotropic
Steps In Wet Etching
• Injection of hole into semiconductor to si+
• Attaching –ve charge oh group to positive
• Reaction between hydrated Si and complex
agent in etchant solution
• Dissolution of reaction product
• Bulk and surface micromachining are processes used to create
microstructures on microelectromechanical MEMS devices.
• While both wet and dry etching techniques are available to both bulk and
surface micromachining, bulk micromachining typically uses wet etching
techniques while surface micromachining primarily uses dry etching
• Bulk micromachining selectively etches the silicon substrate to create
microstructures on MEMS devices.
• Unlike Bulk micromachining, where a silicon substrate (wafer) is selectively
etched to produce structures, surface micromachining builds
microstructures by deposition and etching of different structural layers on
top of the substrate
• Generally polysilicon is commonly used as one of the layers and silicon
dioxide is used as a sacrificial layer which is removed or etched out to
create the necessary void in the thickness direction
• The main advantage of this machining process is the possibility of realizing
monolithic microsystems in which the electronic and the mechanical
components(functions) are built in on the same substrate.
• An important technology of MST
• Developed in Germany in the early 1980s
• LIGA stands for the German words
– LIthographie (in particular X-ray lithography)
– Galvanoformung (translated electrodeposition or
– Abformtechnik (plastic molding)
• The letters also indicate the LIGA process
• Apply resist, X-ray exposure through mask,
• remove exposed portions of resist,
• electrode position to fill openings in resist,
• strip resist for (a) mold or (b) metal part
Processing Steps in LIGA
• Making an intermediate X-ray absorption mask (IM) with about 2.2 µm
high gold absorber structures by electron beam .
• Copying the intermediate mask into a working mask (WM) with about 25
µm high gold absorber structures by X-ray lithography.
• Copying the working mask to 100 µm to 3000 µm high micro structures by
deep X-ray lithography
• Electroplating metals like gold, copper or nickel into these structures to
form metal micro structures.
• Making a several millimetre thick mould from these structures by nickel
• Mass replication of the mould into thermoplastic resin
Advantages of LIGA
• LIGA is a versatile process – it can produce
parts by several different methods
• High aspect ratios are possible (large height-
to-width ratios in the fabricated part)
• Wide range of part sizes is feasible - heights
ranging from micrometers to centimeters
• Close tolerances are possible
Disadvantages of LIGA
• LIGA is a very expensive process
– Large quantities of parts are usually required to justify
• LIGA uses X-ray exposure
– Human health hazard