Global patent index - EP 0968530 A1

EP 0968530 A1 2000-01-05 - MICRO-ELECTROMECHANICAL RELAYS

Title (en)

MICRO-ELECTROMECHANICAL RELAYS

Title (de)

MIKRO-ELEKTROMECHANISCHES RELAIS

Title (fr)

RELAIS MICRO-ELECTROMECANIQUES

Publication

EP 0968530 A1 (EN)

Application

EP 97906500 A

Priority

US 9701885 W

Abstract (en)

[origin: WO9834269A1] A micro-electromechanical relay ("micro-relay") designed to both miniaturize and improve upon present day electromechanical relays. The micromachining fabrication process used to make the inventive micro-relay is based upon technology originally used by integrated circuit (IC) manufacturers. In simplest terms, the preferred inventive process consists of three steps, all performed using micromachining techniques. First, a layer of magnetic material is laid down on a substrate and patterned into a desired shape. Next, an electromagnetic coil (3) is created adjacent this material. Finally, a second layer of very efficient magnetic material is laid down adjacent the first two layers, forming a magnetic circuit, and having a portion fashioned into a deflectable structure, such as a cantilever beam (4A). The deflectable structure (4A, 4B) has at least a portion that is suspended over or adjacent to at least one electrical contact. In operation, current passes through the coil (3), clausing the deflectable structure (4A, 4B) to defect, and either make or break contact with the electrical contacts. The invention includes a unique unpowered hold feature. By integrating an electrostatic actuating capacitor into the micro-relay, an electrostatic force can be generated between the cantilever beam and the substrate (1) of the micro-relay that is strong enough to hold the relay in the "ON" position. Turning the relay "OFF" requires only that the voltage be removed.

IPC 1-7 (main, further and additional classification)

H01L 21/78

IPC 8 full level (invention and additional information)

H01H 50/00 (2006.01)

CPC (invention and additional information)

H01H 50/005 (2013.01); H01H 2001/0063 (2013.01)

Citation (search report)

  • [Y] US 5070317 A
  • [Y] US 3676742 A
  • [X] TAYLOR W P ET AL: "A PACKAGING COMPATIBLE FULLY INTEGRATED MICROMACHINED RELAY" PROCEEDINGS OF THE INTERNATIONAL SYMPOSIUM ON MICROELECTRONICS, 8 October 1996 (1996-10-08), pages 202-207, XP000675137
  • [Y] PATENT ABSTRACTS OF JAPAN vol. 1995, no. 05, 30 June 1995 (1995-06-30) & JP 07 045175 A (MATSUSHITA ELECTRIC WORKS LTD), 14 February 1995 (1995-02-14)
  • [Y] JIN JIN GU ET AL: "CONSTRICTION RESISTANCE OF MICROCONE-BASED CONTACTS" IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON COMPONENTS, PACKAGING AND MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY: PART A,US,IEEE SERVICE CENTER, PISCATAWAY, NJ, vol. 18, no. 2, 1 June 1995 (1995-06-01), pages 385-389, XP000508436 ISSN: 1070-9886
  • [AD] HOSAKA H ET AL: "ELECTROMAGNETIC MICRORELAYS: CONCEPTS AND FUNDAMENTAL CHARACTERISTICS" PROCEEDINGS OF THE WORKSHOP ON MICRO ELECTRO MECHANICAL SYSTEMS (MEMS),US,NEW YORK, IEEE, vol. WORKSHOP 6, 7 February 1993 (1993-02-07), pages 12-17, XP000366848 ISBN: 0-7803-0957-X
  • See also references of WO 9834269A1

Designated contracting state (EPC)

DE FR GB

EPO simple patent family

WO 9834269 A1 19980806; EP 0968530 A1 20000105; EP 0968530 A4 20010425

INPADOC legal status

2005-03-09 [18D] DEEMED TO BE WITHDRAWN

- Effective date: 20040831

2001-04-25 [A4] SUPPLEMENTARY SEARCH REPORT

- Effective date: 20010313

2001-04-25 [AK] DESIGNATED CONTRACTING STATES:

- Kind Code of Ref Document: A4

- Designated State(s): DE FR GB

2001-04-25 [RIC1] CLASSIFICATION (CORRECTION)

- Free Format Text: 7H 01L 21/78 A, 7H 01H 50/00 B

2000-01-05 [17P] REQUEST FOR EXAMINATION FILED

- Effective date: 19990821

2000-01-05 [AK] DESIGNATED CONTRACTING STATES:

- Kind Code of Ref Document: A1

- Designated State(s): DE FR GB