Glass Wafers: How Optics, Computers and Photonics Get the Right Glass

Computers, optical and other technological manufacturing industries require glass wafers as a carrier substrate for safe fabricating of delicate products like thin silicon wafers.

Glass Carrier WafersGlass wafers are also essential to the semiconductor, electronics, and biotech industries in a variety of applications.

Making Glass Wafers

Glass wafers are highly technical products that demand a highly technical production process, often requiring their own proprietary technologies. Here’s how Swift Glass utilizes its expert team and technology to craft these complex products:

  1. 1. Material Selection

Glass wafers begin with the highest quality glass. We typically work with Borofloat, Borosilicate, Quartz, and Eagle XG, selecting the most consistent glass sheet from the best batches. Wafers are cut from these sheets to be further processed.

  1. 2. Shaping

The carefully selected and cut material is then ground to build out the wafer’s general shape.

  1. 3. Edges and Details

The edge profile of the wafer is machined to specifications with the use of diamond tools. For example, a wafer could be crafted with a flat or notch, depending upon the design, and with an edge profile that is either flat-ground or pencil-ground. The notch, if designed, serves as a precise locator.

  1. 4. Lapping

The product is lapped, and the profile accuracy gets checked.

  1. 5. Polishing

Both sides of the wafer are polished.

  1. 6. Inspection

Glass wafer inspection must be highly controlled in order to guaranteeprecision — the product is taken to a clean room with climate control, and the profile is recorded by laser.

The laser passes over the glass three times while another gauge reads the wafer’s total thickness variation (TTV). The larger the wafer, the more critical the TTV.

Glass Wafers from Swift Glass

After more than eighty years of glass manufacturing, the Swift Glass Team has developed highly specialized design and production capabilities. We are proud to take on the complex challenges that come with specialty products like glass wafers.

For more information about our processes, check out our library full of free resources.

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