Research Interests: MEMS-based sensors and systems.
Magnetic sensors and actuators
Signal Processing and Recovery; Image Processing.
Analog and Digital Circuit Design and Testing.Job Interests: post-doc, industry R&D
Gerardo graduated from UC Davis in 2006 with a BS in Electrical and Computer Engineering. He joined the UCD MEMS Lab research group as a graduate student in 2006 working with Prof. Horsley. He is finishing his Ph.D from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at UC Davis.
Micromechanically-Enhanced Magnetoresistive Sensors [BPN539]
Magnetoresistive (MR) sensors are highly sensitive magnetic field sensors but suffer from large 1/f noise. We have developed a new
approach for reducing the 1/f noise in MR sensors by using a MEMS resonator to mechanically modulate the magnetic field signal to
a high frequency, where the 1/f noise vanishes. This mechanism improves the MR element sensitivity by 2-3 orders of magnitude in
the low frequency sensing range. A fully integrated fabrication process was developed, where the MR sensor is fabricated first on the
surface of a SOI wafer and the MEMS actuators are fabricated last. Our first generation device, reported at previous IAB meetings,
integrated electrostatic MEMS and magnetic tunnel junction (MTJs) MR sensors. A second generation device is under development,
consisting of a highly sensitive spin valve (SV) MR sensor and two AlN piezoelectric cantilevers with integrated magnetic flux
concentrators. This new approach should bring the SV sensitivity down to the picoTesla range, making this hybrid device suitable for
use in medical imaging, bionics, and any other application where ultra low magnetic sensing may be required.