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Post-released Assembly Method for Micro-electrostatic Actuators

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000122417D
Original Publication Date: 1991-Dec-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Apr-04
Document File: 3 page(s) / 86K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Furuhata, T: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

Disclosed is a method for improving the operational characteristics of micro-electrostatic actuators. A new post-release assembly technique is used. The improvements are lower operational voltage and better linearity between the square of the applied voltage and the displacement.

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Post-released Assembly Method for Micro-electrostatic Actuators

      Disclosed is a method for improving the operational
characteristics of micro-electrostatic actuators. A new post-release
assembly technique is used. The improvements are lower operational
voltage and better linearity between the square of the applied
voltage and the displacement.

      Fig. 1 shows a top view of the electrostatic actuator. See
[1,2] for a description of its fabrication and operation. Pads 1
(shaded gray in this figure) are fixed to the substrate, and all thin
beams 2 are floating and free to move. The actuator can move right or
left in this figure. Note that it can produce a large force only when
the comb-like electrodes of the moving part 3 are inserted into the
electrodes of the fixed part 4. After release, the electrodes are not
inserted, as in this figure, and the actuator cannot produce large
force.

      In the present invention, a new method of realizing this
initial insertion is proposed. Fig. 2 illustrates this method (which
shows the rectangular area indicated by the dotted lines in Fig. 1).
Fig. 2(a) shows the position of the actuator just after release.
First, a voltage V is applied between the pad and the moving part. An
electrostatic force F is produced between these two parts, and it
pulls the beam of the moving part. When the deflection becomes large
enough to touch the pad, the current flows and heat is generated at
the contact point. As a result, the two pa...