By Michael Green
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1996) “Low Strain Sputtered Polysilicon for Micromechanical Structures,” in Proc. 9th Int. Workshop on Microelectromechanical Systems, 11–15 February, San Diego, pp. 258–62. C. , McGraw-Hill, New York, pp. 93–129. , and Komvopoulos, K. (1992) “The Effect of Release Etch Processing on Surface Microstructure Stiction,” in Technical Digest: Solid-State Sensor and Actuator Workshop, 4–8 June, Hilton Head, SC, pp. 202–7. W. (1994) “Porous Polycrystalline Silicon: A New Material for MEMS,” J. MEMS 3, pp.
This process, commonly known as LIGA, has been used to produce highaspect-ratio structures such as microgears from NiFe magnetic alloys [Leith and Schwartz, 1999]. , 1999]. In this application, Ni was selected for its desirable chemical, wear, and temperature properties, not its magnetic properties. 8 Silicon Carbide Use of Si as a mechanical and electrical material has enabled the development of MEMS for a wide range of applications. Of course, use of MEMS is restricted by the physical properties of the material, which in the case of Si-based MEMS limits the devices to operating temperatures of about 200°C in low-wear and benign chemical environments.
Of course, use of MEMS is restricted by the physical properties of the material, which in the case of Si-based MEMS limits the devices to operating temperatures of about 200°C in low-wear and benign chemical environments. Therefore, alternate materials are necessary to extend the usefulness of MEMS to areas classified as harsh environments. In a broad sense, harsh environments include all conditions where use of Si is prohibited by its electrical, mechanical, and chemical properties. These would include high-temperature, high-radiation, high-wear, and highly acidic and basic chemical environments.