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Development of a novel piezoresistive thin film sensor system based on hydrogenated carbon

: Biehl, S.; Rumposch, C.; Bräuer, G.; Hoffmeister, H.-W.; Luig, M.


Microsystem Technologies 20 (2014), No.4-5, pp.989-993
ISSN: 0946-7076
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IST ()

Thin film sensor systems based on hydrogenated carbon have the advantage to combine two very important characteristics in order to be used in measurement engineering: Firstly, the sensory layer demonstrates piezoresistive behavior and secondly its good properties related to hardness and wear resistance lead in a tribologically stable system. Therefore, the thin film sensor systems can be applied into the main distribution of force within machine parts or used for universal interchangeable sensor systems, e.g. sensory washers. In this article the deposition of a self-contained thin film sensor system on a large technical component (spindle shaft) is shown. The spindle shaft with a length of 480 mm and an outer diameter of 90 mm is part of a belt driven machining spindle for planing machines in woodworking industries. In order to establish a measurement system, which allows monitoring the clamping force of the tool holder and the imbalance of the mounted tool, the thin film sensor system was directly applied to the front surface of the spindle shaft. For this application a novel self-contained thin film sensor system was developed, which consists of an alumina layer for electrical isolation, a chromium layer to establish internal sensor electrodes, a piezoresistive hydrogenated carbon layer (1 µm) and a second covering wear resistance and insulation layer (silicon and oxygen modified carbon layer). The piezoresistive sensor layer and the top layer are part of the diamond like carbon layer family (Robertson, Diam Relat Mater 12:79-84, 2003; Bewilogua et al. DLC based coatings for tribological applications, pp. 67-75, 2006; Biehl et al. Thin Solid Films 515(3):1171-1175, 2006, Novel measurement and monitoring system for forming processes based on piezoresistive thin film systems. Springer Verlag, pp. 879-883, 2010).