Optics Balzers offers optical patterning processes

May 6, 2011 – BUSINESS WIRE — Optics Balzers, optical coating partner, is offering a portfolio of patterning technologies for producing high-grade optical components. Depending on the application, patterning techniques such as photolithography, laser ablation, or masked coatings are available.

Beside the core business of coating optical thin film components, Optics Balzers also offers additional processing steps such as patterning of optical components. Most patterning solutions are used in conjunction with the sputter technology developed by Optics Balzers.

Photolithography capabilities such as wet etching, reactive ion etching, and lift-off techniques allow the manufacture of high-precision patterned coatings and gratings in the submicron range. Photolithographic techniques are specifically applied in the production of lids for micro electromechanical systems (MEMS) elements and CCD/CMOS image sensors. This method enables pattern sizes smaller than 10 microns to be produced.

Laser ablation offers novel options for patterning optical filter coatings. Through the application of customized processes high-precision patterns can be generated on the coated components. Laser ablation provides flexibility in producing customized shapes and patterns as well as very short processing times. It is possible to manufacture patterned filters down to a minimum pattern size of 100 microns by means of this technology.

Metal masks fixed to the substrates generate patterns during the coating process. The achievable pattern size and shape that this technology allows is limited, with the minimum size being around 200 microns. The advantage of the masked coating technique is that patterning can be applied with almost any coating process and material, including processes requiring high temperatures.

Together with its subsidiary in Jena, Optics Balzers supplies optical coatings and components. More information is available at www.opticsbalzers.com.

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