21 May 2015 Experimental investigations of creep in gold RF-MEMS microstructures
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Lifetime prediction and reliability evaluation of micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) are influenced by permanent deformations caused by plastic strain induced by creep. Creep in microstructures becomes critical in those applications where permanent loads persist for long times and thermal heating induces temperature increasing respect to the ambient. Main goal of this paper is to investigate the creep mechanism in RF-MEMS microstructures by means of experiments. This is done firstly through the detection of permanent deformation of specimens and, then, by measuring the variation of electro-mechanical parameters (resonance frequency, pull-in voltage) that provide indirect evaluation of mechanical stiffness alteration from creep. To prevent the errors caused be cumulative heating of samples and dimensional tolerances, three specimens with the same nominal geometry have been tested per each combination of actuation voltage and temperature. Results demonstrated the presence of plastic deformation due to creep, combined with a component of reversible strain linked to the viscoelastic behavior of the material.
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Aurelio Somà, Aurelio Somà, Giorgio De Pasquale, Giorgio De Pasquale, Muhammad Mubasher Saleem, Muhammad Mubasher Saleem, } "Experimental investigations of creep in gold RF-MEMS microstructures", Proc. SPIE 9517, Smart Sensors, Actuators, and MEMS VII; and Cyber Physical Systems, 95170H (21 May 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2181071; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2181071


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