A novel antistiction method using harmonic excitation on the microstructure
is presented. We exploit a simplified model consisting of a single-degree-
of-freedom mass-damping-spring system to simulate the drying process of the
microstructure. Based on this proposed method, we can predict the dynamic
response of the microstructure including the resonant frequency and the dam
ping characteristic of the drying system. And then adequate harmonic excita
tion is applied to release the microstructure during drying process. Silico
n dioxide beams with 0.7-/-mum-thick, 16-mum-wide, 120-mum-long, 4 mum gap.
were released successfully by this method. Theoretical predictions of the
dynamic behavior of microstructures during the drying process agree well wi
th experimental results. The proposed approach effectively improves the yie
ld rate of the microstructure without additional masks and complicated proc
ess during the postetch release process. (C) 2001 American Vacuum Society.