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Localized suspended micro-heater structure using dry etching for sensing and actuation application

Subhani, KN and Khandare, S and N, V and Bhat, KN (2022) Localized suspended micro-heater structure using dry etching for sensing and actuation application. In: Journal of Manufacturing Processes, 83 . pp. 281-289.

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jmapro.2022.08.056


In this paper, we present the results of a study encompassing design, simulation and fabrication of suspended meander micro-structure, which will form the basis of different types of sensors in various applications such as vacuum gauge, mass flow sensor, and thermal accelerometer. In this research we compare the released approach of suspended structure and unreleased approach of design of micro-heater to provide guidance to optimize and choose the fabrication approach for localized heating or substrate heating. The finite element modeling carried out using COMSOL Multiphysics predicts electrical and thermal behavior of Joules heating effect in the stationery and time-dependent study with the tolerance of <8 %. The material selected in the fabrication process was LPCVD silicon nitride which can provide high thermal stability and high mechanical strength. The device is fabricated using a dry etching technique with very few steps. Further by characterizing these devices, we demonstrate experimentally that the suspended microstructure with released approach is able to heat upto the temperature of 440 °C at the power consumption of only 36 mW with the response time of only about 1 ms. This “fully released” miniaturized meander structure without any intermittent support leads to fast response, high sensitivity and low power consumption.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Journal of Manufacturing Processes
Publisher: Elsevier Ltd
Additional Information: The copyright for this article belongs to the Elsevier Ltd.
Keywords: Air navigation; Dry etching; Fabrication; Heating equipment; Microstructure; Silicon nitride; Substrates; Wet etching, Design simulations; Localised; Localized micro-heater; Mass flow sensors; Micro-structures; Microheater; Serpentine structure; Suspended structure; Thermal accelerometers; Vacuum gauges, Finite element method
Department/Centre: Division of Interdisciplinary Sciences > Centre for Nano Science and Engineering
Date Deposited: 06 Oct 2022 11:19
Last Modified: 06 Oct 2022 11:19
URI: https://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/77221

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