COMSOL Quick Start

V ERSION

4.0 Beta 2

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Quick Start © COPYRIGHT 1998–2010 by COMSOL AB. All rights reserved
Protected by U.S. Patents 7,519,518; 7,596,474; and 7,623,991. Patents pending.
The software described in this document is furnished under a license agreement. The software may be used or copied only under the terms of the license agreement. No part of this manual may be photocopied or reproduced in any form without prior written consent from COMSOL AB. COMSOL, COMSOL Multiphysics, COMSOL Reaction Engineering Lab, and FEMLAB are registered trademarks of COMSOL AB. Other product or brand names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders. Version: February 2010 COMSOL 4.0 Beta 2 Part number: CM010004

Quick Start

Introduction Overview of the COMSOL Desktop Setting Up Your First Model Creating the Model - Part I Creating the Model - Part II Creating a Model - Part III

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making it easier to manage all material properties from one window.0 it is easier to organize and design models with the intuitive structure of the COMSOL Desktop. The Help Desk provides access to the complete documentation set. Dynamic help: The new context-dependent help enables easy browsing with extended search functionality. Improved graphics: Faster. The sequences can be edited— changes are automatically updated across the model. Sequencing: You can now build custom model sequences to generate your geometry. mesh. Where the window is located on your desktop depends on your personalized layout. Material-oriented modeling procedure: Materials are now assigned to a domain. By default. better looking graphics with improved accuracy over steep-gradient areas. you can save and view many solutions. a docked window containing associated settings displays at the same time. The following are the most important updates to the graphical user interface: New Layout In COMSOL 4. When you select a node in the Model Builder. Multiple solutions: With the new layout. Personalized desktop: Control how you organize the COMSOL Desktop layout—your preferences are saved for the next time you open COMSOL Multiphysics. physics. The Model Builder (previously called Model Tree) displays all the features of your model in one place. Model settings: Access to the model settings are easier and more intuitive.0 introduces many new ideas and concepts to make it easier for you to create models.Introduction COMSOL 4. and results. 2 . studies. the material is used in all physics interfaces for this domain. and compare and contrast the results in the Results node.

Custom labels: Create custom labels to define selections of domains. The final release of COMSOL 4. As you run the example in this manual. • 3D geometry operations that can be performed in combination with imported geometries. We expect it to also be backward compatible with this Beta version. COMSOL version 4 also introduces: • Geometry parameter sweeps with full associativity.0 Beta version cannot open MPH-files from previous COMSOL versions. edges. and points. 3 . • New parallel solvers and higher solver performance. Note: This COMSOL 4. boundaries. These selections are available in domain and boundary settings for the model physics interfaces.5a. you will discover a lot of other improvements and new functionality. • New and enhanced physics interfaces and predefined multiphysics couplings.0 will be backward compatible with COMSOL 3. This substantially extends the possibility to manually repair imported CAD geometries.

for example. The model is set up by either using the predefined branch order (from the top down) or by designing it in your own way. where you can set up study sequences including various analysis types. and the Graphics window. the Settings window. for global parameters and functions. The Model branch is furnished with functionality for local definitions and there is an option to define global parameters across all the models. the Model branch. Physics. Materials.Overview of the COMSOL Desktop The COMSOL Desktop includes the Main menu. A corresponding 4 . You can add more than one model to the Model Builder. the Messages window. if you need to have part of your model in 2D and other parts in 3D. The main branches contain general functionality including: the Global Definitions branch. the Study branch. the Model Builder. or when setting up a system model with several components. MODEL BUILDER AND SETTINGS WINDOWS The Model Builder controls the modeling procedure. Context menus are available for many model operations—just right-click the relevant node in the Model Builder and select the one you want. Geometry. and the Results branch. and Meshes. Each model can be defined differently in the one MPH-file. for local Definitions.

boundary. You can also highlight and add or remove items in the selection list by using the Add to Selection and Remove from Selection buttons in the Settings window. the geometry in the Graphics window highlights and color-codes the corresponding selection. while the wall boundaries correspond to 5 . or point) and then right-click anywhere in the Graphics window. mesh. boundary. The Model Builder is displayed next to the Settings window. a domain. and click on a domain. edge. edge. the heat sink boundaries in the model correspond to one selection. In the case below. When you are working in the Settings window. To add a part of the geometry to a selection list you left-click on the part (for example. or point. or results plot as defined by the applicable Model Builder node. The figure below shows the selection list for boundaries—select a boundary manually or use a predefined selection. GRAPHICS WINDOW The Graphics window displays the visual representation of your geometry.Settings window displays next to the Model Builder where additional properties and parameters can be fine-tuned.

