Demonstration of Alternative Fabrication Techniques for Robust MEMS Device

  • Published : 2006.08.01


This work describes efforts in the fabrication and testing of robust microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). Robustness is typically achieved by investigating non-silicon substrates and materials for MEMS fabrication. Some of the traditional MEMS fabrication techniques are applicable to robust MEMS, while other techniques are drawn from other technology areas, such as electronic packaging. The fabrication technologies appropriate for robust MEMS are illustrated through laminated polymer membrane based pressure sensor arrays. Each array uses a stainless steel substrate, a laminated polymer film as a suspended movable plate, and a fixed, surface micromachined back electrode of electroplated nickel. Over an applied pressure range from 0 to 34 kPa, the net capacitance change was approximately 0.14 pF. An important attribute of this design is that only the steel substrate and the pressure sensor inlet is exposed to the flow; i.e., the sensor is self-packaged.


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