Three-Terminal Latching Micromechanical Switch
Original Publication Date: 1987-Nov-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-02
Single crystal silicon is being increasingly employed in a number of new products for its excellent mechanical [*], rather than its well established electronic, properties. Processing techniques, such as anisotropic etching, allow the high-precision fabrication of micromechanical structures used, for example, in pressure transducers, print heads or voltage- controlled current switches. This article describes a three-terminal latching micromechanical switch, as shown in the figure. The switch comprises a single-crystal silicon cantilever beam 1 carrying three electrodes of different functions: two electrodes 2 for electrostatic deflection of the beam and a contacting electrode 3, shaped as a bar in this case, which switches current circuit 4, using, for example, contact studs 5.