17 May 2013 A Lorentz force actuated magnetic field sensor with capacitive read-out
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Abstract
We present a novel design of a resonant magnetic field sensor with capacitive read-out permitting wafer level production. The device consists of a single-crystal silicon cantilever manufactured from the device layer of an SOI wafer. Cantilevers represent a very simple structure with respect to manufacturing and function. On the top of the structure, a gold lead carries AC currents that generate alternating Lorentz forces in an external magnetic field. The free end oscillation of the actuated cantilever depends on the eigenfrequencies of the structure. Particularly, the specific design of a U-shaped structure provides a larger force-to-stiffness-ratio than standard cantilevers. The electrodes for detecting cantilever deflections are separately fabricated on a Pyrex glass-wafer. They form the counterpart to the lead on the freely vibrating planar structure. Both wafers are mounted on top of each other. A custom SU-8 bonding process on wafer level creates a gap which defines the equilibrium distance between sensing electrodes and the vibrating structure. Additionally to the capacitive read-out, the cantilever oscillation was simultaneously measured with laser Doppler vibrometry through proper windows in the SOI handle wafer. Advantages and disadvantages of the asynchronous capacitive measurement configuration are discussed quantitatively and presented by a comprehensive experimental characterization of the device under test.
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M. Stifter, M. Stifter, H. Steiner, H. Steiner, A. Kainz, A. Kainz, F. Keplinger, F. Keplinger, W. Hortschitz, W. Hortschitz, T. Sauter, T. Sauter, "A Lorentz force actuated magnetic field sensor with capacitive read-out", Proc. SPIE 8763, Smart Sensors, Actuators, and MEMS VI, 87632E (17 May 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2016761; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2016761
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