Physical Sensors & Devices

Research that includes:

  • Silicon MEMS actuators: comb, electro-thermal, and plastic deformation
  • Precision electronic sensing and measurements of capacitive, frequency, and coulombic MEMS variables
  • Structures and architectures for gyroscopes, accelerometers, micro strain gauges for direct application to rigid structures e.g., steel, and levitated MEMS

BEB7: Electronic Interface for Micromachined Gyroscope Sensors

Vladimir Petkov

The goal of this project is to develop a high-resolution closed-loop sense interface for micromachined gyroscope sensors.

Project end date: 08/18/04

LWL21: Microfabricated Torsional Actuator by Self-Aligned Plastic Deformation

Jongbaeg Kim

The objective of this project is to develop vertically driven comb actuators with self-aligned comb sets using a novel yet simple fabrication process and apply it to optical MEMS devices.

Project end date: 08/18/04

APP91: Ultra High Shock Resistant Sensors

Ki Bang Lee

This research aims to develop ultra high shock resistant sensors that can be launched on a special high-speed projectile. A new set of MEMS RF and sensor components will be designed, fabricated, integrated, and tested in an environment characterized by extreme acceleration (150,000 to 300,000g). The special high-speed projectile will allow flat-trajectory, near-instantaneous placement of the MEMS RF and sensor components at distances in excess of 1000 m onto surfaces such as solid concrete.

Project end date: 08/26/04

BEB21: Background calibration techniques for digitally assisted ADC

Anshi Liang

Develop new background calibration techniques for low power digitally assisted Analog-to-Digital Converters (ADCs). The goal is achieve significant savings in convergence time. A proof-of-concept FPGA realization calibration module will be built for a 12-bit, 75-MS/s demonstration prototype previously developed by Boris Murmann.

Project end date: 01/20/05

KSJP29/JD: Floating Electro Mechanical Systems (FLEMS)

Jason Vaughn Clark

X Long-Range Goals The objectives of this project are to understand, characterize, and find useful applications for floating electromechanical systems. Various designs will be studied with a specialized finite element method with charge integral constraints.

Project end date: 02/03/05

JFB1: Scanning Probe Methods for the Characterization of Nanomechanical Resonators

Alvaro San Paulo
Xuchun Liu

Development of atomic force microscopy and laser interferometry methods for the electromechanical characterization of nanomechanical resonators.

Project end date: 02/03/05

BEB18: MEMS Strain Gauges on Steel: Electronic Interfaces for Resonant Sensors

Kenneth Wojciechowski

The objective of this research is to develop electronic interface circuits to measure strain in automobile machine elements with a silicon micromachined resonant sensor. The strain sensor is required to have a resolution of 0.1 microstrain over a range of +/- 1000 microstrain and a measurement bandwidth of 10kHz. The dimensions of the strained areas in the bearings are on the order of 100-200 microns and therefore gauge lengths of the strain sensor must be in this range. The smallest commercially available strain sensors have gauge lengths of around 1mm are too large and thus micro-...

LWL28: Bi-directional Electrothermal Electromagnetic Actuators and Relays

Lufeng Che

Micro relays powered by bi-directional electrothermal electromagnetic actuator has been designed, built and tested. Relays built using these actuators can have single pole double throw (SPDT) configuration. Bi-directional actuators can be used to make bi-stable relays, which only require power consumption during the switching operations. The relays built can switch both high current and high voltages. The off state resistance is over 100 Megaohm with a breakdown voltage exceeding 200V. The on state resistance is around 0.3 ohm can carry several amps before failure. The performance of...

BPN314: Biomimetic Infrared sensor based on the nanogap junction array

Jeonggi Seo

The research that will be conducted in this project is to study the phenomenon of IR detection in pyrophilous jewel beetles and then to implement a MEMS design in order to reach or exceed the thermal sensitivity of 20 mK, standardized detectivity (D*) of 10^8 and field-of-view of 180º for an uncooled photomechanic infrared sensor.

Project end date: 02/07/06

APP55: MEMS Strain Gauge on Steel: Selective Strain Isolation

I-yang Chen

This project aims to design strain isolation trenches into the sensor package such that strain may be selectively isolated in specific sections, and along specific directions thereby reducing the cross-axis sensitivity of the strain sensor. The particular sensor package is an encapsulated, resonating MEMS strain gauge specially designed to be direct-mounted on steel with a strain resolution of 0.1u-strain. To this end, a strain isolation structure was designed that rejects cross-axis strain while still maintaining axial strain fidelity. A test structure is being fabricated to apply...