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Three-dimensional microelectromechanical tilting platform operated by gear-driven racks

United States Patent

November 1, 2005
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Sandia National Laboratories - Visit the Intellectual Property Management and Licensing Website
A microelectromechanical (MEM) tiltable-platform apparatus is disclosed which utilizes a light-reflective platform (i.e. a micromirror) which is supported above a substrate by flexures which can be bent upwards to tilt the platform in any direction over an angle of generally .+-.10 degrees using a gear-driven rack attached to each flexure. Each rack is driven by a rotary microengine (i.e. a micromotor); and an optional thermal actuator can be used in combination with each microengine for initially an initial uplifting of the platform away from the substrate. The MEM apparatus has applications for optical switching (e.g. between a pair of optical fibers) or for optical beam scanning.
Klody; Kelly A. (Albuquerque, NM), Habbit, Jr.; Robert D. (Albuquerque, NM)
Sandia Corporation (Albuquerque, NM)
10/ 404,780
March 31, 2003
GOVERNMENT RIGHTS This invention was made with Government support under Contract No. DE-AC04-94AL85000 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.