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Ceramic MEMS Designed for Wireless Pressure Monitoring in the Industrial Environment

Author(s): Marko Pavlin | Darko Belavic | Franc Novak

Journal: Sensors
ISSN 1424-8220

Volume: 12;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 320;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: energy harvesting | pressure measurement | thick film sensors

This paper presents the design of a wireless pressure-monitoring system for harsh-environment applications. Two types of ceramic pressure sensors made with a low-temperature cofired ceramic (LTCC) were considered. The first type is a piezoresistive strain gauge pressure sensor. The second type is a capacitive pressure sensor, which is based on changes of the capacitance values between two electrodes: one electrode is fixed and the other is movable under an applied pressure. The design was primarily focused on low power consumption. Reliable operation in the presence of disturbances, like electromagnetic interference, parasitic capacitances, etc., proved to be contradictory constraints. A piezoresistive ceramic pressure sensor with a high bridge impedance was chosen for use in a wireless pressure-monitoring system and an acceptable solution using energy-harvesting techniques has been achieved. The described solution allows for the integration of a sensor element with an energy harvester that has a printed thick-film battery and complete electronics in a single substrate packaged inside a compact housing.

Tango Jona
Tangokurs Rapperswil-Jona

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