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Many microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) devices possess charged capacitor structures where the suspension system allows relative electrode motion due to internal or external stimuli. When such a device is subjected to external mechanical vibrations present in a harsh operating environment, unwanted movement between the capacitor plates can generate a noise current which is injected into the connected circuitry. This paper analyzes this phenomenon and presents a model for the dynamics of a MEMS device with capacitive plates experiencing relative motion due to external stimuli. A Fourier series expansion of the current is developed to characterize the frequency content of the signal in closed form for a given vibration frequency, and simulation and experimental results are presented.
Date of Publication: July 2011