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High stroke polymer based electrostatic actuators

: Lange, Nicolas

Actuator 2012, 13th International Conference on New Actuators & 7th International Exhibition on Smart Actuators and Drive Systems. Conference Proceedings : Bremen Convention Center, 18-20 June 2012
Bremen: Messe Bremen, 2012
ISBN: 978-3-933339-20-1 (CD-ROM)
ISBN: 978-3-933339-19-5
International Conference on New Actuators <13, 2012, Bremen>
International Exhibition on Smart Actuators and Drive Systems <7, 2012, Bremen>
Fraunhofer IOF ()
actuator; electrostatic; polymer; zipper; wafer level; OrmoComp; lithography; optics

In this work we present the successful fabrication of a polymer based zipper actuator to achieve a large stroke electrostatic actuation. Instead of the commonly used silicon [1] we use the UV-curable OrmoComp to build the actuator. OrmoComp has a significantly lower elastic modulus (about 1 GPa), only a fraction of actuation voltage is necessary for a similar deflection. The major drawback of the polymer based approach is the challenging fabrication process which is described in this paper. All process steps are realized as a lithographic structuring of positive tone, respectively negative tone resists, allowing a full wafer level fabrication of polymer based electrostatic actuators. A specific development process makes it possible to induce stress in the OrmoComp layer, creating an out of plane actuator based on a simple two dimensional lithography process. We present the results on the first completely wafer level fabricated zipper actuator, creating an out-of-plane motion up to 470 µm at an actuation voltage of 374 V.