This paper explains the idea of self-sacrificial surface micromachining. In a self-sacrificial process, there is no distinction between structural and sacrificial layers. Instead, during patterning, an in situ chemical change converts a structural material into a sacrificial material, or vice versa. This greatly increases the design space of a self-sacrificial process when compared to a traditional process with the same number of layers, as all layers can be used simultaneously for both structural and sacrificial purposes. To show the possibility of self-sacrificial surface micromachining, a concrete implementation was developed using poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) as the material. Unexposed PMMA, with a high average molecular weight, was used as the structural material. Exposed PMMA, with a lower average molecular weight, was used as the sacrificial material. The in situ chemical change was caused by deep-UV irradiation at 254 nm.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering