AlGaAs/GaAs Micromachining for Monolithic Integration of Micromechanical Structures with Laser Diodes

Yuji UENISHI  Hidenao TANAKA  Hiroo UKITA  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Electronics   Vol.E78-C   No.2   pp.139-145
Publication Date: 1995/02/25
Online ISSN: 
Print ISSN: 0916-8516
Type of Manuscript: Special Section PAPER (Special Issue on Micromachines and Micro Electro Mechanical Systems)
micromachining,  microstructures,  integrated sensors,  integrated optics,  microelectro mechanical systems,  MEMS,  

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GaAs-based micromachining is a very attractive technique for integrating mechanical structures and active optical devices, such as laser diodes and photodiodes. For monolithically integrating mechanical parts onto laser diode wafers, the micromachining technique must be compatible with the laser diode fabrication process. Our micromachining technique features three major processes: epitaxitial growth (MOVPE) for both the structural and sacrificial layers, reactive dry-etching by chlorine for high-aspect, three-dimensional structures, and selective wet-etching by peroxide/ammonium hydroxide solution to release the moving parts. These processes are compatible with laser fabrication, so a cantilever beam structure can be fabricated at the same time as a laser diode structure. Furthermore, a single-crystal epitaxial layer has little residual stress, so precise microstructures can be obtained without significant deformation. We fabricated a microbeam resonator sensor composed of two laser diodes, a photodiode, and a micro-cantilever beam with an area of 400700 µm. The cantilever beam is 3 µm wide, 5 µm high, and either 110µm long for a 200-kHz resonant frequency or 50 µm long for a 1-MHz resonant frequency. The cantilever beam is excited by an intensity-modulated laser beam from an integrated excitation laser diode; the vibration signal is detected by a coupled cavity laser diode and a photodiode.