8 March 2014 A novel high pressure, high temperature vessel used to conduct long-term stability measurements of silicon MEMS pressure transducers
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The need to quantify and to improve long-term stability of pressure transducers is a persistent requirement from the aerospace sector. Specifically, the incorporation of real-time pressure monitoring in aircraft landing gear, as exemplified in Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS), has placed greater demand on the pressure transducer for improved performance and increased reliability which is manifested in low lifecycle cost and minimal maintenance downtime through fuel savings and increased life of the tire. Piezoresistive (PR) silicon MEMS pressure transducers are the primary choice as a transduction method for this measurement owing to their ability to be designed for the harsh environment seen in aircraft landing gear. However, these pressure transducers are only as valuable as the long-term stability they possess to ensure reliable, real-time monitoring over tens of years. The “heart” of the pressure transducer is the silicon MEMS element, and it is at this basic level where the long-term stability is established and needs to be quantified. A novel High Pressure, High Temperature (HPHT) vessel has been designed and constructed to facilitate this critical measurement of the silicon MEMS element directly through a process of mechanically “floating” the silicon MEMS element while being subjected to the extreme environments of pressure and temperature, simultaneously. Furthermore, the HPHT vessel is scalable to permit up to fifty specimens to be tested at one time to provide a statistically significant data population on which to draw reasonable conclusions on long-term stability. With the knowledge gained on the silicon MEMS element, higher level assembly to the pressure transducer envelope package can also be quantified as to the build-effects contribution to long-term stability in the same HPHT vessel due to its accommodating size. Accordingly, a HPHT vessel offering multiple levels of configurability and robustness in data measurement is presented, along with 10 year long-term stability results.
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David Wisniewiski, David Wisniewiski, "A novel high pressure, high temperature vessel used to conduct long-term stability measurements of silicon MEMS pressure transducers", Proc. SPIE 9061, Sensors and Smart Structures Technologies for Civil, Mechanical, and Aerospace Systems 2014, 90613W (8 March 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2044882; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2044882

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