Low-voltage small-size double-arm MEMS actuator
The fabrication and characterisation of a double-arm cantilever-type metallic DC-contact MEMS actuator with low pull-down voltage are reported. Bi-layer TiW cantilevers with an internal stress gradient were fabricated using a microwave-compatible fabrication process. Owing to its small size, cantilever length (L=5-50m) and width (W=2-40m), i.e. ∼10-100 times smaller in lateral dimensions than a standard MEMS actuator, this actuator showed actuation voltages lower than 10 V. RF measurements of the 10m-wide actuators yielded an average insertion loss less than 1dB and isolation higher than 40dB up to 25GHz. The developed actuator is well suited for integration in reconfigurable microwave circuits and systems such as reconfigurable antennas and arrays. © 2009 The Institution of Engineering and Technology.