Study of Characteristics of Liquid-Based Bridge Structure as Mechanical Elements
The intriguing mechanical characteristics of liquid bridge have drawn significant attentions in micro scale applications. In the present work, we first study liquid-based bridges as reversible elements in multifunctional mechanical micro devices. The dependence of the liquid shape and rupture distance on the intrinsic contact angles, liquid volumes, pattern radius ratios, as well as the capillary force is characterized numerically. A comprehensive investigation is also conducted about liquid-based rings as bearing structures in electrostatically driven micro rotary stages. The numerical results of vertical force and viscous force help optimize the geometry and operation design of the liquid-based ring structure, while the horizontal displacement and tilting analysis contribute to prevent potential mechanical failures in fabrication and assembling. The modified numerical models and the capillary performance characterization methods can be extensively applied to liquid-based bridge studies in other specific applications.