Imec and Genalyte report disposable silicon photonics biosensor chips
The newly developed Si-photonics biosensor chips were realized at imec, as part of imec’s silicon photonics CMORE service. A bio-compatible passivation technology was developed on 200mm waferscale, the chips were tested in the field, and proven to meet Genalyte’s functional requirements with high yields. The chips contain up to 128 proprietary ring resonator sensors coated by Genalyte with application-specific chemistry to create very sensitive molecular detection capability. On-chip grating couplers are used to couple the infrared light from and to Genalyte’s diagnostic equipment.
Imec’s silicon photonics platform allows miniaturization of complex photonic functions on a single chip and a dense integration of photonics and electronics. The ability to use standard microelectronic CMOS manufacturing facilities and processes to realize optical functions makes silicon photonics commercially very attractive because of the potential to lower manufacturing costs and increased volume production. The high quality and reproducibility of the photonic waveguides and devices with features measuring 100-500nm requiring nm-scale accuracy are the keys to high yield.
The CMORE toolbox contains a wide variety of device technologies on 200mm (e.g. CMOS, Si-photonics, MEMS, image sensors, packaging …) as well as design, testing and reliability. Imec’s services range from feasibility studies over design and technology development to prototyping and low-volume manufacturing. Through its alliances, imec can offer a path to transfer the technology to a foundry for volume production. The company also offers Multi-Project Wafers access to its Silicon Photonics technology under ePIXfab at www.epixfab.eu through which Genalyte first made a proof-of-concept.
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