The LaserWriter system by MICROTECH is designed for the definition of planar geometries and for surface diagnostics, in applications where maximum resolutions down to 0.7 µm are required. The system transforms a laser beam into a controlled writing tool for photolithographic mask fabrication or for direct in situ processing on planar substrates. Besides microlithographic applications, its optical apparatus and substrate motion management are also well suited for surface inspection or diagnostics. Hence, the same machine can be used first for producing a pattern and later for inspecting the results. The patterns are generated by accurately moving the target (mask or substrate) underneath a focused and scanning laser beam with proper wavelength. The performance and cost of the system are optimised for research and development or small/medium productions.