ENGS 135             Microfabrication Syllabus      Winter 2014        Prof. Levey


Outline Schedule here


At the end of this course, students may expect to:

      Have a working knowledge of the hardware used in deposition of thin films and be able to choose a process suitable for a particular film deposition.

      Be able to relate deposition conditions to the resulting microstructure and performance of a thin film.

      Have a working knowledge of the tools of microfabrication, including photolithography, etching, thin film deposition, software design layout tools, and other techniques used in microelectronics and MEMS.

      Be able to design and specify fabrication of anti-reflection and high reflectance thin film coatings.

      Be able to design and specify the fabrication process flow for a microelectromechanical system.

      Understand the principles and processes flow involved in fabrication MOS transistors and ICs.



Milton Ohring,  Materials Science of Thin Films, 2nd edition, Academic Press (2002)


Sami Franssila, Introduction to Microfabrication, 2nd edition, Wiley, (Sept. 2010)



Homework                                                     25%

Labs and Industry Tours                             15%

Research papers (2)                                    30%  

   In-class presentation on same (2)                       10%  

Design Project and Report                           20%   


6-8 problem sets.  Significant effort.  Due at the start of class on days indicated.



Lab experiences include thin film evaporation and sputtering, oxide growth on silicon, photolithography, device fabrication and testing, analysis (SEM, AFM, ).



We will have lab tours at Chroma, a nearby optical filter manufacturing company, and at Analog Devices (MEMS and mixed signal microelectronics fabrication just this side of Boston) or IBM (microelectronics fabrication near Burlington VT).  The first will be a half-day trip in late January, the second will take the better part of a day, near the end of the term.



A significant project is an important part of this course.  Recently most students have chosen microfabrication design projects, though a lab project is also an option.  As an introduction to MEMS design, an earlier assignment will involve the design and layout a lateral resonator MEMS device in the poly-MUMPS technology using L-Edit.  A design project then involves inventing, designing process flow, and laying out a device of your own.  There will be an initial design review, where you will briefly present your layout (or lab experiment design) and get feedback from the class, and a later lab period will be dedicated to your work on this project.  You are welcome to discuss your work with me any other time as well.  Your final project report is due the last day of final exams.  A design project report should include a description of what it does, how it works, and some design decisions or trade-offs (about 2 pages), plus appropriate figures showing representative cells and cross-sectional views.



Thin Films and Microfabrication are subjects with broad applicability and a wide range of techniques.  Lectures cover a representative few.  This is your opportunity to add to the range of topics we discuss in class.  In addition, by delving deeply into an area of your choice, you will likely understand the overall course material at a much deeper level.  Each student chooses one topic in thin films and one topic in microfabrication.  For example, in thin films you may choose a deposition technique we did not go into very deeply, or a materials study of structure/process relationships, or the challenges of a particular new material.  In microfabricatin you might delve into an interesting new device, giving details of fabrication, or you might choose a processing technique we didn't cover.   Your target audience is members of this class; you can assume some knowledge of topics covered in the course.  For each chosen subject you will write a paper and then give a 20 minute presentation to the class.  So, each student turns in two papers and gives a presentation on each of those papers.


CASE STUDIES (course organization): 

Thin film deposition and microfabrication are diverse subjects with many applicable tools and techniques.  We will study a representative subset of these, focusing on general principles.  To motivate and glue together these many techniques, I will present them in the context of techniques and materials science needed to make four example devices:

Case Study 1 – Optical Filter

   Required Processes: Vacuum systems., PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition), film optics     

Case Study 2 - Surface MEMS Motor

   New required Processes:   CAD, lithography, mask making, wafers,  LPCVD deposition, etching

Case Study 3 - Bulk MEMS Diaphragm (pressure sensor)

  New required Processes:   hard mask, anisotropic etching

Case Study 4 - Semiconductor MOS Transistor

  New required Processes:  Doping, ion implantation, gate oxide growth



My office is 217e Cummings.  I encourage you to come in and discuss projects/paper topics, and any other questions you may have.  You are welcome to drop by, or make an appointment via email.



All sources in work turned in must be properly referenced.  That includes internet based sources.  We had a problem with this in a previous offering of this course, so I'll be explicit: anything which is not in your own words must be quoted and referenced.  Changing a few words in a sentence or paragraph does not make it yours.  You may consult with other students on homework and your design project, and in fact you are encouraged to get feedback on designs, but where others make a significant contribution they should be credited (e.g. "John Smarts suggested the folded beam structure I implemented on".), After talking to others, you must be able to solve problems on your own without then looking at their work.  You must draw submitted design layouts yourself. 



If you have a hidden learning disability or any other adverse condition that might affect your performance in the course, please see me individually early in the term.  Students with questions about disability related accommodations may also contact the Student Accessibility Service office.  All inquiries and discussions about accommodations will remain confidential.