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Design and Application of a High-G Piezoresistive Acceleration Sensor for High-Impact Application

Hu, Xiaodong; Mackowiak, Piotr; Bäuscher, Manuel; Ehrmann, Oswin; Lang, Klaus-Dieter; Schneider-Ramelow, Martin; Linke, Stefan; Ngo, Ha-Duong

FG Nano Interconnect Technologies

In this paper, we present our work developing a family of silicon-on-insulator (SOI)–based high-g micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) piezoresistive sensors for measurement of accelerations up to 60,000 g. This paper presents the design, simulation, and manufacturing stages. The high-acceleration sensor is realized with one double-clamped beam carrying one transversal and one longitudinal piezoresistor on each end of the beam. The four piezoresistors are connected to a Wheatstone bridge. The piezoresistors are defined to 4400 Ω, which results in a width-to-depth geometry of the pn-junction of 14 μm × 1.8 μm. A finite element method (FEM) simulation model is used to determine the beam length, which complies with the resonance frequency and sensitivity. The geometry of the realized high-g sensor element is 3 × 2 × 1 mm3. To demonstrate the performance of the sensor, a shock wave bar is used to test the sensor, and a Polytec vibrometer is used as an acceleration reference. The sensor wave form tracks the laser signal very well up to 60,000 g. The sensor can be utilized in aerospace applications or in the control and detection of impact levels.