SBIR Phase I: Wafer-Scale, Hermetic Packaging of Intelligent MEMS-Based Systems

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 0539413
Agency Tracking Number: 0539413
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2006
Solicitation Year: 2005
Solicitation Topic Code: EL
Solicitation Number: NSF 05-557
Small Business Information
391 Airport Industrial Drive, Ypsilanti, MI, 48198
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Sonbol Massoud-Ansari
 (734) 547-9896
Business Contact
 Sarah Massoud-Ansari
Title: Ms
Phone: (734) 547-9896
Research Institution
This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project addresses development of a novel packaging method for wafer-scale hermetic packaging of intelligent MEMS. Packaging of MEMS along with the requisite electronics is one of the main technical barriers to commercialization of these devices. Packaging methods are often expensive, have long development cycles, and may adversely affect the device performance and reliability. In cases where direct media access is required and the MEMS needs to operate in harsh environments, protecting the electronics from the media provides a huge challenge. The proposed packaging approach consists of extending the MEMS device and etching a deep cavity into the substrate to house the ASIC. A wafer-level hermetic bonding method will then be developed to cap the ASIC while allowing electrical connection between the ASIC and the device. This project will focus on the development of attachment methods for securing the ASIC inside the substrate cavity, hermetic bonding of a cap wafer and inclusion of NanoGettersTM inside the packaged subassembly. At the end of Phase I, the attachment method, hermetic cap bonding and NanoGetterTM integration will be qualified. A pressure sensor / ASIC testbed will be fabricated to verify overall system integration. If successful, this will have an impact in the sensor/ASIC packaged subassemblies market. As a result of a positive outcome of this project the company could offer foundry services for custom development of packaging and integration of ASIC into a variety of MEMS devices. The main industrial markets will be ultra-high vacuum pressure sensors for semiconductor equipment and the main medical markets that are targeted are pressure sensing pacing leads, pressure sensing catheters, and pressure sensing guidewires. The proposed packaging method provides a manufacturable solution for one of the most difficult aspects of development and commercialization of MEMS devices.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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