Seesaw Capacitive Structure as an Electrostatically Actuated Nonlinear Impact Resonator

Cun Li*, Chao Han, Yulong Zhao, Carl Anthony, Xueyong Wei

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


In this paper, we present a new design of electrostatically actuated nonlinear impact resonator with a capacitive seesaw structure to solve the problem of short circuit, stiction and chaotic motion. The device is driven by electrostatic force on the capacitors, which utilizes nonlinear behavior and creates a pull-in effect. The seesaw structure can be set into oscillation with only a DC power source and a resistor, which is proved by a prototype device. No stiction occurred in over 10 h of experimental time, thus demonstrating the feasibility of solving the breakdown and stiction problem. A static mathematical model was established, solved, and verified by the experiment results, and a dynamic model with floating charge was analyzed. The analysis reveals the working principle of the proposed seesaw capacitive structure as an electrostatically actuated nonlinear impact resonator, and indicates that the working voltage can be decreased to less than 25 V if the oscillator dimensions are decreased to micrometers. The seesaw structure has considerable potential application for autonomous sensors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number112279
JournalSensors and Actuators, A: Physical
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported in part by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 51805424 and 51421004 ), China Postdoctoral Science Foundation ( 2018M633501 ) and The Key R&D Program in Shaanxi Province (Grant No. 2018ZDCXL -GY-02-03 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020


  • autonomous sensor
  • chaotic motion
  • electrostatically actuated
  • nonlinear impact resonator
  • seesaw capacitive structure
  • stiction problem

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Instrumentation
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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