The Model 645 arbitrary waveform generator from Berkeley Nucleonics is said to be an effective tool in determining complex driving waveforms.
According to the company, micro-electromechanical systems (MEMSs) require complex driving waveforms to achieve optimal performance and device lifetime.
Often, many of the same devices are needed for a given application.
Cost considerations usually require these devices to be operated open loop.
Optimising the driving waveform to these devices can improve the performance and lifetime of MEMS devices, according to the company.
MEMS switch lifetimes can be maximised by careful selection of the driving waveform.
It has been shown that the number of reliable switch operations on a particular radio-frequency MEMS switch can range from 10*4 to 10*8 depending on the actuator drive voltage level.
It has also been shown that tailoring the waveform shape can increase the switching speed by reducing contact bounce.
An example of such a waveform is a pulse to activate the switch, a period of no signal and then a hold pulse at a level much lower than the activation pulse.
An ARB is used to adjust the timing and amplitude of each phase of the drive signal.
With an ARB, the user can even adjust the shape of the driving pulses from step function to bandwidth-limited drives.
The Model 645 can store complete sets of the 14-bit, 256K waveform so that the user can tweak, store and compare it with other waveforms.
The Model 645 offers 14-bit resolution and a 125MSa/sec sampling rate.