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Replication of microstructures

A discussion started in 1996 and continuing through 2003.
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I am interested in the replication of microstructured surfaces (less than or equal to 100 um). The substrates that the microstructures are on are: copper, electroless nickel, silicon, and photoresist. Can anyone out there help me find people or companies that can do this. I am also very interested in reading about these processes, since I am a mechanical engineer in need of curing his ignorance about these topics.

Don Morrison


Don, I have a question re. your letter.

Do you want to replicate the surfaces for subsequent electron microscopy, or do you have microstructures on these types of substrates and now want to duplicate them on similar materials?

Paul Stransky
- Putnam, Connecticut


There are various Silicone Materials that are sold for surface replication, or you can use a cellulose acetate solution almost a liquid to cover the surface, and then when the carrier evaporates peel off the residual cellulose material. Then: You can plate/coat the material for surface profile analysis, or if you are lucky the replicate might pick up enough of the surface material atoms for SEM or EDAX analysis of the original materials.

Contact ASM, the American Society for Metals ( for information on publications on this. Also TMS, The International Metallographic Society (

Gordon Smith



I am a LSU student working on a senior project for CAMD (Center for Advanced Microstructures and Devices). The project consist of automating the development process of MEMs. I am looking for materials that are good for the following solutions. We are looking into 316 or 316L stainless steel but we are open to any suggestions.

The Developer contains the following:

2-(2-Butoxyethoxy)ethanol 600 ml (same as (diethylene glycol butyl ether))

Morpholine 200 ml

2-aminoethanol 50 ml (same as ethanolamine)

Water 150 ml

The Rinse Solution contains the following:

2-(2-Butoxyethoxy)ethanol 800 ml

Water 200 ml

Here a summary of the project. The development process is currently done by hand and needs to be automated. The development process of MEMs consists of 4 baths. The baths will be a developer bath, two developer baths, and a DI bath. We are making a xyz positioner that will move a cassette (a cassette is a tray that carries PMMA wafers which are the MEMs material) to each of these baths. We need to make sure the material we use is adequate for this application. Also, the system will be located within a fume hood and this will be located within a class 100 clean room.


Kevin A [last name deleted for privacy by Editor]
CAMD - LSU student - Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA

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