Waterproof MEMS-Based Conformal Shear Stress Sensors

Period of Performance: 05/21/1998 - 12/21/1998


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

United Micromachines
Pasadena, CA 91107
Principal Investigator

Research Topics


There exists a large need in the fluid mechanics community for waterproof micro shear stress sensors. The United Micromachines MEMS hot-film shear-stress sensor with underlying vacuum cavity is the only proven laboratory prototype micro shear stress sensor. In addtion, these sensors can be fabricated on a flexible substrate that can conform to curved test surfaces. With additional effort, the sensor technology can be advanced to the point where the sensor will be a commercially viable product. One of these efforts must be directed in the direction of waterproofing, which will allow the sensors to be used both underwater and in wet (ie raining or very humid) conditions. Initially, United Micromachines will concentrate on developing and testing waterproof coatings for use on the already developed sensor. The testing will concentrate on the waterproofness and pressure effect on sensor performance. In Phase II, United Micromachines will develop the packaging and electronics integration schemes necessary for acceptance by the fluid mechanics community.