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Ball bearing supported electromagnetic microgenerator

Abstract 

As the critical dimensions of devices continue to shrink, novel methods and apparatus must be developed to overcome device limitations at smaller length scales. Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), such as micro-fabricated generators, motors or other electromechanical devices, may require suitable rotational speeds for operation on a micron to sub-micron length scale. Unfortunately, conventional designs, such as air bearing rotors and the like, break down due to mechanical and vibrational instabilities, such as mass-induced mechanical instabilities caused by the addition of magnetic materials to the rotor.

This versatile microball bearing supported microgenerator improves electromechanical devices and methods for forming them. It allows an electromechanical device, such as a motor or generator or other suitable MEMS device, to be operated at sufficient speeds (e.g., rotational rate of a rotor or the like) to function on a micron length scale or below.

Inventor(s)

Mustafa Beyaz
C. Michael Waits

Date Issued 

07/14/2015

Patent No. 

9,083,208