Abstract – In this paper we describe a novel tool for modeling the fabrication of MEMS and semiconductor devices, and show some examples of its application in the MEMS foundry business. The tool allows an accurate visualization of the step-by step creation of the final 3-D device geometry by using the 2-D layout and a description of the fabrication process. The novelty of the tool lies in its use of voxels (3-D pixels) rather than conventional 3-D CAD techniques to represent the 3-D geometry. The tool creates highly realistic, 3-D virtual prototypes of micro-fabricated devices.
Virtual fabrication is a more productive way to build integrated MEMS/CMOS systems than process simulation.
by:Maurice J.A. Delafosse is MEMS product engineer, DPFS department, at Dalsa Corp. in Bromont, Canada.
Gerold Schröpfer is director of European operations and foundry partner program for Coventor in Sarl Paris, France.
Dalsa Semiconductor and Coventor have published an article on the use of virtual fabrication for MEMS processing. Virtual fabrication process emulation backed up by experimental calibration is a more productive way to build integrated MEMS and CMOS systems than process simulation. It provides a link between fab and design, is a lower-cost and faster technique, and provides a unique method to understand and improve design and process interaction, and wafer control/inspection. It leverages the enormous knowledge and tooling that has been developed in CMOS semiconductor fabrication, and transfers that knowledge to the MEMS world.
3-D Process Modeling – A Novel and Efficient Tool for MEMS Foundry Design Support.
We describe a software tool for creating highly realistic, 3-D virtual prototypes of MEMS and semiconductor devices, and show how it has been applied to a MEMS SOI micromachining process. Two case studies demonstrate the value of virtual prototypes to a foundry: a 3-D design rule check that revealed a design error before mask tape out, and a process integration analysis that confirmed the suspected cause of a process failure.