Making a photomask

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Revision as of 09:09, 8 April 2010 by Richard Smith (talk | contribs) (How to order)

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Creating a photomask

This is a simple guide on the steps required to make a photomask.

If you are intending to use the mask aligner in SIOS then the mask size that you require is 4x4inch and your design must take into account the aperture of the aligner which is approximately 3.5 Inches in diameter.

The design of the mask can be layed out using any cad type package but we usually use dwf/dwg formats, and this can be made with qcad in linux or autocad in windows. Autocad 2005 is available through Microsoft Application Virtualization (access may require an email to IS asking to be added to the permitted user list). There are some important rules to obey when doing your design.

  • Do not go too close to the edge of the mask, eg. Leave a 5-10mm gap from the edge.
  • Try to align features on a grid, this makes it easier for the machine that writes the mask.
  • The most detailed features (requiring the highest resolution) should go into the centre of the mask.
  • Work radially outwards with increasing feature size from the centre

The company we use for producing photomasks is They have a good website covering what services they offer and a price calculator. A local copy of the most recent design guide for photomasks is available here. (link to local copy pdf date it)

How to order

Fill in the online form to order a mask, with all the setting you require,make sure you tick the box asking for a proof, do not submit it, print it out. Fill in an EEE order from using the price from the online calculator for the options chosen in the printed form. take these to Jo Mee who will complete the order online.

When you receive an order confirmation email from EEE or JDphotomask, you can then email them your drawing file specify how the final image should be made. for example, what should be transparent, which layers to use etc.

Once they have checked your file you will receive a pdf proof of your design, this has to be checked and an email confirmation to go ahead with the design needs to be sent. They will then make your design and send it to you.

Checking requirements

They can be contacted by

they are generally very helpful.