Investigation of Electrostatic Cantilever-Type Micromechanical Actuator
Electrostatic microswitch and its fabrication technology have been developed for the first time in Lithuania, at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU). The microdevices were produced by using a nickel surface micromachining process. The microswitch consists of a cantilevered nickel structure suspended over the bottom electrodes. The width of the structure is 30 μm, thickness - 2 μm and length ranges from 67 to 150 μm. Implementation of microswitches as a substitute for the present solid-state switching devices poses many problems. In particular higher actuation voltages, lower switching speed and a reduced lifetime are considered to be among the most significant ones. With the aim of improving these parameters a finite element model is currently developed that takes into account not only microscale-specific electrostatic actuation and air damping effects but also includes the bouncing phenomena. Experimental studies of electrical and dynamic characteristics were also carried out with the purpose of model validation and correction. The paper presents initial results of theoretical modal and air damping analysis as well it shows the first attempts to measure vibration modes of the cantilever structure of the microswitch using Laser Doppler vibrometer.
Nin Bizys, Andrejus Henrikas Marcinkevicius
R. Dauksevicius et al., "Investigation of Electrostatic Cantilever-Type Micromechanical Actuator", Solid State Phenomena, Vol. 113, pp. 179-184, 2006