Microelectromechanical System (MEMS) Switch Test

Report No. ARL-TR-5439
Authors: Stanley Karter and Tony Ivanov
Date/Pages: January 2011; 24 pages
Abstract: Analyzing microelectromechanical system (MEMS) switch behavior is a new field of study, which guides the production of MEMS switches. I analyzed switch behavior using a digital circuit synthesized on a field-programmable gate array (FPGA) chip. The chip had two outputs and one input connected to a MEMS switch and a radio frequency (RF) generator. It opened and closed the switch repeatedly and measured the resistance across that switch. The circuit consisted of the switch, a resistor, and the voltage out signal. I calculated the switch resistance from the voltage output applied on one end of the switch and the voltage input that lies between the switch and the resistor. The second output was the bias voltage needed to close the switch. A DA/AD converter translated the digital signal from the chip to the analog signal interacting with the switch. Parameters, such as the bias voltage, were entered into the chip using a software application on a computer.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: January 1, 2011