Joule heating occurs in any conductor when current passes through it due to the resistance of the conductor. Semiconductor strain gauges in particular are very susceptible to such temperature changes as they can cause significant fluctuations in the resistance of the gauge itself. This is generally referred to as self-heating of the strain gauge. Self-heating effects are undesirable as they can drastically decrease the signal-to-noise ratio of the strain gauges. In order to improve the sensitivity of a strain gauge it is of interest to characterize the thermal effects of the current on the various geometries surrounding a strain gauge.
Project end date: 08/28/07