Polymer-based magnetic microactuators have been fabricated with hot embossing technique and layer-by-layer (LbL) nano self-assembly. Silicon molds are fabricated with conventional UV lithography and wet etching techniques. Hot embossing is used to transfer the patterns from silicon molds to polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) sheets. The overall processing time for the pattern transfer is less than 20 min. Low-cost devices with massive and rapid replication can be fabricated. Six layers of magnetic iron oxide (Fe 2O 3) nanoparticles are LbL self-assembled on the PMMA surface as the magnetically sensitive material. Positive photoresist PR1813 is used as the sacrificial layer to protect the gold electrode on the back side of the membrane. LbL nano self-assembly technique provides a simple method to obtain the magnetic film with low cost, short processing time, simple fabrication steps at room temperature. The volume of the magnetic material can be precisely controlled by the number of nano-assembled iron oxide layers. The mechanical, electrical, and magnetic properties of the microactuator are characterized by a laser interferometer. The natural frequency of the actuator is approximately 151 Hz; and the maximum deflection amplitude is about 34 nm. At all frequencies, the increase of the magnetic field increases the deflection amplitude which is in agreement with the theoretical equation.
- Hot embossing
- Layer-by-layer (LbL) nano self-assembly
- Polymer magnetic microactuator