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3D Printer with Wafer Alignment Capability

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000246069D
Publication Date: 2016-May-02
Document File: 2 page(s) / 28K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Disclosed is a three-dimensional (3D) printer with wafer alignment capabilities.

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This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 51% of the total text.

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3 3D Printer with Wafer Alignment Capability

D Printer with Wafer Alignment Capability

The novel contribution is a three-dimensional (3D) printer with wafer alignment capabilities. The 3D printer accepts a wafer (e.g., a silicon wafer) and similar to the function performed by a lithography stepper, reads the alignment marks on the wafer and aligns the wafer so printing of an object can take place at specified location(s) on each chip. The manufacturing line includes several 3D printers with alignment capabilities; each one is optimized to work with specific material and add a specific component or structure on the wafer.

The following examples illustrate both the concept and the need for 3D printers that can handle a silicon wafer and have alignment capacities, allowing a 3D object to be accurately added (i.e., printed) to a specific location on a chip.

Interfacing with bio-sensor and devices for medical testing

Packaging devices such as biosensors, devices for medical testing, gas sensors, etc. requires an interface that allows the flow of liquids or gases to and from a sensor located on a chip. Fabricating such an interface in the form of tubing and hermetic sealing of the chip is typically done after the chip was diced from the wafer using packaging tools with relatively poor alignment and dimension control. This requires the chip designer to allocate substantial real estate on the chip to allow enough space for the crude interface to external world. Furthermore, some functions (e.g., a pump) are usually manufactured separately and then packaged next to the chip, further increasing the total size of the sensor.

The use of a 3D printer with wafer alignment capacities enables the building of the interface to connect tubing to the chip, and provides superior sealing to circumvent leaks. Furthermore, in some cases, additional functions such as a pump can be formed adjacent to or over the sensor.

Optical benches

Optical benches are typically built to interface a fiber optic to a diode and trans-impedance amplifier (for a receiver) or to a laser d...