Heidelberg µPG 501 Mask Maker

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Heidelberg µPG 501 Mask Maker
Equipment Details
Technology Lithography
Materials Restriction Metals
Material Processed S1813, AZ5214, SPR 220-3.0, SPR 220-7.0, AZ 12XT, SC 1827, SU-8
Equipment Manual
Overview System Overview
Operating Procedure SOP
Supported Processes Supported Processes
Maintenance Maintenance

The μPG 501 is a micro pattern generator for direct writing applications and low volume mask making. The system can be used for applications such as MEMS, Bio MEMS, Integrated Optics, Micro Fluidics or any other application that requires high precision, high-resolution microstructures. The μPG 501 features a compact design with all electronic components integrated into the system. A personal computer is used as system control. The GUI based control software makes it easy for users to convert the designs, perform a manual or automatic alignment and start the exposure. The small address grid allows placement of structures with very high accuracy. The real-time autofocus system monitors and corrects focus position during exposure, which guarantees high resolution and repeatability over the entire exposure area. The LED light source can be used to expose the standard photoresists that are used in lithography. The system offers a raster-scan and vector exposure mode for 2D patterns and in addition it is also possible to create complex 3D (grey scale) structures in thick photoresist in a single pass.


No processing piece parts on this system without specific training from the tool engineer
Current parameters for exposing mask blanks sold through the LNF store
Exposure Time: 45 ms
Defocus Value: 0
If you are not sure how long your mask writing is going to take, we suggest that you reserve the instrument for 3 hrs (or more) and then create a ticket with the actual patterning time and request partial charges


  • High Precision Writing Mode
    1. Minimum structure size: 1 μm (This is the minimum feature size that can be patterned. For large patterning areas of CDs ~1 μm, the uniformity will vary considerably. Please contact the tool engineer for an evaluation of your pattern before exposure)
    2. Address grid: 50 nm
    3. Write speed: 50 mm²/min
    4. Line edge roughness (3σ): 100 nm
    5. CD uniformity (3σ): 200 nm
    6. Alignment accuracy (3σ): 200 nm (best case scenario).
  • High Throughput Writing Mode
    1. Minimum structure size: 2 μm
    2. Address grid: 100 nm
    3. Write speed: 100 mm²/min
    4. Line edge roughness (3σ): 150 nm
    5. CD uniformity (3σ): 300 nm
    6. Alignment accuracy (3σ): 400 nm (best case scenario).
If you have features that are 2 μm or less on the mask, we recommend that you send it to a 3rd party mask photomask manufacturer
The accuracy of alignment scales with the time of write and the temperature drift. For a typical mask, expect a scaling error in the range of approximate 200 ppm

System overview

Hardware details

  • LED wavelength: 390 nm
  • Optical system: DMD™ and reflecting mirrors
  • Stage movement: Linear motors
  • Encoder resolution: 20 nm
  • Focusing system: Real time with dynamic range of 80 µm
  • Greyscale: 128 intensity levels

Substrate requirements

  • For mask making (contact lithography or stepper reticle)
    1. Soda lime or Quartz plates
    2. Size: 2" dia. wafers or larger. Rectangular/square pieces with one edge at least 2" in length. The system can be used to direct write on smaller substrates but they have to be mounted first onto larger pieces. Users needing to pattern on smaller substrates should create a Helpdesk Ticket to get trained on proper mounting procedures
    3. Maximum thickness: 6 mm
    4. Flatness: <±20 μm
  • For direct write on substrates
    1. Si, GaAs, Quartz wafers and pieces
    2. Size: 2" to 5". Minimum size is 2” dia wafer or a 2” X 2” square. For smaller samples, please contact a tool engineer.
    3. Flatness: <±20 μm

Material restrictions

Approved photoresists

  1. S1813
  2. AZ5214
  3. SPR 220
  4. SPR 955
  5. AZ 12XT
  6. SC 1827
  7. SU-8
Antireflective coatings may be used
If you need to use a particular resist that is not listed here, please contact the tool engineer via the Helpdesk Ticket system

Supported processes

LNF supports direct writing on mask blanks for this tool. Mask blanks can be either 4" or 5" soda lime glass, 90 mil thick, low reflectance Chromium with 400 nm of AZ1518 photoresist. For the current Exposure Time and Defocus Value, please see the Announcements section.

For photomasks and substrates that have been patterned using positive resists, the tone can be inverted using the YES Image Reversal Oven. Please refer to the supported processes section for details.

Standard operating procedure

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Checkout procedure

  1. Complete a Lithography training session. If you have already completed this for another tool, you do not need to complete it again.
  2. Read through this page and the Standard Operating Procedure above.
  3. Practice with your mentor or another authorized user until you are comfortable with tool operation. If your mentor is not an authorized user or you do not know of an authorized user that can train you, proceed to the next step.
  4. Create a Helpdesk Ticket requesting training.
  5. A tool engineer will schedule a time for initial training.
  6. Practice with your mentor or another authorized user until you are comfortable with tool operation.
  7. Schedule a checkout session with a tool engineer via the helpdesk ticket system. If this checkout is successful, the engineer will authorize you on the tool.


Users are not allowed to carry out maintenance on the Heidelberg µPG 501 Mask Maker. For issues with the tool, please contact the tool engineer or create a helpdesk ticket. Users are prohibited from trying to troubleshoot without authorization from the tool engineers. The users are, however, allowed to exit and restart the Mask Maker software in case error messages pop up or the software freezes. Double click in the dwl icon on the desktop to launch the software. Provide the following Username and Password to launch:

  • Username - dwl (case sensitive)
  • Password - dwl (case sensitive)