A new microtensile tester for the study of MEMS materials with the aid of atomic force microscopy

Ioannis Chasiotis, Wolfgang G. Knauss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


An apparatus has been designed and implemented to measure the elastic tensile properties (Young's modulus and tensile strength) of surface micromachined polysilicon specimens. The tensile specimens are "dog-bone" shaped ending in a large "paddle" for convenient electrostatic or, in the improved apparatus, ultraviolet (UV) light curable adhesive gripping deposited with electrostatically controlled manipulation. The typical test section of the specimens is 400 μm long with 2 μm × 50 μm cross section. The new device supports a nanomechanics method developed in our laboratory to acquire surface topologies of deforming specimens by means of Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) to determine (fields of) strains via Digital Image Correlation (DIC). With this tool, high strength or non-linearly behaving materials can be tested under different environmental conditions by measuring the strains directly on the surface of the film with nanometer resolution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-57
Number of pages7
JournalExperimental Mechanics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • AFM
  • Digital image correlation
  • MEMS
  • Mechanical properties
  • Microtensile testing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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