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As nanostructures become smaller, the electrostatic sensitivity increases, leading to new failure mechanisms. In many new electrostatically actuated devices, electric forces lead to the motion of structural elements. Electrostatically actuated devices, magnetic recording devices, photomasks, RF switches, and micromachines have air gaps, which can lead to a breakdown across surfaces and in the air gap; the failure mechanism can lead to both latent and functional failures of the structure. Significant challenges are ahead of us in providing protection to these nanostructures from electrostatics.