RF MEMs variable capacitors for tunable filters

by Charles L. Goldsmith, Andrew Malczewski, Zhimin J. Yao, Shea Chen, John Ehmke, David H. Hinzel
International Journal of RF and Microwave Computer-Aided Engineering ()


An RF MEMs (microelectromechanical system) variable capacitor has been demonstrated with a 22:1 tuning range, tuning from 1.5 to 33.2 pF of capacitance. This capacitor was constructed using bistable MEMs membrane capacitors with individual tuning ranges of 70:1 to 100:1, control voltages in the 30–55 V range, switching speeds less than 10 μS, and operating frequencies as high as 40 GHz. These devices may eventually provide a viable alternative to electronic varactors with improved tuning range and lower loss. ©1999 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Int J RF and Microwave CAE 9: 362–374, 1999.

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