Alternative Actuation and Detection Principles for Resonating Cantilevers

Alexander Grigorov

    Research output: Book/ReportPh.D. thesisResearch

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    Micro-electro mechanical systems (MEMS) are an emerging technology with a big potential for commercial applications in for general and biochemical sensing and biomolecular detection. Cantilever sensors are and existing MEMS concept that can be used for sensing and detection by either static surface stress detection, induced by a bimolecular interactions, or by mass-detection using resonance detection.

    The goal of this research has been to invent, discover and research alternative actuation and detection principles for resonating cantilevers.

    In our research, we adhered to fixed set of research values that we believe would make its products commercially competitive. We researched only planar, one mask devices, strove to limit the number of processing steps and aimed for device designs that use as little as possible external equipment in the form of electronics, for field measurements.

    We invented a new dynamic electro-thermal actuation principle and researched its performance experimentally and theoretically. A device that is actuated using the above principle was then characterized using laser/optical detection and we performed basic mass measurements.

    We discovered a new detection principle (rupture detection) to be used in conjunction with an electro-thermally actuated cantilever, performed resonant frequency detection and performed basic characterization of the new detection method.

    General research into resonant MEMS devices that are not plain cantilevers was also attempted and yielded a device that is actuating.

    In order to improve our existing device designs we then made a transition from UV lithography fabrication to electron beam lithography fabrication. This fabrication method is expensive depending on writing time, so we strove to reduce this with innovative processing solutions such as dot patterning and outline writing. We researched metal fabrication of suspended structures
    and invented a new process involving top layer peel-of an angled deposition. We applied this process to fabrication of beam structures that have Z-shaped, U-shaped, and rectangular cross sections.

    The novel structures and process were than used for system level integration and possible functionalization of devices for static and dynamic measurements using solid and suspended channels, spotting, and capillary action to make various fluids flow along.
    Original languageEnglish
    PublisherTechnical University of Denmark
    Number of pages135
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2006

    Cite this

    Grigorov, A. (2006). Alternative Actuation and Detection Principles for Resonating Cantilevers. Technical University of Denmark.