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Large throw magnetic microactuator

Hartley, A.C., Miles, R.E., Corda, J. and Dimitrakopoulos, N. (2008) Large throw magnetic microactuator. Mechatronics, 18 (9). pp. 459-465. ISSN 0957-4158

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The design and fabrication of an electromagnetic MEMS actuator capable of repeatedly switching over a gap length of 100 μm is presented. The device is to be used as a switch for radio-frequency (RF) circuits. It is based on a potcore type electromagnet and a mover suspended on a microbeam. The device was first modelled and optimised using a finite element analysis and then microfabricated. The ultra thick, negative photoresist, SU-8, was used extensively throughout the construction as: (i) an electroplating mould for the copper coils (up to four layers thick at 50 μm per layer), (ii) the magnetic material for the pot core and mover by loading it with various powders to produce a range of magnetic properties and (iii) the actuator beams because of its low elastic modulus. The potcore has a footprint of 0.8 mm2 and for a driving current of 1.4 A (corresponding to a power dissipation of about 80 mW) generates an initial force of 0.11 mN which is sufficient to close a 100 μm gap. In this prototype form, the device could be operated for more than 104 cycles. The maximum switching distance achieved was 200 μm.

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: Copyright © 2008 Elsevier Ltd. This is an author produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy.
Keywords: magnetic, microactuator
Institution: The University of Leeds
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Engineering (Leeds) > School of Electronic & Electrical Engineering (Leeds)
Depositing User: Mrs Marie Barber
Date Deposited: 18 Nov 2008 10:39
Last Modified: 08 Feb 2013 17:05
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mechatronics.2008.05.0...
Status: Published
Publisher: Elsevier
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1016/j.mechatronics.2008.05.012
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/4799

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