Aluminum nitride thin film based surface acoustic wave sensors

A. Kabulski, V. R. Pagán, D. Cortes, R. Burda, O. M. Mukdadi, D. Korakakis

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) devices have drawn increasing interest in the field of sensor devices for the accurate detection of gases and liquids. In order to detect a range of gases and liquids, of which some will be capable of attacking the active material of the SAW device, a robust material is desired for fabrication. Aluminum Nitride (A1N) acts as a piezoelectric SAW material that can withstand both high temperatures and harsh environments. SAW devices have been fabricated by reactively sputtering an A1N film directly on silicon as well as on a freestanding SiO2/Si diaphragm. The selective absorption of the gases or liquids modifies the mechanical properties of the surface of the device which can be detected as a change in resonance and phase velocity of the surface waves. Experimental analysis has been conducted to observe dispersion curves, Rayleigh velocities, and resonance frequencies and the results were found to qualitatively agree with those modeled by theoretical simulation. These results indicate the ability of further analyses to optimize the design and sensitivity of SAW sensors for medicine, engineering, and basic biology and chemistry sciences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-180
Number of pages6
JournalMaterials Research Society Symposium Proceedings
StatePublished - 2009
Event2008 MRS Fall Meeting - Boston, MA, United States
Duration: Dec 1 2008Dec 5 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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