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Micromachined Capacitive Long-Range Displacement Sensor for Nano-Positioning of Microactuator systems

University of Twente
Publication Date
  • Biology
  • Economics
  • Medicine


This thesis is about a “Micromachined capacitive long-range displacement sensor for nano-positioning of microactuator systems”. Possible applications of such microsystems are found in future probe-based datastorage, scanning probe microscopy, microbiology, optical lens manipulation, microgrippers and microrobots, etc. These applications require positioning with nanometer precision over a long range (ten’s of micrometers) and benefit from further miniaturization and the application of sub-mm sized Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS). In many cases open-loop operation is not sufficient and a form of system control is required to combine nanometer accuracy with a large dynamic range and to obtain better system performance. In order to make such systems both economically viable as well as compact, on-chip position sensing appears to be a requirement. The aim is therefore, to obtain optimal performance through an integration of sensor and actuator with micromachining fabrication technology without additional micro assembly.

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