Micro-Mechanical Tunneling Transducer
Department of Energy
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15 Cabot Road, Woburn, MA, 01801
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractPrecisely sensing nuclear detonations is critical to preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Extreme sensitivity on the order of approximately 0.5 ng/sqrt(Hz) is desired, along with robustness and low cost. All three axes of acceleration must be detected. However, current sensors are too large or too insensitive to be widely distributed in a sensor network. To overcome these limitations, this project will develop a Micro-Mechanical Tunneling Transducer, based on the physics of atomic tunneling currents. The device will be extremely sensitive, measure simultaneously in three axes, have very low noise, and be inexpensive to manufacture in large quantities. Commercial Applications and other Benefits as described by the awardee: In addition to the monitoring of nuclear detonations, the vibration/acceleration sensor should benefit other geophysical applications such as the Global Seismographic Network, and also find use in the aerospace, medicine, and robotics industries.
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