Simulation of a Comb Drive for Fracture Lifetime Measurements

G. Somlay, Z. Szucs, A. Poppe, and M. Rencz
Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Budapest, Hungary

In this work, a finite element analysis is used to simulate electrostatically actuated comb drives operating under DC conditions (zero actuating frequency). A dynamic multiphysics model is developed using the arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian (ALE) formulation.

The results show the coupled interaction between the electrostatic and mechanical domains of the transducer. The analysis is based on the evolution of electrostatic force versus comb finger engagement.

With the help of numerical simulations, an optimum design was found for a comb drive reliability test structure with a well-defined part exposed to fatigue.

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