Realization of micromachined-electromechanical devices for wireless communication applications
Heves, Emre (2006) Realization of micromachined-electromechanical devices for wireless communication applications. [Thesis]
As the communication technology evolves day by day, the demands for low cost, low power, multifunctional and higher-speed data communication circuits are increasing enormously. All these essential requirements enforce significant challenges on the current technology and illustrate the need for new designs and advanced architectures. The challenges of reconfigurability, spectrum efficiency, security, miniaturization and cost minimization can only be met by ensuring that the transceiver/receiver is comprised of low-energy, low-cost, adaptive and high performance RF devices. With the potential to enable wide operational bandwidths, eliminate off-chip passive components, make interconnect losses negligible, and produce almost ideal switches and resonators in the context of a planar fabrication process compatible with existing IC processes, micromachining and Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) has emerged to overcome the aforementioned problems of communication circuits. Up to date RF MEMS technology prove that on-chip switches with zero standby power consumption, low switching power and low actuation voltage; high quality inductors, capacitors and varactors; highly stable (quartz-like) oscillators and high performance filters operating in the tens of MHz to several GHz frequency range can be realized. The availability of such RF and microwave components will provide designers with the elements they have long hoped for to create novel and simple, but powerful, reconfigurable systems. In this thesis, realization of RF MEMS components such as capacitive switches, parallel plate variable capacitors, micromachined inductors and resonators for wireless communication applications are presented. The design and fabrication of each component are given in detail. The performance improvement of some blocks by integrating RF MEMS devices is demonstrated. Also the fabrication process problems limiting the performance parameters of RF MEMS components are addressed.
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