A High Resolution MEMS Capacitive Force Sensor with Bionic Swallow Comb Arrays for Ultralow Multiphysics Measurement

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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  • Wendi Gao
  • Cunlang Liu
  • Xiangguang Han
  • Libo Zhao
  • Qijing Lin
  • Zhuangde Jiang

Related Research Unit(s)


Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
Journal / PublicationIEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics
Online published12 Sep 2022
Publication statusOnline published - 12 Sep 2022


Precise force sensing is essential for the mechanical characterization and robotic micromanipulation of biological targets. In this work, a high-resolution MEMS capacitive force sensor was proposed for measuring ultralow multiphysics. A bionic swallow structure that contained multiple feathered comb arrays was designed for reducing chip dimension and eliminating undesirable mechanical cross-coupling effect. The comb structure was optimized for maximum sensitivity, linearity, and compact chip size. Utilizing a novel interconnection configuration, interferences derived from parasitic capacitance and electrostatic forces exerted negligible effects on the sensor output. The proposed bionic force sensor was fabricated following a simple three-mask process and integrated with ASIC readouts. Its measuring sensitivity was 7.151 fF/nm, 0.529 aF/nN, and 4.247 pF/g for displacement, force, and inclination measurements, respectively. The proposed sensor had a large measurement range of 1000.00 nm and 13.83 µN with a high linearity of 0.9998. The 1-σ resolution was 0.0328 nm and 0.4436 nN, and the noise floor resolution was 0.0044 nm √Hz and 0.0597 nN/√Hz for displacement and force measurements, respectively. The bias stability of Allan deviance was 0.0050 nm and 0.0678 nN at an integration time of 0.65 s. The proposed bionic swallow sensor exhibited considerable improvement over existing capacitive sensors and feasibility for ultralow multiphysics measurement in biomedical applications.

Research Area(s)

  • Biomedical applications, Biomedical measurement, Bionic design, Capacitive sensors, Force, Linearity, Mechanical characterization, MEMS Capacitive sensor, Robot sensing systems, Robotic micromanipulation, Sensitivity, Strain