LithoProf3D®-GSII
Key Features

Ultra-fast 3D Lithography equipment for production on substrate formats up to 4" (6” in customized equipment).

LithoProf3D®-GSII

World’s first modular 3D lithography system which satisfies academic needs and industrial requirements. LithoProf3D®-GSII supports component fabrication as well as master fabrication (creation of masters for replication technologies in series manufacturing).

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  • Ultra-fast 3D Lithography equipment for production on substrate formats up to 4".
  • Prints on substrates of various shape or kind with a large build volume, enabling on-device printing.
  • 5-axes system for position-synchronized movements that enable stitching-free processing.
  • Tunable dimensionality of structures from 1D via 2D and 2.5D to real 3D structure fabrication.
  • Ultra-fast fabrication with tunable resolution down to sub-µm.
  • Works with many photoresists, photostructurable glasses.
  • Thin-film metal ablation possible by simply changing the process parameters.
  • Powerful machine code creator software LithoSoft3D with numerous implemented and combinable fabrication strategies.
  • Via the equipment software LithoStream the fabrication parameters can be adjusted to control resolution throughout the process. It allows to print critical parts in high-resolution, and to gain speed in other parts.
  • Touch screen with user-friendly GUI and easy operation.
  • LithoBath3D: Easy to exchange alternative exposure setup (inverted exposure configuration) for large-scale structures. Not limited by the working distance of the objective (no manual adjustment required) with automatic switching of laser path (patent exclusively licensed).
  • LithoDILL3D: Dip-in exposure mode with the microscope objective in physical contact with the photoresist and using it as immersion media (dip-in 3D lithography) providing constant optical conditions throughout the printing (patent exclusively licensed).
  • Chuck: Base with exchangeable plates for different substrate formats and shapes (wafers, glass substrates, …).
  • Vision-to-Align System: Enables detection of the target printing positions on the workpiece (position, orientation).

We use fs-pulsed lasers operating in the green spectral range. State-of-the art in TPP technology are either green or NIR lasers. Green lasers are especially suited to process ORMOCER®s, a unique and well-established material class.

Our systems can work on a stitching as well as a non-stitching exposure strategy.

Typically, our systems consist of a galvo-scanner to deflect the laser beam and a translation stage to move the sample. The galvo-scanner exhibits very high dynamics and enables high scanning speeds. However, the working area is limited to the Field-of-View (FoV) of the microscope objective. To realize structures that are larger than the FoV a step-and-expose method is applied which can result in positioning as well as stitching errors.

To avoid stitching the structuring can be executed by using the translation stage only. However, as the translation stage exhibits inertia, the available scan speed is limited.

To benefit from both the high dynamics of the galvo-scanner as well as the process area of the translation stage, Multiphoton Optics systems are equipped with a so-called Infinite Field-of-View (IFoV) mode which is based on the synchronized movement of the galvo-scanner and the translation stage.

When stitching is applied sophisticated algorithms and strategies can be used to minimize or even completely prevent potential artefacts in the structures. We have implemented various methods based on stitching via galvo-scanner only and on synchronized IFoV.

 

Depending on the requirements the surface roughness (RMS) can be adjusted to lower than 10 nm. It is to mention that the target roughness will influence the fabrication time.

  • Negative photoresists: exposed areas are cross-linked and remain on the substrate after the development step.

  • Positive photoresists: exposed areas are removed by the development step.

The TPP technology enables fabrication on regular planar substrates (e.g. glass or silicon wafers) as well as on-device-printing: direct fabrication on active/passive devices (e.g. lasers, photodiodes, fibers).

Using dry objectives or dip-in objectives the substrate thickness can be as high as several centimeters. Using oil-immersion objectives, typical thickness is 0.17 mm. Processing on ultra-thin subtrates with a thickness of only 30 micrometer is also possible.

We use immersion and dry objectives. Immersion objectives exhibit high numerical apertures to ensure highest printing resolution. Immersion objectives can either be used as oil immersion type or as dip-in type with the objective in physical contact with the photoresist. Dry objectives exhibit lower numerical apertures but in general provide a larger Field-of-View (FoV).

Typical maximum scan speeds are in the range of 50 – 200 mm/s.

As TPP is based on raster or vector scanning, fabrication with constant scan speed is required. This requires acceleration of the laser beam. Due to the underlying acceleration dynamics the optimum scan speed depends on the distance between two points. The larger/smaller the distance the higher/lower the optimum scan speed.

 

A full-volume scan exposes the complete volume of a structure in a layer-by-layer process. This method is appropriate for complex 3D structures.

A contouring scan exposes only the shell of a structure. The inner part can be polymerized after the development step by a simple UV exposure. This method is appropriate especially for lenses.

 

Doing a contouring scan for an object, two different strategies can be applied. The 2D contouring exposes the shell of a structure in a layer-by-layer manner. The 3D contouring scans the real topography of a structure. For both 2D/3D contouring the enclosed unpolymerized photoresist will be cross-linked in a subsequent UV exposure after the development step.

 

The material class of ORMOCER®s exhibit unique chemical, physical and mechanical properties. ORMOCER®s consist of an inorganic-organic network. The inorganic components provide glass-like properties whereas the organic components enable conventional processing as pure organic polymers. One of the mainly used ORMOCER® in TPP is the well-known OrmoComp®.

Hybrid Polymers For Micro and Nano Optical Components - Unique Features:

  • Excellent transparency for VIS and near UV down to 350 nm.
  • Excellent thermal stability of cured patterns up to 300 °C (short term), 270 °C (long term).
  • High mechanical and chemical stability of cured structures.
  • High resolution down to 100 nm feature size.
  • Compatible to UV imprint and UV moulding.
  • Compatible to UV lithography with proximity exposure.
  • Ready-to-use solutions, solvent-free formulations.

OrmoComp®:

  • Well-established in industrial large-volume production of optical components.
  • Ideally suited to be processed with 515 nm TPP wavelength.
  • Compatible to various stamp materials (e.g. PDMS, PFPE, OrmoStamp®, quartz, Ni).

LithoSoft3D and LithoStream – Ultimate 3D Lithography Software Solution

Unique software toolkit for TPP direct laser writing of structures ranging from 1D to 3D.

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LithoSoft3D

Desktop software to transform design data into virtual GCode.

  • Machine-independent virtual GCode creation (code adaptable by LithoStream at machine level)
  • 8 application-oriented modules covering multiple design formats
  • File preparation for independent workgroups at any desktop
  • Laser trajectory definition (e.g. Full-volume scanning, Contouring, LCON3D)
  • Multiple fabrication modes (via stage, galvoscanner and IFoV)

LithoStream

LithoProf3D® control software to run the TPP fabrication process.

  • Control of machine-dependent process parameters (e.g. scan speed, laser power)
  • Selection of different microscope objectives
  • Live monitoring of the fabrication process
  • Batch TPP fabrication processes
  • Automatic autofocus, triangulation, power calibration and power check
  • Output of fabrication parameters into a fabrication/sample database

ASCII – Import of point clouds (txt files) to be connected by different splines.

3D object – Import and processing of STL/ obj files.

Grayscale – Import of grayscale designs, e. g. of Diffractive Optical Elements (DOE).

Voxel – Design of voxel fields.

Workbench – Modification and rearrangement of multiple already created structures from other modules.

Field – Definition of arrangement patterns (e. g. hexagonal, circle, rectangular) including automatic parameter searches.

Lens – Definition or import of lens designs.

Woodpile – Generation of woodpile structures.