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Fully integrated electrothermal multidomain modeling of RF MEMS switches

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4 Author(s)
Jensen, Brian D. ; Michigan Univ., Ann Arbor, MI, USA ; Saitou, K. ; Volakis, J.L. ; Kurabayashi, Katsuo

RF MEMS switches have demonstrated excellent performance. However, before such switches can be fully implemented, they must demonstrate high reliability and robust power-handling capability. Numerical simulation is a vital part of design to meet these goals. This paper demonstrates a fully integrated electrothermal model of an RF MEMS switch which solves for RF current and switch temperature. The results show that the beam temperature increases with either higher input power or increased frequency. The simulation data are used to predict switch failure due to temperature-related creep and self pull-in over a wide range of operating frequency (0.1-40 GHz) and power input (0-10 W). Self pull-in is found to be the dominant failure mechanism for an example geometry.

Published in:

Microwave and Wireless Components Letters, IEEE  (Volume:13 ,  Issue: 9 )