Fabrication Processes For Magnetic Microactuators With Polysilicon Flexures

Abstract

Electroplated magnetic films have been integrated with silicon-based surface micromachining to fabricate magnetically actuated microflexure structures. Both the "frame-plating" technique and also a less complex onemask plating process have been used to electrodeposit NiFe onto polysilicon flexures coated with Cr-Cu seed layers. The microactuators are released by removing the underlying sacrificial layer in a hydrofluoric-acid etch. The microactuators described in this paper are potentially useful in microphotonic systems as well as other applications. INTRODUCTION Magnetic forces have been demonstrated to be very effective at achieving large forces and large displacements in micromachined actuators [1-7]. However, many magnetic microactuators are constructed in a non-batch fabrication process [1-3]. In 1994, we introduced a microactuation technology that combines magnetic thin films with surfacemicromachined flexures in a relatively simple batch-fabrication process [5-6]. This combina..

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