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Power-Last Module for MEMS Sensor Systems

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000183636D
Publication Date: 2009-May-29
Document File: 11 page(s) / 1M

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

This disclosure describes an energy storage system for MEMS scale devices. Providing power to MEMS sensors is often achieved by bonding discrete power sources to the MEMS device but seamless integration of the power source and the MEMS device can be challenging and limited integration can diminish device performance and drive up cost. As a result there is a need for a fully-integrated MEMS energy system suitable for use with a variety of MEMS sensors – this disclosure describes such a system. The system integrates a novel power generation system i.e., a MEMS-scale Organic Power System (MOPS), with existing microfabrication techniques and has several novel features: 1) Monolithic integration of power generation and power storage, 2) The MOPS design is fully compatible with standard microfabrication processes, 3) MOPS fabrication process is compatible with any fabrication process that allows processing to the backside of the wafer, 4) MOPS fabrication processes are mild and are not harmful to existing wafer devices, permitting fabrication after all other components, e.g. sensors, communication, 5) The MOPS system is fully integrated with the device 6) Ability to add MOPS at the end of device fabrication makes it compatible with a variety of MEMS devices.

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SEND COMPLETED DISCLOSURE TO: TECHNOLOGY INFORMATION OFFICE ATTN: Chris Harrison, MS RL55
HRL LABORATORIES, LLC Telephone No - 5459

8. SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

A. GIVE A BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF YOUR INVENTION, PARTICULARLY POINTING OUT WHAT IS BELIEVED TO BE NOVEL (THE "HEART" OF WHAT IS NEW).

This disclosure describes an energy storage system for MEMS scale devices. Providing power to MEMS sensors is often achieved by bonding discrete power sources to the MEMS device but seamless integration of the power source and the MEMS device can be challenging and limited integration can diminish device performance and drive up cost. As a result there is a need for a fully-integrated MEMS energy system suitable for use with a variety of MEMS sensors - this disclosure describes such a system. The system integrates a novel power generation system i.e., a MEMS-scale Organic Power System (MOPS), with existing microfabrication techniques and has several novel features:

1) Monolithic integration of power generation and power storage,
2) The MOPS design is fully compatible with standard microfabrication processes,
3) MOPS fabrication process is compatible with any fabrication process that allows processing to the backside of the wafer,
4) MOPS fabrication processes are mild and are not harmful to existing wafer devices, permitting fabrication after all other components, e.g. sensors, communication,
5) The MOPS system is fully integrated with the device
6) Ability to add MOPS at the end of device fabrication makes it compatible with a variety of MEMS devices.

B. EXPLAIN THE PURPOSE AND ADVANTAGES OF YOUR INVENTION. (WHAT WILL THE INVENTION DO BETTER THAN DONE PREVIOUSLY ?

The MEMS-scale Organic Power System (MOPS) is designed to be a power source for MEMS devices and is designed to be fabricated on the same host wafer as the MEMS device. In addition, this "power-last" module has the advantage of allowing fabrication of MOPS onto the device wafer after fabrication of all other components, resulting in a fully-integrated self-powered MEMS device. The MOPS module is designed to be highly versatile and compatible with a variety of sensor configurations. MOPS is both a power generation and power storage system and, unlike many other energy systems employed to power MEMS sensors, the MOPS design is fully compatible with microfabrication processes. This feature provides a unique advantage over other MEMS power systems, e.g., RF power . The MOPS design is expected to merge well with most microfabrication methods that allow post processing to the backside of the wafer including MEMS-first processes (e.g., epi-seal encapsulation process, CMOS-first, and interleaved processes). The module is designed to power a variety of sensors that monitor materials or the environment e.g., pressure, temperature, humidity, acceleration, yaw, strain, or chem...

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