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Sensors 2018, 18(11), 3842; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18113842

Tuneable Q-Factor of MEMS Cantilevers with Integrated Piezoelectric Thin Films

Institute of Sensor and Actuator Systems, TU Wien, 1040 Vienna, Austria
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Received: 2 September 2018 / Revised: 3 November 2018 / Accepted: 6 November 2018 / Published: 9 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cantilever Sensor)
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Abstract

In atomic force microscopes (AFM) a resonantly excited, micro-machined cantilever with a tip is used for sensing surface-related properties. When targeting the integration of AFMs into vacuum environments (e.g., for enhancing the performance of scanning electron microscopes), a tuneable Q-factor of the resonating AFM cantilever is a key feature to enable high speed measurements with high local resolution. To achieve this goal, in this study an additional mechanical stimulus is applied to the cantilever with respect to the stimulus provided by the macroscopic piezoelectric actuator. This additional stimulus is generated by an aluminum nitride piezoelectric thin film actuator integrated on the cantilever, which is driven by a phase shifted excitation. The Q-factor is determined electrically by the piezoelectric layer in a Wheatstone bridge configuration and optically verified in parallel with a laser Doppler vibrometer. Depending on the measurement technique, the Q-factor is reduced by a factor of about 1.9 (electrically) and 1.6 (optically), thus enabling the damping of MEMS structures with a straight-forward and cheap electronic approach. View Full-Text
Keywords: electronically tuneable Q-factor; MEMS cantilever; peak shaping; AlN; piezoelectric; phase shifted excitation; AFM; vacuum electronically tuneable Q-factor; MEMS cantilever; peak shaping; AlN; piezoelectric; phase shifted excitation; AFM; vacuum
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Fischeneder, M.; Oposich, M.; Schneider, M.; Schmid, U. Tuneable Q-Factor of MEMS Cantilevers with Integrated Piezoelectric Thin Films. Sensors 2018, 18, 3842.

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