GenISys announces Layout LAB simulation software for MEMS

Dec. 5, 2006 — Developers of MEMS and flat panel displays now have a powerful new development and productivity tool from GenISys GmbH, a leading-edge provider of software solutions for efficient processing optimization of microstructure fabrication.

GenISys introduced Layout LAB, a simulation platform for mask aligner lithography that lets users virtually model, redesign and optimize device layouts and processes in hours rather than weeks.

As with advanced IC manufacturing, where lithography simulation has enabled technologies such as Optical Process Correction (OPC) and Design for Manufacture (DfM), the “virtual lab” approach to MEMS is intended to not only save time but also help realize lower costs, higher manufacturing yield and faster time-to-market.

The company says the benefits extend to the development and production of micro devices, like high-resolution flat panel displays, in which proximity printing (mask aligner lithography) is a key part of the manufacturing process.

The program enables design and modeling of processes including mask layout, exposure tool, process parameters, accurate 3-D aerial image and resist contour calculation. Its VisualFLOW graphical user interface gives users a drag-and-drop tool for designing and optimizing complex hierarchical process flows. And, because of its database-driven architecture, Layout LAB lets developers store predefined functional modules and create, store and quickly retrieve their own custom process flows.

In addition to supporting modeling and optimization, Layout LAB simulation provides fast 3-D visualization and verification. When introducing a new device layout to the production line, the first step is to verify that the layout will print as desired using specific parameters. With Layout LAB, users can get the verification they need without having to produce masks or run the layout in the actual production line, further cutting both time and costs.

“In today’s MEMS industry, there is tremendous process variability, which, in conjunction with increasingly narrow process margins, requires a dedicated simulation environment. In contrast to IC manufacturing, where projection lithography is the standard, MEMS processes primarily use proximity lithography. Simulation software for MEMS applications needs to model mask aligners, larger layouts and also thick resist layers,” said Nezih Unal, vice president of marketing and sales of GenISys, in a prepared statement.

“GenISys enables today’s MEMS researchers, process development and production engineers to get the print results they need in days, rather than weeks. Layout LAB’s unique database-driven, modular architecture combines performance, flexibility and ease of use. Most important, it gives MEMS developers a level of responsiveness that has previously been unattainable.”

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