Laser ablation for polymer waveguide fabrication
chapterposted on 14.02.2012, 14:17 by Shefiu S. Zakariyah
An increase in interconnection density, a reduction in packaging sizes and the quest for lowcost product development strategy are some of the key challenges facing micro-optoelectronics design and manufacture. The influence of high-density, small-sized products has placed significant constraints on conventional electrical connections prompting various fabrication methods, e.g. photolithography, being introduced to meet these challenges and ameliorate the rapidly changing demand from consumers. While high-power solid state lasers are fundamental to large scale industrial production, excimer laser on the other hand has revolutionised the manufacturing industry with high precision, easy 3D structuring and less stringent production requirements. Micro-structuring using excimer laser, best known as laser ablation, is a non-contact micro- and nano-machining based on the projection of high-energy pulsed UV masked beam on to a material of interest such that pattern(s) on the mask is transferred to the substrate, often at a demagnified dimension with high resolution and precision. The use of mask with desired patterns and beam delivery system makes the fabrication in this case accurate, precise and easily controllable. The first part of this chapter introduces the fundamentals of laser technology and material processing. In the second part, optical interconnects as a solution to ‘bottlenecked’ conventional copper interconnections is introduced with emphasis on excimer laser ablation of polymer waveguides and integrated mirrors. Key research findings in the area of optical circuit boards using other techniques are also briefly covered.
- Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering