Abstract

Large-area microlens arrays are becoming important components in many applications such as LCD-TV diffusers. This paper reports a uniform pressure, low temperature process for their fabrication. The process integrates gas-assisted embossing and UV-curing embossing. During the process, the 230mm×203mm PMMA substrate is pressed against the stainless-steel stamper coated with UV-curable resin. Under the gas pressuring and UV irradiating, a large array of microlens can be formed. By using this process, high embossing temperature and high embossing pressure can be avoided. Little residual stress is observed in the embossed PMMA substrate. The uniformity of large-area fabrication and optical properties of fabricated resin microlens array have been verified. This study has successfully shown the potential of this gas-assisted UV embossing process for the replication of large-area microstructures.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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References

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  1. D. Daly, R. F. Stevens, M. C. Hutley, and N. Davies, "The manufacture of microlenses by melting photoresist," Meas. Sci. Technol. 1, 759-766 (1990).
    [CrossRef]
  2. M. He, X.-C. Yuan, N. Q. Ngo, J. Bu, and V. Kudryashov, "Simple reflow technique for fabrication of a microlens array in solgel glass," Opt. Lett. 28, 731-733 (2003).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  3. C. P. Lin, H. Yang and C. K. Chao, "A new microlens array fabrication method using UV proximity printing," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 748-757 (2003).
    [CrossRef]
  4. X.-C. Yuan, W. X. Yu, N. Q. Ngo, and W. C. Cheong, "Cost-effective fabrication of microlenses on hybrid sol-gel glass with a high-energy beam-sensitive gray-scale mask," Opt. Express 10, 303-308 (2002).
    [PubMed]
  5. W. X. Yu, and X. -C. Yuan, "UV induced controllable volume growth in hybrid sol-gel glass for fabrication of a refractive microlens by use of a grayscale mask," Opt. Express 11, 2253-2258 (2003).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  6. V. Bardinal, E. Daran, T. Leïchlé, C. Vergnenègre, C. Levallois, T. Camps, V. Conedera, J. B. Doucet, and F. Carcenac, "Fabrication and characterization of microlens arrays using a cantilever-based spotter," Opt. Express 15, 6900-6907 (2007).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. W. L. Chang, and P. K. Wei, "Fabrication of a close-packed hemispherical submicron lens array and its application in photolithography," Opt. Express 15, 6774-6783 (2007).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. S.-I. Chang, and J.-B. Yoon, "Shape-controlled, high fill-factor microlens arrays fabricated by a 3D diffuser lithography and plastic replication method," Opt. Express 12, 6366-6371 (2004).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  9. R. Guo, S. Xiao, X. Zhai, J. Li, A. Xia, and W. Huang, "Micro lens fabrication by means of femtosecond two photon photopolymerization," Opt. Express 14, 810-816 (2006).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  10. B. K. Lee, D. S. Kim and T. H. Kwon, "Replication of microlens arrays by injection molding", Microsystem Technologies," 10 (2004) 531-535.
    [CrossRef]
  11. N. S. Ong, Y. H. Koh and Y.Q. Fu, "Microlens array produced using hot embossing process," Microelectron. Eng. 60 (2002) 365-379.
    [CrossRef]
  12. W. Pan, X. Shen, and L. Lin, "Micro-plastic lens array fabricated by a hot intrusion process," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 1063-1071 (2004).
  13. L. T. Jiang, T. C. Huang, J. R. Ciou, C. Y. Chang, and S. Y. Yang, "Fabrication of plastic microlens arrays using hybrid extrusion rolling embossing with a metallic cylinder mold fabricated using dry film resist," Opt. Express 15, 12088-12094 (2007).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  14. J. H. Chang, F. S. Cheng, C. C. Chao, Y. C. Weng, S. Y. Yang, and L. A. Wang, "Direct imprinting using soft mold and gas pressure for large area and curved surfaces," J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 23, 1687-1690 (2005).
    [CrossRef]
  15. C. Y. Chang, S. Y. Yang, L. S. Huang, and K. H. Hsieh, "Fabrication of polymer microlens arrays using capillary forming with a soft mold of micro-holes array and UV-curable polymer," Opt. Express 14, 6253-6258 (2006).
    [CrossRef] [PubMed]

2007

2006

2005

J. H. Chang, F. S. Cheng, C. C. Chao, Y. C. Weng, S. Y. Yang, and L. A. Wang, "Direct imprinting using soft mold and gas pressure for large area and curved surfaces," J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 23, 1687-1690 (2005).
[CrossRef]

2004

B. K. Lee, D. S. Kim and T. H. Kwon, "Replication of microlens arrays by injection molding", Microsystem Technologies," 10 (2004) 531-535.
[CrossRef]

W. Pan, X. Shen, and L. Lin, "Micro-plastic lens array fabricated by a hot intrusion process," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 1063-1071 (2004).

