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Low Temperature Methods for Rounding Silicon Nozzles

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000088751D
Original Publication Date: 1977-Jul-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-04
Document File: 1 page(s) / 13K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Bassous, E: AUTHOR

Abstract

This article describes a method of rounding silicon nozzles which does not create defects in the nozzle structure. The sharp edges and corners of the rectangular orifice of silicon nozzles may be easily damaged by the build-up of stresses in the structure during ink-jet printing operation. An analysis has shown that a small amount of rounding of the edges and corners results in a stronger and more stable structure. A common method used to obtain rounding is by repeated thermal oxidation (~1000 degrees C) and stripping of the oxide film. The oxide film growth is uniform and predictable but the high temperature employed has been shown to create stresses and dislocations in the nozzle orifice.

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Low Temperature Methods for Rounding Silicon Nozzles

This article describes a method of rounding silicon nozzles which does not create defects in the nozzle structure. The sharp edges and corners of the rectangular orifice of silicon nozzles may be easily damaged by the build-up of stresses in the structure during ink-jet printing operation. An analysis has shown that a small amount of rounding of the edges and corners results in a stronger and more stable structure. A common method used to obtain rounding is by repeated thermal oxidation (~1000 degrees C) and stripping of the oxide film. The oxide film growth is uniform and predictable but the high temperature employed has been shown to create stresses and dislocations in the nozzle orifice. To avoid this damage, a number of methods are set forth below which could accomplish the desired rounding of the orifice by removal of silicon material at temperatures close to room temperature.

1. ANODIZATION. The electrochemical oxidation of silicon in a suitable electrolyte such as KNO(3), ethylene glycol and water can be carried out to achieve controlled growth of SiO(2). By repeated anodization and stripping in HF, the required rounding can be accomplished.

2. ELECTROCHEMICAL ETCHING. Similar to anodization above, except that the electrolyte (concentrated HF) dissolves the oxide as soon as it is formed. The amount of silicon removed is proportional to the product current x time, and occurs at room temperature. This technique offers the advantage of producing a polished surface, and may be carried out in a single proc...