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An Accelerated Stress Test Method for Electrostatically Driven MEMS Devices

  • Ruan, Jinyu J.
  • Monnereau, Nicolas
  • Tremouilles, David
  • Mauran, Nicolas
  • Coccetti, Fabio
  • Nolhier, Nicolas
  • Plana, Robert
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2012
Infoscience @ EPFL
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This paper addresses an innovative solution to develop a circuit to perform accelerated stress tests of capacitive microelectromechanical-system (MEMS) switches and shows the use of instruments and equipment to monitor physical aging phenomena. A dedicated test circuit was designed and fabricated in order to meet the need for accelerated techniques for those structures. It integrated an in-house miniaturized circuit connected to additional test equipment (e. g., oscilloscopes and capacitance meters) that enabled the reliability characterization of capacitive switches. The accelerated stress test (AST) circuit generated an electrostatic-discharge-like impulse that stressed the device. This setup allowed the simultaneous measurement of the current and voltage waveforms, and the capacitance variation of the device under test after each stress. The results obtained using theminiature AST circuit were discussed and were correlated with results obtained using a commercial human-body-model tester as well as data from a cycling benchmark. The scope of this paper encompasses the theory, methodology, and practice of measurement; the development of a testing miniaturized board; and the analysis and representation of the information obtained from a set of measurements. As a result, it may contribute to the scientific and technical standards in the field of instrumentation and measurement of electrostactically actuated devices having insulating layers.

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