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Direction-sensitive semiconductor flow sensor - has silicon membrane regions thermally isolated by insulation-filled trenches.
: Kersjes, R.; Mokwa, W.; Zimmer, G.; Vogt, H.

Frontpage ()

WO 1996EP03821 A: 19960830
EP 922203 B1: 20000531
Patent, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IMS ()

A flow sensor component has heat insulating material-filled trenches (14) extending through a single crystal silicon membrane (10) to define thermally isolated regions which are provided with heating elements (28) and/or temperature measuring elements (22, 24, 26). Preferably, the trenches are filled with a dielectric material such as silicon oxide or nitride, the membrane (10) is formed by back face etching of a silicon wafer (12), the temperature measuring elements (22, 24, 26) are formed by diffused resistors, polysilicon resistors or series-connected diodes and the heating elements (28) are formed by polysilicon resistors, diffused resistors or transistors. USE - As a component of a direction-sensitive thermal semiconductor flow sensor for liquids and gases. ADVANTAGE - The sensor combines the advantages of silicon membranes (robustness and capability of integrating temperature-sensitive electronic devices) and of dielectric membranes with the possibility of flow direction measurem ent. The trenches provide good thermal isolation between the heating regions and temperature measuring regions for increased sensitivity.