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Proceedings Paper

A cantilever-type electrostatic zipping actuator
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Paper Abstract

This paper discussed modeling, design, fabrication and characterization of a new cantilever-type electrostatic zipping actuator. The actuator was designed to achieve high displacements and fabricated using multi-layer polysilicon foundry fabrication process PolyMUMPS. The high out-of-plane displacement is to satisfy the requirements in specific optical applications. In this paper we presented the design considerations in displacement, electrostatic forces and electrostatic stability. The electrostatic force between the curved cantilever and the bottom electrode on the substrate pulls the cantilever down. With a warped cantilever, the force closes the gap from the anchor end and gradually the zipping effect actuates the entire cantilever without increasing the biasing voltages. Previous electrostatic zipper actuators require a thin layer of dielectric material on top of the bottom electrode to prevent electrical shorting. They may have an issue with electrical breakdown of the thin dielectric layer due to the film quality. We designed a new mechanical structure to avoid the electrical shorting problem without a layer of dielectric material. Our analysis and experimental results demonstrated that the proposed design can withstand high voltages without shorting and is capable of high deflection. The vertical displacements of different device configurations were found ranging from 30.4μm to 450μm while the actuation voltages varied in the range from 12V to 45.3V for complete actuation. The pull-in voltages for various configurations were analyzed and presented.

Paper Details

Date Published: 8 January 2007
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 6414, Smart Structures, Devices, and Systems III, 641421 (8 January 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.695959
Show Author Affiliations
Naresh Dhaubanjar, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington (United States)
Smitha M. N. Rao, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington (United States)
Ying Cai, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington (United States)
Dan Popa, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington (United States)
Mu Chiao, The Univ. of British Columbia (Canada)
J.-C. Chiao, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6414:
Smart Structures, Devices, and Systems III
Said F. Al-Sarawi, Editor(s)

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