A micro seismometer based on molecular electronic transducer technology for planetary exploration

Huang, Hai; Carande, Bryce; Tang, Rui; Oiler, Jonathan; Zaitsev, Dmitri; Agafonov, Vadim; Yu, Hongyu
May 2013
Applied Physics Letters;5/13/2013, Vol. 102 Issue 19, p193512
Academic Journal
This letter describes an implementation of micromachined seismometer based on molecular electronic transducer (MET) technology. As opposed to a solid inertial mass, MET seismometer senses the movement of liquid electrolyte relative to fixed electrodes. The employment of micro-electro-mechanical systems techniques reduces the internal size of the sensing cell to 1μm and improves the reproducibility of the device. For operating bias of 600 mV, a sensitivity of 809 V/(m/s2) was measured under acceleration of 400μg(g≡9.81m/s2) at 0.32 Hz. A -115 dB (relative to (m/s2)/Hz) noise level at 1 Hz was achieved. This work develops an alternative paradigm of seismic sensing device with small size, high sensitivity, low noise floor, high shock tolerance, and independence of installation angle, which is promising for next generation seismometers for planetary exploration.


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