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Parameter Analysis of Millimeter-Wave Waveguide Switch Based on a MEMS-Reconfigurable Surface
KTH, School of Electrical Engineering (EES), Micro and Nanosystems. (RF MEMS)
KTH, School of Electrical Engineering (EES), Micro and Nanosystems. (RF MEMS)
2013 (English)In: IEEE transactions on microwave theory and techniques, ISSN 0018-9480, E-ISSN 1557-9670, Vol. 61, no 12, 4396-4406 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper presents a novel concept of a millimeter-wave waveguide switch based on amicroelectromechanical (MEMS)-reconfigurable surface with insertion loss and isolation very similar to high performance but bulky rotary waveguide switches, despite its thickness of only 30 mu m. A set of up to 1470 micromachined cantilevers arranged in vertical columns are actuated laterally by on-chip integrated MEMS comb-drive actuators, to switch between the transmissive state and the blocking state. In the blocking state, the surface is reconfigured so that the wave propagation is blocked by the cantilever columns short-circuiting the electrical field lines of the TE10 mode. A design study has been carried out identifying the performance impact of different design parameters. The RF measurements (60-70 GHz) of fabricated, fully functional prototype chips show that the devices have an isolation between 30 and 40 dB in the OFF state and an insertion loss between 0.4 and 1.1 dB in the ON state, of which the waveguide-assembly setup alone contributes 0.3 dB. A device-level yield analysis was carried out, both by simulations and by creating artificial defects in the fabricated devices, revealing that a cantilever yield of 95% is sufficient for close-to-best performance. The actuation voltage of the active-opening/active-closing actuators is 40-44 V, depending on design, with high reproducibility of better than (sigma = 0.0605 V). Lifetime measurements of the all-metal, monocrystalline-silicon core devices were carried out for 14 h, after which 4.3 million cycles were achieved without any indication of degradation. Furthermore, a MEMS-switchable waveguide iris based on the reconfigurable surface is presented.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 61, no 12, 4396-4406 p.
Keyword [en]
RF MEMS, reconfigurable surface, waveguide switch, microwave switch, MEMS switches, MEMS components and techniques, millimeter-waves
National Category
Other Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-124590DOI: 10.1109/TMTT.2013.2287682ISI: 000327952100043Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84890437665OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-124590DiVA: diva2:637005
Note

QC 20140108. Updated from accepted to published.

Available from: 2013-07-15 Created: 2013-07-15 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Waveguide-Integrated MEMS Concepts for Tunable Millimeter-Wave Systems
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Waveguide-Integrated MEMS Concepts for Tunable Millimeter-Wave Systems
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis presents two families of novel waveguide-integrated components based on millimeter-wave microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) for reconfigurable systems. The first group comprises V-band (50–75 GHz) and W-band (75–110 GHz) waveguide switches and switchable irises, and their application as switchable cavity resonators, and tunable bandpass filters implemented by integration of novel MEMS-reconfigurable surfaces into a rectangular waveguide. The second category comprises MEMS-based reconfigurable finlines integrated as phase shifters into a rectangular waveguide array to demonstrate beams steering with a phased array antenna.

The first group of the presented reconfigurable waveguide components is based on a novel MEMS-reconfigurable surface structured in the device layer of a silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafer using metallized mono-crystalline silicon as structural and functional material. The chip containing the reconfigurable surface is integrated in the cross-section of a WR-12 rectangular waveguide perpendicular to the wave propagation. The reconfigurable surface is modified for different states by on-chip push-pull electrostatic comb-drive MEMS actuators. The switch is ON when the reconfigurable surface is in its transmissive state and OFF when the reconfigurable surface is in its blocking state for the propagating wave. This millimeter-wave waveguide switch shows an insertion loss and isolation very similar to high-performance but bulky mechanical rotary waveguide switches, despite being extremely compact (30 μm thick), and thus combines the high electrical performance of mechanical switches with the size of (high power consuming and inferior performance) PIN-diode waveguide switches. This thesis also investigates the optimization to decrease the number of contact points for the OFF state and presents a device yield analysis. The same concept is developed further to MEMS-switchable inductive and capacitive irises, with the performance similar to ideal irises. With such MEMS-reconfigurable irises a switchable cavity resonator was implemented and the potential of tunable bandpass filters are demonstrated. Since these devices feature all-metal design as no dielectric layers are utilized, no dielectric charging effect is observed. Furthermore, this thesis investigates the low-loss integration of millimeter-wave MEMS-reconfigurable devices into rectangular waveguide with conductive polymer interposers.

The second group of components comprises finlines which are fabricated out of two bonded silicon wafers with bilateral gold structures integrated into a WR-12 rectangular waveguide. A 2-bit waveguide phase shifter is designed for 77-GHz automotive radar. Such phase shifters are used as individual building blocks of a two-dimensional antenna array for beam steering frontends.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2014. xv, 85 p.
Series
TRITA-EE, ISSN 1653-5146 ; 2014:012
National Category
Other Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-143040 (URN)978-91-7595-062-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2014-04-04, F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

QC 20140317

Available from: 2014-03-17 Created: 2014-03-14 Last updated: 2014-03-17Bibliographically approved

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