Performance of thin film silicon MEMS on flexible plastic substrates

Patil, S.B. , Chu, V. and Conde, J.P. (2008) Performance of thin film silicon MEMS on flexible plastic substrates. Sensors and Actuators A: Physical, 144(1), pp. 201-206. (doi:10.1016/j.sna.2007.12.022)

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The fabrication and characterization of thin film silicon MEMS microbridges on flexible polyethylene terephthalate substrates are described. Surface micromachining using an aluminum sacrificial layer and a maximum processing temperature of 110 °C was used for device fabrication. These microbridges are electrostatically actuated and their deflection at resonance and at low frequencies is measured optically. Quasi-DC deflection with a quadratic dependence of the actuation voltage is observed, and resonance frequencies up to 2 MHz and quality factors of around 500 are measured in vacuum. Bending measurements are performed by subjecting these devices to tensile and compressive strain. The low frequency response (bridge deflection as a function of the applied voltage) was measured in air before bending and after every bending step. Under tensile strain, 16.6% of the devices survive the maximum bending with a radius of curvature of 1 cm, equivalent to a tensile strain 1.25%. In contrast, for compressive strain, 50% of the devices survive the bending corresponding to a radius of curvature of −0.5 cm, equivalent to a compressive strain of −2.5%. Thin film silicon microresonators on flexible plastic substrates can withstand more compressive strain than tensile.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Patil, Dr Samadhan
Authors: Patil, S.B., Chu, V., and Conde, J.P.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Electronics and Nanoscale Engineering
Journal Name:Sensors and Actuators A: Physical
ISSN (Online):1873-3069
Published Online:04 January 2008

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