Optical Differential Microphone

Description:

Optical Sensing in a Directional MEMS Microphone

 

This micro-machined differential microphone utilizes an optical means to convert the sound-induced motion of a diaphragm into an electronic signal. Because it can be manufactured with high sensitivity and low noise, this lightweight microphone design offers a means to improve hearing aids and cellular phone applications. This invention overcomes changes in capacitance performance limitations by using an optical detection scheme based on a low-power semiconductor laser and optical gratings incorporated into the microphone diaphragm.  Because the overall compliance of the microphone diaphragm is adjustable over a very wide range, it is possible to achieve high sensitivity and very low noise performance.

 

ADVANTAGES:

 

The optical design permits the use of much more flexible and smaller diaphragms, which can be made using silicon micro-fabrication techniques.

 

It achieves higher signal to noise ratios than are possible in capacitive sensing schemes.

 

It  has a much lower noise detection floor relatively low power consumption, and is lightweight.

 

Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Scott Hancock
Director, IP Management and Licensing
Binghamton University
(607) 777-5874
shancock@binghamton.edu
Inventors:
Ronald Miles
F. Degertekin
Keywords:
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