Simulating anisotropic etching of silicon in any etchant: Evolutionary algorithm for the calibration of the continuous cellular automaton

Goslvez, M A and Ferrando, N and Xing, Y and Pal, Prem and Sato, K and Cerda, J and Gadea, R (2011) Simulating anisotropic etching of silicon in any etchant: Evolutionary algorithm for the calibration of the continuous cellular automaton. Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering, 21 (6). ISSN 0960-1317

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An evolutionary algorithm is presented for the automated calibration of the continuous cellular automaton for the simulation of isotropic and anisotropic wet chemical etching of silicon in as many as 31 widely different and technologically relevant etchants, including KOH, KOH+IPA, TMAH and TMAH+Triton, in various concentrations and temperatures. Based on state-of-the-art evolutionary operators, we implement a robust algorithm for the simultaneous optimization of roughly 150 microscopic removal rates based on the minimization of a cost function with four quantitative error measures, including (i) the error between simulated and experimental macroscopic etch rates for numerous surface orientations all over the unit sphere, (ii) the error due to underetching asymmetries and floor corrugation features observed in simulated silicon samples masked using a circular pattern, (iii) the error associated with departures from a step-flow-based hierarchy in the values of the microscopic removal rates, and (iv) the error associated with deviations from a step-flow-based clustering of the microscopic removal rates. For the first time, we present the calibration and successful simulation of two technologically relevant CMOS compatible etchants, namely TMAH and, especially, TMAH+Triton, providing several comparisons between simulated and experimental MEMS structures based on multi-step etching in these etchants.

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Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Anisotropic wet chemical etching; Automated calibration; Circular pattern; CMOS Compatible; Error measures; Etch rates; Evolutionary operators; MEMS-structure; Multi-step; Removal rate; Robust algorithm; Silicon samples; Simultaneous optimization; Surface orientation; Underetching
Subjects: Physics
Divisions: Department of Physics
Depositing User: Team Library
Date Deposited: 31 Oct 2014 10:02
Last Modified: 10 Nov 2017 06:12
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