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Proceedings Paper

Vertical electrostatic force in MEMS cantilever IR sensor
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Paper Abstract

A MEMS cantilever IR detector that repetitively lifts from the surface under the influence of a saw-tooth electrostatic force, where the contact duty cycle is a measure of the absorbed IR radiation, is analyzed. The design is comprised of three parallel conducting plates. Fixed buried and surface plates are held at opposite potential. A moveable cantilever is biased the same as the surface plate. Calculations based on energy methods with position-dependent capacity and electrostatic induction coefficients demonstrate the upward sign of the force on the cantilever and determine the force magnitude. 2D finite element method calculations of the local fields confirm the sign of the force and determine its distribution across the cantilever. The upward force is maximized when the surface plate is slightly larger than the other two. The electrostatic repulsion is compared with Casimir sticking force to determine the maximum useful contact area. MEMS devices were fabricated and the vertical displacement of the cantilever was observed in a number of experiments. The approach may be applied also to MEMS actuators and micromirrors.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 June 2014
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 9070, Infrared Technology and Applications XL, 90701U (24 June 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2052355
Show Author Affiliations
Imen Rezadad, Univ. of Central Florida (United States)
Javaneh Boroumand Azad, Univ. of Central Florida (United States)
Evan M. Smith, Univ. of Central Florida (United States)
Ammar Alhasan, Univ. of Central Florida (United States)
Robert E. Peale, Univ. of Central Florida (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9070:
Infrared Technology and Applications XL
Bjørn F. Andresen; Gabor F. Fulop; Charles M. Hanson; Paul R. Norton, Editor(s)

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