Microactuators capable of providing high resolution displacement and controlled force have many applications in RF MEMS, microfluidics, and motion control. This paper theoretically and experimentally investigates the dynamic response of a piezoelectric flextensional microactuator consisting of a clamped beam that buckles in response to contraction of a bonded PZT support. The DRIE and solder bonding fabrication process produces beams with initial curvature that affects their dynamic response. Unlike previous research where sinusoidal initial beam shapes are analyzed, polynomial initial beam shape enables more accurate prediction of beam natural frequencies and frequency response when compared with experimental results. The inclusion of squeeze film damping between the beam and PZT support enables the model to predict frequency response. Experiments show that mounting the PZT with soft carbon tape limits PZT vibration.

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