S.-I. Chang, and J.-B. Yoon, "Shape-controlled, high fill-factor microlens arrays fabricated by a 3D diffuser lithography and plastic replication method," Opt. Express 12, 6366-6371 (2004).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

2003

2002

1990

D. Daly, R. F. Stevens, M. C. Hutley, and N. Davies, "The manufacture of microlenses by melting photoresist," Meas. Sci. Technol. 1, 759-766 (1990).
[CrossRef]

Bardinal, V.

Bu, J.

Camps, T.

Carcenac, F.

Chang, C. Y.

Chang, J. H.

J. H. Chang, F. S. Cheng, C. C. Chao, Y. C. Weng, S. Y. Yang, and L. A. Wang, "Direct imprinting using soft mold and gas pressure for large area and curved surfaces," J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 23, 1687-1690 (2005).
[CrossRef]

Chang, S.-I.

Chang, W. L.

Chao, C. C.

J. H. Chang, F. S. Cheng, C. C. Chao, Y. C. Weng, S. Y. Yang, and L. A. Wang, "Direct imprinting using soft mold and gas pressure for large area and curved surfaces," J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 23, 1687-1690 (2005).
[CrossRef]

Chao, C. K.

C. P. Lin, H. Yang and C. K. Chao, "A new microlens array fabrication method using UV proximity printing," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 748-757 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Cheng, F. S.

J. H. Chang, F. S. Cheng, C. C. Chao, Y. C. Weng, S. Y. Yang, and L. A. Wang, "Direct imprinting using soft mold and gas pressure for large area and curved surfaces," J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 23, 1687-1690 (2005).
[CrossRef]

Cheong, W. C.

Ciou, J. R.

Conedera, V.

Daly, D.

D. Daly, R. F. Stevens, M. C. Hutley, and N. Davies, "The manufacture of microlenses by melting photoresist," Meas. Sci. Technol. 1, 759-766 (1990).
[CrossRef]

Daran, E.

Davies, N.

D. Daly, R. F. Stevens, M. C. Hutley, and N. Davies, "The manufacture of microlenses by melting photoresist," Meas. Sci. Technol. 1, 759-766 (1990).
[CrossRef]

Doucet, J. B.

Fu, Y. Q.

N. S. Ong, Y. H. Koh and Y.Q. Fu, "Microlens array produced using hot embossing process," Microelectron. Eng. 60 (2002) 365-379.
[CrossRef]

Guo, R.

He, M.

Hsieh, K. H.

Huang, L. S.

Huang, T. C.

Huang, W.

Hutley, M. C.

D. Daly, R. F. Stevens, M. C. Hutley, and N. Davies, "The manufacture of microlenses by melting photoresist," Meas. Sci. Technol. 1, 759-766 (1990).
[CrossRef]

Jiang, L. T.

Kim, D. S.

B. K. Lee, D. S. Kim and T. H. Kwon, "Replication of microlens arrays by injection molding", Microsystem Technologies," 10 (2004) 531-535.
[CrossRef]

Koh, Y. H.

N. S. Ong, Y. H. Koh and Y.Q. Fu, "Microlens array produced using hot embossing process," Microelectron. Eng. 60 (2002) 365-379.
[CrossRef]

Kudryashov, V.

Kwon, T. H.

B. K. Lee, D. S. Kim and T. H. Kwon, "Replication of microlens arrays by injection molding", Microsystem Technologies," 10 (2004) 531-535.
[CrossRef]

Lee, B. K.

B. K. Lee, D. S. Kim and T. H. Kwon, "Replication of microlens arrays by injection molding", Microsystem Technologies," 10 (2004) 531-535.
[CrossRef]

Leïchlé, T.

Levallois, C.

Li, J.

Lin, C. P.

C. P. Lin, H. Yang and C. K. Chao, "A new microlens array fabrication method using UV proximity printing," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 748-757 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Lin, L.

W. Pan, X. Shen, and L. Lin, "Micro-plastic lens array fabricated by a hot intrusion process," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 1063-1071 (2004).

Ngo, N. Q.

Ong, N. S.

N. S. Ong, Y. H. Koh and Y.Q. Fu, "Microlens array produced using hot embossing process," Microelectron. Eng. 60 (2002) 365-379.
[CrossRef]

Pan, W.

W. Pan, X. Shen, and L. Lin, "Micro-plastic lens array fabricated by a hot intrusion process," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 1063-1071 (2004).

Shen, X.

W. Pan, X. Shen, and L. Lin, "Micro-plastic lens array fabricated by a hot intrusion process," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 1063-1071 (2004).

Stevens, R. F.

D. Daly, R. F. Stevens, M. C. Hutley, and N. Davies, "The manufacture of microlenses by melting photoresist," Meas. Sci. Technol. 1, 759-766 (1990).
[CrossRef]

Vergnenègre, C.

Wang, L. A.

J. H. Chang, F. S. Cheng, C. C. Chao, Y. C. Weng, S. Y. Yang, and L. A. Wang, "Direct imprinting using soft mold and gas pressure for large area and curved surfaces," J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 23, 1687-1690 (2005).
[CrossRef]

Wei, P. K.

