University of Twente Student Theses


Characterisation of a nano-g accelerometer

Heidemann, Claudia (2018) Characterisation of a nano-g accelerometer.

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Abstract:Seismic motion is a noise source, which is present everywhere in the world. Unless there are extreme outbursts of seismic motion, we as humans do not notice this noise source. However, when trying to detect gravitational waves, seismic motion will cause fluctuations in the local gravitational field and couple to the test masses of interferometric gravitational wave detectors, such as Virgo (Italy) and LIGO (USA). This noise is called Newtonian noise, which unfortunately cannot be shielded. However, it is possible to measure the seismic activity around the detector and subtract it from the detector output. For this purpose, the Dutch research institute Nikhef based in Amsterdam, is working on an array of ultra-sensitive MEMS accelerometers. In this paper, a nano-g accelerometer is characterised by detecting its resonance frequencies in all six degrees of freedom and examining the curvature of comb beams and the proofmass. Furthermore, the needed power to compress all the springs for each step and the weight of the proofmass is measured. It was also found that the proofmass gets easily stuck because of oversized stoppers. Consequently, this will help to improve the next design and make it more reliable in its operation in a seismic network.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:EEMCS: Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
Subject:33 physics, 50 technical science in general, 51 materials science, 52 mechanical engineering
Programme:Electrical Engineering BSc (56953)
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