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Analysis and Fabrication of Curved Multimorph Transducers That Undergo Bending and Twisting

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2 Author(s)
Pal, S. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Univ. of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA ; Huikai Xie

Difference in strains in the layers of a multimorph beam causes it to curl, thereby leading to transduction. Straight multimorph beams have been widely used for thermal, piezoelectric, and shape-memory-alloy-based transducers that undergo out-of-plane bending, but curved multimorph beams have not been explored much. In this paper, we report thermal transducers based on curved multimorphs that have a nonzero curvature in the plane of the substrate. The distinguishing feature of curved multimorphs is that they undergo both out-of-plane bending and twisting deformations. We report the small-deformation analysis of curved multimorphs. The analytical expressions greatly expand the design space for microelectromechanical systems engineers and can lead to novel devices, including micromirrors and infrared sensors. The closed-form expressions were validated against finite-element (FE) simulation and experimental results. Experimental verification was done by monitoring a curved electrothermal multimorph beam at different temperatures. Good agreement between the analysis and experiments has been observed in the small-deformation range. At large deformations, in-plane displacement becomes significant. FE simulations and experiments are used to study large deformations.

Published in:

Microelectromechanical Systems, Journal of  (Volume:21 ,  Issue: 5 )

Date of Publication:

Oct. 2012

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