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Published February 2005 | Published
Book Section - Chapter Open

Parylene etching techniques for microfluidics and bioMEMS


Parylene C (poly(monochloro-p-xylylene)) is a member of a unique family of thermoplastic, crystalline polymers. Compared to other polymers, parylene films are exceptionally conformal and chemically inert owing to its vapor deposition polymerization (VDP) coating process. These properties bring about many interesting possibilities for MEMS, particularly in microfluidic and bioMEMS applications. Dry etching techniques are required to define fine features in parylene films. For the first time, selective parylene C removal using oxygen-based plasmas is characterized for plasma etching, reactive ion etching (RIE), and deep reactive ion etching (DRIE) based methods. The ability of these techniques to achieve high aspect ratio (HAR) structures desirable for MEMS applications is also investigated.

Additional Information

© 2005 IEEE. This work was supported in part by the Engineering Research Centers Program of the NSF under Award Number EEC-9402726. We would like to thank Mr. Trevor Roper and Mr. Damien Rodger for assistance in fabrication and Mr. Tuan Hoang for help with proofreading.

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