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25 March 2003 Micromachined poly-SiGe bolometer arrays for infrared imaging and spectroscopy
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The state-of-the-art characteristics of micromachined polycrystalline SiGe microbolometer arrays are reported. An average NETD of 85 mK at a time constant of 14 ms is already achievable on typical self-supported 50 μm pixels in a linear 64-element array. In order to reach these values, the design optimization was performed based on the performance characteristics of linear 32-, 64- and 128-element arrays of 50-, 60- and 75-μm-pixel bolometers on several detector lots. The infrared and thermal modeling accounting for the read-out properties and self-heating effect in bolometers resulted in improved designs and competitive NETD values of 80 mK on 50 μm pixels in a 160x128 format at standard frame rates and f-number of 1. In parallel, the TCR-to-1/f noise ratio and the mechanical design of the pixels were improved making poly-SiGe a good candidate for a low-cost uncooled thermal array. The technological CMOS-based process possesses an attractive balance between characteristics and price, and allows the micromachining of thin structures, less than 0.2 μm. The resistance and TCR non-uniformity with σ/μ better than 0.2% combined with 99.93% yield are demonstrated. The first lots of fully processed linear arrays have already come from the IMEC process line and the results of characterization are presented. Next year, the first linear and small 2D arrays will be introduced on the market.
© (2003) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Vladimir N. Leonov, Natalia A. Perova, Piet De Moor, Bert Du Bois, Claus Goessens, Bob Grietens, Agnes Verbist, Chris A. Van Hoof, and Jan P. Vermeiren "Micromachined poly-SiGe bolometer arrays for infrared imaging and spectroscopy", Proc. SPIE 4945, MEMS/MOEMS: Advances in Photonic Communications, Sensing, Metrology, Packaging and Assembly, (25 March 2003);

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