The authors present a simplified fabrication method for the creation of free-standing dielectric mirrors for use in monolithic wavelength tunable surface-normal photonic devices, including vertical-cavity surface emitting lasers. This process utilizes a nonplasma dry etching process, based on the noble gas halide, xenon difluoride , to remove an inorganic sacrificial film comprised of low-temperature deposited amorphous germanium . By utilizing nonplasma dry etching of an inorganic film, this procedure circumvents the need for critical point drying and avoids the limitations imposed by polymer-based sacrificial layers. In this procedure the authors observe remarkably rapid lateral etching, with rates in excess of for electron-beam evaporated films. The viability of this novel surface micromachining process is demonstrated by presenting the static and dynamic mechanical characteristics of electrostatically actuated suspended dielectric Bragg reflectors.
Fabrication of suspended dielectric mirror structures via xenon difluoride etching of an amorphous germanium sacrificial layer
Garrett D. Cole, Elaine Behymer, Lynford L. Goddard, Tiziana C. Bond; Fabrication of suspended dielectric mirror structures via xenon difluoride etching of an amorphous germanium sacrificial layer. J. Vac. Sci. Technol. B 1 March 2008; 26 (2): 593–597. https://doi.org/10.1116/1.2890673
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