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High-resolution micromachined interferometric accelerometer

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7 Author(s)
Cooper, E.B. ; Media Laboratory, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139 ; Post, E.R. ; Griffith, S. ; Levitan, J.
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We demonstrate a promising type of microfabricated accelerometer that is based on the optical interferometer. The interferometer consists of surface-micromachined interdigital fingers that are alternately attached to a proof mass and support substrate. Illuminating the fingers with coherent light generates a series of diffracted optical beams. Subangstrom displacements between the proof mass and frame are detected by measuring the intensity of a diffracted beam. The structure is fabricated with a two-mask silicon process and detected with a standard laser diode and photodetector. We estimate that the minimum detectable acceleration is six orders of magnitude below the acceleration of gravity, i.e., 2

μg/ Hz
in a 1 Hz bandwidth centered at 650 Hz. © 2000 American Institute of Physics.

Published in:

Applied Physics Letters  (Volume:76 ,  Issue: 22 )