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Design, fabrication and testing of a high performance silicon piezoresistive Z-axis accelerometer with proof mass-edge-aligned-flexures
, Jency J.G, Das S.
Published in Springer Science and Business Media LLC
Volume: 18
Issue: 1
Pages: 9 - 23
This paper presents design, fabrication and testing of a quad beam silicon piezoresistive Z-axis accelerometer with very low cross-axis sensitivity. The accelerometer device proposed in the present work consists of a thick proof mass supported by four thin beams (also called as flexures) that are connected to an outer supporting rim. Cross-axis sensitivity in piezoresistive accelerometers is an important issue particularly for high performance applications. In the present study, low cross-axis sensitivity is achieved by improving the device stability by placing the four flexures in line with the proof mass edges. Various modules of a finite element method based software called CoventorWare™ was used for design optimization. Based on the simulation results, a flexure thickness of 30 μm and a diffused resistor doping concentration of 5 × 10 18 atoms/cm 3 were fixed to achieve a high prime-axis sensitivity of 122 μV/Vg, low cross-axis sensitivity of 27 ppm and a relatively higher bandwidth of 2.89 kHz. The designed accelerometer was realized by a complementary metal oxide semiconductor compatible bulk micromachining process using a dual doped tetra methyl ammonium hydroxide etching solution. The fabricated accelerometer devices were tested up to 13 g static acceleration using a rate table. Test results of fabricated devices with 30 μm flexure thickness show an average prime axis sensitivity of 111 μV/Vg with very low cross-axis sensitivities of 0.652 and 0.688 μV/Vg along X-axis and Y-axis, respectively. © 2011 Springer-Verlag.
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