Microfabrication of High Quality 3-D Structures Using Wafer-Level Glassblowing of Fused Quartz and Ultra Low Expansion Glasses

Tech ID: 25033 / UC Case 2013-014-0

Brief Description

Micro-glassblowing MEMS fabrication process for low expansion and low loss materials

Full Description

This invention is a micro-glassblowing based MEMS process for low expansion, low internal loss materials such as Titania Silicate Glass (TSG) and fused quartz.The glassblowing process includes methods for fabrication of 3-D wineglass resonators, tine structures on the glassblown resonators, and electrode structures used for excitation and pick-off in MEMS 3-D wineglass and spherical resonators.

The fabrication process involves etching of fused quartz substrate wafers, bonding of TSG or fused quartz device layer onto the fused quartz substrate, glassblowing at extremely high temperature (~1700°C) and finally etching or cutting the glassblown structure to create a 3 -D wineglass micro-device. Frequency trimming is done using tine structures attached to the resonator. Electrostatic transduction is accomplished through various electrode structures. Optical resonator application is accomplished through coupling a light source into the shell of the glass structure, allowing it to circulate along the perimeter of the device, effectively creating optical resonance.

Conventional high performance gyroscopes and resonators are fabricated in macro-scale using precision machining techniques. This results in large devices, large power consumption, and high cost. At the same time, conventional MEMS devices, while small and low power, are limited to 2-D architectures and have poor performance. The invention aims to bridge the gap by enabling high volume and low cost manufacturing of ultra-high quality 3-D MEMS devices using advanced materials, which are not amenable to conventional MEMS fabrication.

Suggested uses

  • Fabrication of extremely high performance MEMS resonators (high Q-factor, symmetry)


  • Order of magnitude smaller size, hence the opportunity to use in handheld or mobile applications
  • Lower power consumption
  • Significantly lower cost due to batch fabrication technique

Patent Status

Country Type Number Dated Case
United States Of America Issued Patent 9,429,428 08/30/2016 2013-014
United States Of America Issued Patent 9,139,417 09/22/2015 2013-014

Lead Inventor

Andrei Shkel
Professor, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Henry Samueli School of Engineering
University of California, Irvine



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  • Senkal, Doruk
  • Shkel, Andrei M.
  • Trusov, Alexander A.

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