Fabrication and characterization of a hammer-shaped CMOS/BEOL-embedded nanoelectromechanical (NEM) relay

M. Riverola, A. Uranga, F. Torres, N. Barniol*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents the results on the design, fabrication and characterization of a cantilever-type NEM relay featuring a hammer-shaped tip and built in the back end of a conventional 0.35 μm CMOS technology. A high on/off current ratio (higher than 107), a subthreshold swing of only 285 μV/dec, and zero off-state leakage current were experimentally observed. Through an endurance test of 3·103 switching cycles, the relay showed a stable pull-in voltage of 31.25 V with an absolute variation of only 0.5 V. The resonant frequency was also characterized, and observed at 456.97 kHz. Finally, the paper discusses the usability of the presented device as a mass sensor with mass-stiffness decoupling capability for on-chip detection. This innovative feature, which could benefit the application portfolio of the emerging IoT era, lies on the fact that both pull-in voltage and resonant frequency can be fully electrically determined.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-51
Number of pages8
JournalMicroelectronic Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2018


  • Mass-stiffness sensing
  • NEMS relay
  • NEMS resonators


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