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01.10.2011 | Technical Paper | Ausgabe 10-11/2011

Microsystem Technologies 10-11/2011

Coupled effects of gold electroplating and electrochemical discharge machining processes on the performance improvement of a capacitive accelerometer

Zeitschrift:
Microsystem Technologies > Ausgabe 10-11/2011
Autoren:
A. Ravi Sankar, V. Swathi Sree Bindu, S. Das

Abstract

Coupled effects of an electroplated gold layer and damper holes drilled by Electro Chemical Discharge Machining (ECDM) process on the performance improvement of a quad beam capacitive accelerometer is presented in this paper. A simple quad beam-proof mass configuration with its beams located symmetrically at the centre of all the edges of the proof mass and connected to an outer supporting frame is considered in the present study. For a fixed damping ratio, prime-axis sensitivity of the sensor is increased by the damper holes whereas an electroplated gold layer improves the prime-axis sensitivity, cross-axis sensitivity, and Brownian Noise Equivalent Acceleration (BNEA). Moreover, the increased weight of the proof mass due to an electroplated gold layer further reduces the damping of the device which in turn helps to increase the prime-axis sensitivity more. A new figure of merit called Performance Factor (PF), defined as the ratio of the product of the prime-axis sensitivity and resonant frequency to the cross-axis sensitivity at a fixed damping ratio of 0.7 is used as a quantitative index to evaluate the performance improvement caused by the coupled effects of gold electroplating and ECDM processes. Simulation results show that for a device with damper holes of 8 μm diameter and electroplated gold layer of dimensions 3,000 μm × 3,000 μm × 20 μm, the prime-axis sensitivity is increased by more than 500 times, rotational cross-axis sensitivity and BNEA are reduced by around 10 and 30%, respectively and the PF is improved by around 482 times at a fixed damping ratio of 0.7.

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