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ACS Nano. 2012 Jan 24;6(1):256-64. doi: 10.1021/nn203517w. Epub 2011 Dec 19.

Nanomechanical silicon resonators with intrinsic tunable gain and sub-nW power consumption.

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Nanoelectronic Devices Laboratory, Ecole Polytechnique Fédéral de Lausanne (EPFL), 1015 Lausanne, Switzerland.


Nanoelectromechanical systems (NEMS) as integrated components for ultrasensitive sensing, time keeping, or radio frequency applications have driven the search for scalable nanomechanical transduction on-chip. Here, we present a hybrid silicon-on-insulator platform for building NEM oscillators in which fin field effect transistors (FinFETs) are integrated into nanomechanical silicon resonators. We demonstrate transistor amplification and signal mixing, coupled with mechanical motion at very high frequencies (25-80 MHz). By operating the transistor in the subthreshold region, the power consumption of resonators can be reduced to record-low nW levels, opening the way for the parallel operation of hundreds of thousands of NEM oscillators. The electromechanical charge modulation due to the field effect in a resonant transistor body constitutes a scalable nanomechanical motion detection all-on-chip and at room temperature. The new class of tunable NEMS represents a major step toward their integration in resonator arrays for applications in sensing and signal processing.

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