Advanced lithography for micro-optics
Since the beginning of micro-optics fabrication most of the used technologies have been adapted from or are related to semiconductor fabrication techniques. These are widely known and the special microelectronics fabrication tools, especially lithography machines, are available at numerous places. Besides the fact that therefore micro-optics was able to took advantage of the steady development of semiconductor technology this tight linkage has also a lot of drawbacks. The adaptation of element properties to the fabrication limits given by the available technologies is very often connected with compromises in optical performance. In nowadays micro-optics fabrication has reached a level which justifies the development of fabrication tools specialized to its own demands. In the article the special demands of optical microstructures on the fabrication technologies are discussed and newly developed mico-optics fabrication tools are introduced. The first one is an electron-beam lithography machine for use with up substrates up to 300mm large and 15mm thick achieving a very high overlay accuracy and writing speed. The second one is a laser-lithography system capable to expose micro-optical structures onto non-planar substrates.