Gayathri Pillai

Assistant Professor at the Center for Nano Science and Engineering, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru, India
Presenter Bio

Gayathri Pillai is an Assistant Professor at the Center for Nano Science and Engineering, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru, India. Before joining IISc, she worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute of NanoEngineering and MicroSystems (iNEMS), National Tsing Hua University, Taiwan. Gayathri received her Ph.D. and MS degrees in 2020 and 2015 respectively from iNEMS. Her research focuses primarily on fabrication, design, and characterization of piezoelectric Micro and Nano Electromechanical Systems with a special focus on Radio Frequency communication module development, nonlinear device physics study, piezoelectric material investigations, acoustic sensors/actuators and exploration of photonics integration with acoustic transducers.

Piezoelectric MEMS resonator research has been gaining substantial traction in recent times and it has been advancing on multiple fronts such as micro-resonator design, fabrication techniques, integration with circuitry, packaging, etc. Resonators are frequency selective tanks that sustain standing waves within the device geometry at designed frequencies. Variations in the resonator’s output amplitude or frequency are monitored for sensor applications. Piezoelectricity transduction-based devices are an integral part of inertial sensors, infrared sensors, energy harvesters, radio frequency communication front end modules, etc. To improve the functionality of the aforementioned modules it is cardinal to understand the underlying concepts of resonator design, material selection, and performance enhancement techniques. In this tutorial, a comprehensive overview of various piezoelectric thin-film material properties along with different commercial microfabrication platforms with CMOS integration facilities shall be presented. A synopsis of the several acoustic and material engineering approaches to enhance the figure of merit of the resonator will also be elaborated. Piezoelectricity is a very promising field and its future avenues are expected to cover a wide spectrum of possibilities such as 5G communication, quantum processing, frequency combs, photonics integration, gesture sensors, inertial measurement units, etc.

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