In this study, we demonstrate the usefulness of Finite Element Analysis (FEA) and simulation techniques in the design of MEMS micropumps. Such pumps provide for the handling of milliliter-scaled fluid volumes desired in many lab-on-a-chip chemical and biomedical applications. This work is focused on a micropump driven by the piezoelectric effect, which in turn invokes the dominant resonance behavior. Because the design of the device is the emphasis of this study, the model was originated in CAD and includes the fme-scale geometric details commonly encountered in a wide variety of micropumps. The model considered in this study is a rectangular micropump with a piezoelectrically actuated diaphragm on its top and two valves on its bottom. The mechanical efficiency of the pump hinges on using resonance to generate sufficient motion of the diaphragm. Mechanical Event Simulation (MES) commercial software from ALGOR was utilized to simulate this motion, and thus provide a method for optimizing the design. The results show that consideration needs to be given to the voltage-driving frequency because of its effect on the pump performance and the stress levels within it.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.