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Title: Tribo-functionalizing Si and SU8 materials by surface modification for application in MEMS/NEMS actuator-based devices
Authors: Singh, R.A. 
Satyanarayana, N. 
Kustandi, T.S.
Sinha, S.K. 
Issue Date: 12-Jan-2011
Citation: Singh, R.A., Satyanarayana, N., Kustandi, T.S., Sinha, S.K. (2011-01-12). Tribo-functionalizing Si and SU8 materials by surface modification for application in MEMS/NEMS actuator-based devices. Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics 44 (1) : -. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Micro/nano-electro-mechanical-systems (MEMS/NEMS) are miniaturized devices built at micro/nanoscales. At these scales, the surface/interfacial forces are extremely strong and they adversely affect the smooth operation and the useful operating lifetimes of such devices. When these forces manifest in severe forms, they lead to material removal and thereby reduce the wear durability of the devices. In this paper, we present a simple, yet robust, two-step surface modification method to significantly enhance the tribological performance of MEMS/NEMS materials. The two-step method involves oxygen plasma treatment of polymeric films and the application of a nanolubricant, namely perfluoropolyether. We apply the two-step method to the two most important MEMS/NEMS structural materials, namely silicon and SU8 polymer. On applying surface modification to these materials, their initial coefficient of friction reduces by ∼4-7 times and the steady-state coefficient of friction reduces by ∼2.5-3.5 times. Simultaneously, the wear durability of both the materials increases by >1000 times. The two-step method is time effective as each of the steps takes the time duration of approximately 1 min. It is also cost effective as the oxygen plasma treatment is a part of the MEMS/NEMS fabrication process. The two-step method can be readily and easily integrated into MEMS/NEMS fabrication processes. It is anticipated that this method will work for any kind of structural material from which MEMS/NEMS are or can be made. © 2011 IOP Publishing Ltd.
Source Title: Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics
ISSN: 00223727
DOI: 10.1088/0022-3727/44/1/015301
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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