Weng, Y. C.

J. H. Chang, F. S. Cheng, C. C. Chao, Y. C. Weng, S. Y. Yang, and L. A. Wang, "Direct imprinting using soft mold and gas pressure for large area and curved surfaces," J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 23, 1687-1690 (2005).
[CrossRef]

Xia, A.

Xiao, S.

Yang, H.

C. P. Lin, H. Yang and C. K. Chao, "A new microlens array fabrication method using UV proximity printing," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 748-757 (2003).
[CrossRef]

Yang, S. Y.

Yoon, J.-B.

Yu, W. X.

Yuan, X. -C.

Yuan, X.-C.

Zhai, X.

J. Micromech. Microeng.

W. Pan, X. Shen, and L. Lin, "Micro-plastic lens array fabricated by a hot intrusion process," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 1063-1071 (2004).

C. P. Lin, H. Yang and C. K. Chao, "A new microlens array fabrication method using UV proximity printing," J. Micromech. Microeng. 13, 748-757 (2003).
[CrossRef]

J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A

J. H. Chang, F. S. Cheng, C. C. Chao, Y. C. Weng, S. Y. Yang, and L. A. Wang, "Direct imprinting using soft mold and gas pressure for large area and curved surfaces," J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 23, 1687-1690 (2005).
[CrossRef]

Meas. Sci. Technol.

D. Daly, R. F. Stevens, M. C. Hutley, and N. Davies, "The manufacture of microlenses by melting photoresist," Meas. Sci. Technol. 1, 759-766 (1990).
[CrossRef]

Microelectron. Eng.

N. S. Ong, Y. H. Koh and Y.Q. Fu, "Microlens array produced using hot embossing process," Microelectron. Eng. 60 (2002) 365-379.
[CrossRef]

Microsystem Technologies

B. K. Lee, D. S. Kim and T. H. Kwon, "Replication of microlens arrays by injection molding", Microsystem Technologies," 10 (2004) 531-535.
[CrossRef]

Opt. Express

X.-C. Yuan, W. X. Yu, N. Q. Ngo, and W. C. Cheong, "Cost-effective fabrication of microlenses on hybrid sol-gel glass with a high-energy beam-sensitive gray-scale mask," Opt. Express 10, 303-308 (2002).
[PubMed]

W. X. Yu, and X. -C. Yuan, "UV induced controllable volume growth in hybrid sol-gel glass for fabrication of a refractive microlens by use of a grayscale mask," Opt. Express 11, 2253-2258 (2003).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

S.-I. Chang, and J.-B. Yoon, "Shape-controlled, high fill-factor microlens arrays fabricated by a 3D diffuser lithography and plastic replication method," Opt. Express 12, 6366-6371 (2004).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

R. Guo, S. Xiao, X. Zhai, J. Li, A. Xia, and W. Huang, "Micro lens fabrication by means of femtosecond two photon photopolymerization," Opt. Express 14, 810-816 (2006).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

C. Y. Chang, S. Y. Yang, L. S. Huang, and K. H. Hsieh, "Fabrication of polymer microlens arrays using capillary forming with a soft mold of micro-holes array and UV-curable polymer," Opt. Express 14, 6253-6258 (2006).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

W. L. Chang, and P. K. Wei, "Fabrication of a close-packed hemispherical submicron lens array and its application in photolithography," Opt. Express 15, 6774-6783 (2007).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

V. Bardinal, E. Daran, T. Leïchlé, C. Vergnenègre, C. Levallois, T. Camps, V. Conedera, J. B. Doucet, and F. Carcenac, "Fabrication and characterization of microlens arrays using a cantilever-based spotter," Opt. Express 15, 6900-6907 (2007).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

L. T. Jiang, T. C. Huang, J. R. Ciou, C. Y. Chang, and S. Y. Yang, "Fabrication of plastic microlens arrays using hybrid extrusion rolling embossing with a metallic cylinder mold fabricated using dry film resist," Opt. Express 15, 12088-12094 (2007).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Opt. Lett.

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Figures (7)

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.

Schematic of the gas-assisted UV-curing embossing process for the fabrication of large area microlens array.

Fig. 2.
Fig. 2.

Photograph of the UV-LED array lamp.

Fig. 3.
Fig. 3.

OM image of the micro-holes array on the stainless steel stamper.

Fig. 4.
Fig. 4.

The observed photoelastic image from (a) central area and (b) side area of PMMA substrate.

Fig. 5.
Fig. 5.

The PMMA substrate (203mm×230mm×0.8 mm) with fabricated microlens array.

Fig. 6.
Fig. 6.

OM images and surface profile of the fabricated microlens array on PMMA substrate.

Fig. 7.
Fig. 7.

(a) Schematic setup for measuring the optical property of formed polymeric microlens array and (b) the light spots pattern of a randomly selected area of formed microlens array.

Tables (1)

Tables Icon

Table 1. Large-area uniformity of fabricated microlens array.

Metrics