Inertial sensors

Aluminum nitride – innovative piezoelectric MEMS transducer

© Fraunhofer ENAS
Aluminum nitride – innovative piezoelectric MEMS transducer.

Piezoelectric transducer have high dynamic ranges and high energy densities. The piezoelectric materials generate high mechanical forces and/or have high voltage sensitivities. Therefore, they are perfectly suited for energy harvesting as well as for sensors and actuators, such as inertial sensors, optical systems, acoustic transducer, fluidic sensors, MEMS in medical engineering, Industry 4.0 and many more. Continuous technological innovations at the research site Chemnitz allow the cost-efficient and reproducible integration of piezoelectric layers in MEMS and enable the use of piezo MEMS on an industrial scale. The piezoelectric material aluminum nitride (AlN) is compatible with microelectronic processes and allows a fast and efficient integration into existing industrial manufacturing processes. In addition, aluminum nitride has no Curie temperature, is nontoxic and shows no ageing effect for the piezoelectric behavior. Wafer-level sputtering enables scaling of the technology up to maturity phase production.