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Special Issue "Microplasma Devices"

A special issue of Micromachines (ISSN 2072-666X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 June 2017

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Massood Tabib-Azar

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT 84112, USA
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Nano-electro-mechanical systems (NEMS); nano devices and molecular electronics; metrology tools microwave-AFM for bio-nano-info; novel fabrication techniques

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The main purpose of this Issue is to discuss through its invited and contributed articles, miniaturized plasma devices with applications in sensing, actuation, harsh environment signal processing, terahertz signal processing, material processing (deposition, etching and modification), and in medicine.

Plasmas offers many interesting properties that include very low resistance, an ability to carry very large current densities, offer partially charged beams for electro-magnetic field sensing and actuation, has unique ionized material-dependent photoemission for chemical analysis, the ability to decompose materials and biological tissues, bacteria and viruses, and to deposit and process materials. Plasmas come in many different forms: high density plasmas, low density plasmas, “dirty” plasmas, low pressure and high pressure plasmas, magnetized plasmas, to name a few.

Although in most cases plasma devices are quite large with today’s microelectronic devices standards, they do not have to be. There are some advantages in miniaturizing plasma devices that include lowering the operation voltages, integration with other devices or circuits, realizing addressable arrays, or simple arrays for energy management, parallel detection of different substances through their photoemission in a plasma array, plasma array devices to modify gas boundary conditions for propulsion, sensing and treatment, to name a few. Miniaturized plasma switches are extensively used in flashes and in many high power switching applications. Plasma displays are very popular for their very sharp images and visibility under direct sunlight.

In traveling and slow wave structures, charged plasmas can be used instead of electron beams to increase the device breakdown voltage and to take advantage of self-focusing nature of the plasmas to modify the need for magnetic field focusing that makes them bulky and heavy.

In medicine, plasmas are used for elimination of drug resistant bacteria, skin and tissue treatment, etc. Some have shown that plasma treatment results in faster healing of wounds.

We are inviting all the researchers in the wide area of micro-plasma devices to contribute to this Special Issue.

Prof. Dr. Massood Tabib-Azar
Guest Editor


Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. Papers will be published continuously (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are refereed through a peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Micromachines is an international peer-reviewed Open Access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs).


•    micro-plasma devices
•    microfabricated plasma devices
•    plasma switches
•    plasma sensors
•    plasma actuators

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle Fabrication of SiNx Thin Film of Micro Dielectric Barrier Discharge Reactor for Maskless Nanoscale Etching
Micromachines 2016, 7(12), 232; doi:10.3390/mi7120232
Received: 14 October 2016 / Revised: 24 November 2016 / Accepted: 29 November 2016 / Published: 14 December 2016
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The prevention of glow-to-arc transition exhibited by micro dielectric barrier discharge (MDBD), as well as its long lifetime, has generated much excitement across a variety of applications. Silicon nitride (SiNx) is often used as a dielectric barrier layer in DBD due
[...] Read more.
The prevention of glow-to-arc transition exhibited by micro dielectric barrier discharge (MDBD), as well as its long lifetime, has generated much excitement across a variety of applications. Silicon nitride (SiNx) is often used as a dielectric barrier layer in DBD due to its excellent chemical inertness and high electrical permittivity. However, during fabrication of the MDBD devices with multilayer films for maskless nano etching, the residual stress-induced deformation may bring cracks or wrinkles of the devices after depositing SiNx by plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD). Considering that the residual stress of SiNx can be tailored from compressive stress to tensile stress under different PECVD deposition parameters, in order to minimize the stress-induced deformation and avoid cracks or wrinkles of the MDBD device, we experimentally measured stress in each thin film of a MDBD device, then used numerical simulation to analyze and obtain the minimum deformation of multilayer films when the intrinsic stress of SiNx is −200 MPa compressive stress. The stress of SiNx can be tailored to the desired value by tuning the deposition parameters of the SiNx film, such as the silane (SiH4)–ammonia (NH3) flow ratio, radio frequency (RF) power, chamber pressure, and deposition temperature. Finally, we used the optimum PECVD process parameters to successfully fabricate a MDBD device with good quality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microplasma Devices)

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