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Proceedings 2017, 1(4), 383; doi:10.3390/proceedings1040383

Servo-Assisted Position-Feedback MEMS Force Sensor with Tunable Sensitivity and Sub-Nanonewton Range

1
Department of Information Engineering, University of Brescia, Brescia, Italy
2
STMicroelectronics, Italy
3
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Politecnico di Milano, Milano, Italy
Presented at the Eurosensors 2017 Conference, Paris, France, 3–6 September 2017.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Published: 28 August 2017
Download PDF [1275 KB, uploaded 28 August 2017]

Abstract

A Micro Electro-Mechanical System (MEMS) that allows to measure an external force applied to a probe tip exploiting an electrical servo-assisted mechanism based on position feedback is presented. The sensor architecture keeps the position of the probe tip fixed by driving a pair of variable-area electrostatic actuators in a feedback loop controlled by a variable-gap capacitive sensor. By adjusting specific loop parameters, the force sensitivity can be finely tuned electrically. Sub-nanonewton measurement range is achieved with high flexibility in setting the tip working point, making the system promising for measuring forces generated by living biological cells.
Keywords: servo-assisted force sensor; MEMS; sub-nanonewton range; tunable sensitivity servo-assisted force sensor; MEMS; sub-nanonewton range; tunable sensitivity
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Nastro, A.; Ferrari, M.; Russo, A.-L.; Ardito, R.; Ferrari, V. Servo-Assisted Position-Feedback MEMS Force Sensor with Tunable Sensitivity and Sub-Nanonewton Range. Proceedings 2017, 1, 383.

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