Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Engineering Science (Interdepartmental Program)

Document Type



UV lithography of thick photoresist is widely used in microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) and micro-optoelectromechanical systems (MOEMS). SU-8 is a typical negative tone thick photoresist for micro systems, and can be used for both structural material and pattern transfer. This dissertation presents an effort to comprehensively study these important subjects. The first part, and the most fundamental part of this dissertation concentrated on the numerical analysis and experimental study of the wavelength dependent absorbance of SU-8 and the diffraction effects on the sidewall profiles of the microstructures made using UV lithography of SU-8. This study has laid the foundation for all the designs and analysis for the BioMEMS and Micro-optic components and systems using UV lithography of SU-8 in the following chapters of the dissertation. After a full discussion of UV lithography of SU-8, the applications of SU-8 in BioMEMS and micro optics were presented in the following areas: 1) design, analysis, and molding fabrication of biodegradable PLGA microstructures for implanted drug delivery application; 2) design, fabrication, and test of a novel three-dimensional micro mixer/reactor based on arrays of spatially impinging micro-jets; 3) design, analysis, fabrication, and test of a novel new type of truly three-dimensional hydro-focusing unit for flow cytometry applications based on SU-8; 4) Study on a new technology to fabricate out-of-plane pre-aligned microlens and microlens array, and the application of the microlens in a fiber bundle coupler. Finally, a new negative tone thick photoresist based on the composition of EPON resins 165 and 154 were introduced. The synthesis, physical properties, and UV-lithography properties of this new photoresist have been completed. The experimental results have proved it can be a better alternative to SU-8 and can be used in various MEMS and MOEMS applications. Most of the contents have been published or accepted for publications in technical journals or international conferences. Two US patent applications are pending and two more disclosures have been filed for the new technologies presented in this dissertation. There are obviously more work to be done in this promising area and these are presented in the section for future work.



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Committee Chair

Wanjun Wang