Accession Number:

ADA510499

Title:

A Force-Detection NMR Sensor in CMOS-MEMS

Descriptive Note:

Master's thesis

Corporate Author:

CARNEGIE-MELLON UNIV PITTSBURGH PA DEPT OF ELECTRICAL AND COMPUTER ENGINEERING

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2003-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

63.0

Abstract:

Nuclear Magnetic Resonance NMR on micro-liter samples using the Force Detection NMR FDNMR method will enable mobile and embedded detection of many elements without a multi-tesla superconducting magnet. This report presents a FDNMR sensor which has the ability to detect hydrogen of a 0.52 microliters water sample in a 1 tesla magnetic field. The sensor is a micromachined cantilevered paddle within a CMOS chip measuring 2.5 mm x 2.5 mm x 540 micronmeters with integrated amplification electronics. To begin the paddle fabrication, a 30 mm thick silicon membrane with a thin layer of CMOS interconnect on top, is made by Deep Reactive Ion Etching DRIE the backside of the chip. The backside area is patterned with photoresist and etched into many close-proximity, slightly undercut high-aspect-ratio trenches to achieve a uniform membrane thickness. The resulting membrane measures 1370 mm by 1850 mm, with center to edge thickness variations less than 5 mm. A 0.6 mm x 0.6 mm x 0.25 mm piece of pure nickel is glued to the etched membrane surface as a detector magnet. Freon plasma etches trenches into the silicon dioxide interconnect layer not masked by aluminum, and a final DRIE extends the trenches through the silicon membrane. The final etch releases the folded-mass cantilever with 1 mm long spring beams and a 1.1 mm2 paddle surrounded by a capacitive bridge sensor to measure vertical displacement. Integrated electronics drive the input and amplify the output of the balanced capacitive bridge which is made of lateral air gap capacitors between interdigitated micromechanical fingers. Force induced vertical cantilever displacement imbalances the bridge and the amplified output signal is measured by external test equipment. The bridge has the dynamic range to measure up to 0.5 mm displacement at the maximum sensitivity of 5.12 mVnm and up to 2.0 mm with less sensitivity.

Subject Categories:

  • Industrial Chemistry and Chemical Processing
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics and Spectroscopy
  • Nuclear Physics and Elementary Particle Physics

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE