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Pull-in/out analysis of nano/microelectromechanical switches with defective oxide layers

Summary: Pull-in/out analysis of nano/microelectromechanical switches
with defective oxide layers
Yang Xu and N. R. Alurua
Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,
Urbana, Illinois 61801, USA
Received 17 April 2009; accepted 28 July 2009; published online 21 August 2009
We investigate the effect of surface and interior defects such as vacancies and broken bonds on the
performance of nano/microelectromechanical N/MEMS switches. By combining multiscale
electrostatic analysis with mechanical analysis, we compute the capacitance-voltage and pull-in/out
voltages of N/MEMS switches in the presence of defects in the dielectric oxide layer. Our results
indicate that both surface and interior defects can change the pull-in/out voltages leading to
significant voltage offsets. These voltage offsets can lead to an eventual failure of the N/MEMS
switch. 2009 American Institute of Physics. DOI: 10.1063/1.3211111
One of the popular applications of nano/microelectro-
mechanical systems N/MEMS is rf switches, which are re-
quired to operate at high frequencies for millions of cycles.1
During each cycle of operation, the moving electrode makes
a mechanical contact with the thin dielectric e.g., the oxide
layer and this can generate defects on the surface and inside
the dielectric. The presence of these defects can lead to


Source: Aluru, Narayana R. - Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


Collections: Engineering; Materials Science