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Sensors 2013, 13(12), 16641-16656; doi:10.3390/s131216641

A Novel Comb Architecture for Enhancing the Sensitivity of Bulk Mode Gyroscopes

1
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, McGill University, Montréal, Québec H3A 0E9, Canada
2
Department of Computer Science, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal, Québec H3C 3P8, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 October 2013 / Revised: 27 November 2013 / Accepted: 3 December 2013 / Published: 4 December 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomechanical Sensors)
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Abstract

This work introduces a novel architecture for increasing the sensitivity of bulk mode gyroscopes. It is based on adding parallel plate comb drives to the points of maximum vibration amplitude, and tuning the stiffness of the combs. This increases the drive strength and results in a significant sensitivity improvement. The architecture is targeted for technologies with ~100 nm transducer gaps in order to achieve very high performance devices. In this work, this sensitivity enhancement concept was implemented in SOIMUMPs, a commercial relatively large gap technology. Prototypes were measured to operate at frequencies of ~1.5 MHz, with quality factors of ~33,000, at a 10 mTorr vacuum level. Measurements using discrete electronics show a rate sensitivity of 0.31 μV/°/s, corresponding to a capacitance sensitivity of 0.43 aF/°/s/electrode, two orders of magnitude higher than a similar design without combs, fabricated in the same technology. View Full-Text
Keywords: MEMS; resonant gyroscopes; bulk-mode; sensitivity enhancement MEMS; resonant gyroscopes; bulk-mode; sensitivity enhancement
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Elsayed, M.Y.; Nabki, F.; El-Gamal, M.N. A Novel Comb Architecture for Enhancing the Sensitivity of Bulk Mode Gyroscopes. Sensors 2013, 13, 16641-16656.

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