Scalable electrothermal MEMS actuator for optical fibre alignment

R. Syms, H. Zou, J. Yao, D.G. Uttamchandani, J. Stagg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

49 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A new geometry of high-force electrothermal actuator is demonstrated using microelectromechanical systems technology. The actuator consists of two sets of inclined, parallel, suspended beams, which are tethered at one end and linked together at the other. The first set is divided into two halves, which are connected in series and heated electrically. The second set acts as a tether for the first, so that differential thermal expansion gives rise to a lateral deflection. The design can be scaled easily to increase the actuation force, which is sufficient to deflect a cantilevered optical fibre. A bi-directional fibre alignment device is formed from two opposed actuators, which are designed to grip the fibre, and a set of fixed mounting features. Prototype devices are demonstrated by deep reactive ion etching of bonded silicon-on-insulator, and in-plane alignment of single-mode fibre is demonstrated.
LanguageEnglish
Pages1633-1639
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Micromechanics and Microengineering
Volume14
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2004

Fingerprint

MEMS
Optical fibers
Actuators
Fibers
Reactive ion etching
Silicon
Single mode fibers
Mountings
Thermal expansion
Geometry

Keywords

  • force control
  • optical fiber
  • cantilever beam
  • thermal expansion
  • insulator technology
  • microelectromechanical device
  • integrated optics
  • electrothermics

Cite this

Syms, R. ; Zou, H. ; Yao, J. ; Uttamchandani, D.G. ; Stagg, J. / Scalable electrothermal MEMS actuator for optical fibre alignment. In: Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering. 2004 ; Vol. 14, No. 12. pp. 1633-1639.
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Scalable electrothermal MEMS actuator for optical fibre alignment. / Syms, R.; Zou, H.; Yao, J.; Uttamchandani, D.G.; Stagg, J.

In: Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering, Vol. 14, No. 12, 12.2004, p. 1633-1639.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Scalable electrothermal MEMS actuator for optical fibre alignment

AU - Syms, R.

AU - Zou, H.

AU - Yao, J.

AU - Uttamchandani, D.G.

AU - Stagg, J.

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AB - A new geometry of high-force electrothermal actuator is demonstrated using microelectromechanical systems technology. The actuator consists of two sets of inclined, parallel, suspended beams, which are tethered at one end and linked together at the other. The first set is divided into two halves, which are connected in series and heated electrically. The second set acts as a tether for the first, so that differential thermal expansion gives rise to a lateral deflection. The design can be scaled easily to increase the actuation force, which is sufficient to deflect a cantilevered optical fibre. A bi-directional fibre alignment device is formed from two opposed actuators, which are designed to grip the fibre, and a set of fixed mounting features. Prototype devices are demonstrated by deep reactive ion etching of bonded silicon-on-insulator, and in-plane alignment of single-mode fibre is demonstrated.

KW - force control

KW - optical fiber

KW - cantilever beam

KW - thermal expansion

KW - insulator technology

KW - microelectromechanical device

KW - integrated optics

KW - electrothermics

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