- Reduced-order modelling, circuit-level design and SOI fabrication of microelectromechanical resonators

- del Tin, Laura <1979>

- ING-INF/01 Elettronica

- This thesis deals with two important research aspects concerning radio frequency (RF) microresonators and switches. First, a new approach for compact modeling and simulation of these devices is presented. Then, a combined process flow for their simultaneous fabrication on a SOI substrate is proposed. Compact models for microresonators and switches are extracted by applying mathematical model order reduction (MOR) to the devices finite element (FE) description in ANSYS cÂ° . The behaviour of these devices includes forms of nonlinearities. However, an approximation in the creation of the FE model is introduced, which enables the use of linear model order reduction. Microresonators are modeled with the introduction of transducer elements, which allow for direct coupling of the electrical and mechanical domain. The coupled system element matrices are linearized around an operating point and reduced. The resulting macromodel is valid for small signal analysis around the bias point, such as harmonic pre-stressed analysis. This is extremely useful for characterizing the frequency response of resonators. Compact modelling of switches preserves the nonlinearity of the device behaviour. Nonlinear reduced order models are obtained by reducing the number of nonlinearities in the system and handling them as input to the system. In this way, the system can be reduced using linear MOR techniques and nonlinearities are introduced directly in the reduced order model. The reduction of the number of system nonlinearities implies the approximation of all distributed forces in the model with lumped forces. Both for microresonators and switches, a procedure for matrices extraction has been developed so that reduced order models include the effects of electrical and mechanical pre-stress. The extraction process is fast and can be done automatically from ANSYS binary files. The method has been applied for the simulation of several devices both at devices and circuit level. Simulation results have been compared with full model simulations, and, when available, experimental data. Reduced order models have proven to conserve the accuracy of finite element method and to give a good description of the overall device behaviour, despite the introduced approximations. In addition, simulation is very fast, both at device and circuit level. A combined process-flow for the integrated fabrication of microresonators and switches has been defined. For this purpose, two processes that are optimized for the independent fabrication of these devices are merged. The major advantage of this process is the possibility to create on-chip circuit blocks that include both microresonators and switches. An application is, for example, aswitched filter bank for wireless transceiver. The process for microresonators fabrication is characterized by the use of silicon on insulator (SOI) wafers and on a deep reactive ion etching (DRIE) step for the creation of the vibrating structures in single-crystal silicon and the use of a sacrificial oxide layer for the definition of resonator to electrode distance. The fabrication of switches is characterized by the use of two different conductive layers for the definition of the actuation electrodes and by the use of a photoresist as a sacrificial layer for the creation of the suspended structure. Both processes have a gold electroplating step, for the creation of the resonators electrodes, transmission lines and suspended structures. The combined process flow is designed such that it conserves the basic properties of the original processes. Neither the performance of the resonators nor the performance of the switches results affected by the simultaneous fabrication. Moreover, common fabrication steps are shared, which allows for cheaper and faster fabrication.

- 2007-03-27

- Doctoral Thesis

- PeerReviewed

- application/pdf

urn:nbn:it:unibo-447

del Tin, Laura (2007) Reduced-order modelling, circuit-level design and SOI fabrication of microelectromechanical resonators, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum UniversitÃ di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Tecnologie dell'informazione