Dissertation Talk: Mechanical Energy Storage for Self-Destructing Motes and Jumping Microrobots

Presentation: Dissertation Talk: EE | May 10 | 9:30-10:30 a.m. | 490 Cory Hall

 Joseph Greenspun, UC Berkeley

 Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences (EECS)

Mechanical energy storage allows all kinds of animals, from flea to human, to move from place to place. The watchmaking industry has used it for over half a millenium as the workhorse of its precision instruments. By physically deforming a material, energy can be stored and extracted at a later time to perform a wide array of interesting applications.

In this talk I will explain two applications of mechanical energy storage in the field of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). A system has been demonstrated that is capable of physically destroying a silicon-based sensor node. Using a MEMS impactor capable of storing 4 microjoules of mechanical energy, a sealed cavity containing xenon difluoride can be fractured, leading to the complete chemical etching of the sensor node. This self-destruction is triggered with a low-voltage electrical signal. Additionally, a jumping MEMS microrobot was designed and fabricated using many of the same energy storing principles. Using on-board motors the microrobot has jumped 1 mm with tethered wires for power and control.

 CA, greenspun@berkeley.edu, 2038152271