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Three Dimensional Behavior of Fully Compliant Bistable Micromechanisms

[+] Author Affiliations
Brian B. Cherry

Raytheon Missile Systems, Tucson, AZ

Larry L. Howell

Brigham Young University, Provo, UT

Paper No. DETC2008-49525, pp. 619-628; 10 pages
  • ASME 2008 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 4: 20th International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology; Second International Conference on Micro- and Nanosystems
  • Brooklyn, New York, USA, August 3–6, 2008
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4328-4 | eISBN: 0-7918-3831-5
  • Copyright © 2008 by ASME


An improved understanding of the three-dimensional behavior of fully compliant bistable micromechanisms (FCBMs) would facilitate their appropriate implementation in applications such as threshold sensing arrays. A 3-D finite element model was developed to analyze the motion of a nominal FCBM design with various eccentric and off-axis loading conditions. Roll, pitch, and yaw rotations and Z-direction deflection results are presented for various loading conditions. Two distinct behaviors are discussed. Phenomenon 1 occurred when no off-axis loads were applied or when the magnitudes were small. Phenomenon 1 is characterized by shuttle motion with a relatively large pitch rotation. Phenomenon 2 occurred for larger magnitudes of off-axis loads, and was characterized by larger Z-direction deflections, lower actuation forces, and occasional loss of bistability.

Copyright © 2008 by ASME



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