High-Q micromechanical resonators for mass sensing in dissipative media

Kirsi Tappura, Panu Pekko, Heikki Seppä

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    14 Citations (Scopus)


    Single crystal silicon-based micromechanical resonators are developed for mass sensing in dissipative media. The design aspects and preliminary characterization of the resonators are presented. For the suggested designs, quality factors of about 20 000 are typically measured in air at atmospheric pressure and 1000–2000 in contact with liquid. The performance is based on a wine-glass-type lateral bulk acoustic mode excited in a rectangular resonator plate. The mode essentially eliminates the radiation of acoustic energy into the sample media leaving viscous drag as the dominant fluid-based dissipation mechanism in the system. For a mass loading distributed over the central areas of the resonator a sensitivity of 27 ppm ng−1 is measured exhibiting good agreement with the results of the finite element method-based simulations. It is also shown that the mass sensitivity can be somewhat enhanced, not only by the proper distribution of the loaded mass, but also by introducing shallow barrier structures on the resonator.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number065002
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of Micromechanics and Microengineering
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 2011
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • mass sensor
    • MEMS resonator
    • quality factor
    • lateral bulk acoustic wave
    • wine-glass mode


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