Plastic deformation magnetic assembly (PDMA) of out-of-plane microstructures: Technology and application

Jun Zou, Jack Chen, Chang Liu, José E. Schutt-Ainé

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper presents results on the development and application of a three-dimensional (3-D) microstructure assembly technique-Plastic deformation magnetic assembly (PDMA). In PDMA, certain part of the microstructure to be assembled is plastically deformed by the magnetic force generated from the interaction between a magnetic material piece deposited on the microstructure and an external magnetic field. As a result, the entire microstructure can remain at a rest angle with respect to the substrate surface due to the plastic deformation. The amount of plastic deformation and the rest angle are found to be strongly dependent on the properties and the geometric parameters of the deformation region of the microstructure and also the magnetic material piece. A general design rule for PDMA has been given. PDMA is capable of batch-scale assembly. It has been successfully applied to fabricate novel micromachined devices with high yield and good controllability. As an example, the results of a novel vertical planar spiral inductor realized by the application of PDMA have also been presented in the paper.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)302-309
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Microelectromechanical Systems
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2001


  • Magnetic actuation
  • Plastic deformation
  • Three-dimensional (3-D) assembly
  • Vertical inductor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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