The selection list displays the selected boundaries where a specific setting is applied. 6 . This makes it possible to select different color tables.a second selection. and Clear Selection (red cross). Remove from Selection (minus sign). such as Rainbow and GrayScale for the different surface plots. The buttons to the right are the Add to Selection (plus sign).

causes a bending of the actuator. which means that the involved physics phenomena are fully coupled. The material properties of polysilicon are temperature dependent. The electric current through the hot arms increases the temperature in the actuator.0. The greater expansion of the hot-arms. is obtained through Joule heating (resistive heating). This gives an overview of the inputs required in your model and the properties available for this material. visualize your results. Geometry sequencing: The power of this feature is demonstrated when you run a parameterized geometry sweep. Material properties: All material properties are listed under the Materials node. The parameterized geometry sweep automatically runs the sequence of operations for all your model settings for different dimensions of the modeled device and administers your results.Setting Up Your First Model This exercise describes the modeling procedure and demonstrates several of the most important new functionalities in COMSOL V4: Sequencing: The power of sequencing is exemplified when you: define and create the mesh of the geometry. Physics Principles of the Actuator The actuator is activated through thermal expansion. which in turn causes thermal expansion and changes the electrical conductivity of the material. MODEL CONCEPT AND DESIGN This example model consists of a two-hot-arm thermal actuator made of polysilicon. compared to the cold arm. define the study sequence (which automatically generates your solver sequence). and thus displace the actuator. The following points are relevant to the model design and how to implement it in COMSOL 4. The material properties needed by any physics interface display in the Settings for a defined material. The temperature increase required to deform the two hot arms. and. 7 .

are described next. heat conduction with heat generation. An electric potential is applied between the bases of the hot arms’ anchors.The actuator’s operation thus involves three coupled physics phenomena: electric current conduction. Upper surface Substrate 240 µm Hot arms 3 µm 2 µm Dimple Cold arm Anchors Boundary Conditions and Constraints The boundary conditions and constraints. which describe the actuator’s interaction with its environment. Ground Applied voltage 8 . and structural stresses and strains due to thermal expansion. The cold arm anchor and all other surfaces are electrically insulated.

Note: This is accurately described by a convective cooling condition. Heat flux = h(T amb) -T T Fixed temperature Fixed temperature Fixed temperature All three arms are mechanically fixed at the base of the three anchors. all other boundaries interact thermally with the surroundings by conduction through thin layers of air. Since the structure is sandwiched. The heat transfer coefficient is given by the thermal conductivity of air divided by the distance to the surrounding surfaces for the system. Fixed Fixed Roller 9 . The dimples can move freely in the plane of the substrate (xy-plane in the figure) but do not move in the direction perpendicular to the substrate (the z-direction).The temperature of the base of the three anchors and the three dimples is fixed to that of the substrate’s constant temperature. different heat transfer coefficients are used for the actuator’s upper and other surfaces. even though there is no convection. In this exercise.

EXERCISE OVER VIEW This exercise is divided into three parts: The first step treats Joule heating only. you will simulate. You will also see a transient cool-down when the current over the actuator is turned off. Initially.Analysis When analyzing the actuator you will get the displacement as a function of the potential drop and the temperature. This gives you an idea of the temperature increase obtained at different applied potentials over the actuator. Creating the Model . 10 . You can easily extend the analysis for evaluation of different geometry dimensions. The second and third part of the exercise are carried out with a physics interface for Electromagnetic Heating with Thermal Stress. In this case. the stationary current distribution and temperature field in the thermal actuator. The third step highlights parameterized geometry sweeps. The physics phenomena and the boundary conditions are described through a physics interface for Electromagnetic Heating in the first part of the exercise.Part I DEFINING MODEL 1 AND SELECTING THE PHYSICS 1 Go to the Model Wizard window. through a study sequence. The study sequence automatically sets up the parametric solver for different values of the potential over the actuator. The 3D option button is selected by default. 2 Click the Next button (the right direction arrow) on the Select Space Dimension toolbar. thus generating an estimated displacement as a function of potential. The second step covers thermal expansion. the actuator geometry is parameterized to investigate differing hot-arm lengths on the actuator’s operation.

select Custom Studies. such as the electric conductivity. can be temperature dependent. select Preset Studies>Stationary.3 In the Add Physics page. The resistive losses generate heat while the material properties. Context-sensitive Help Finish Next Back Add or Remove Selected buttons 4 Click the Add Selected (the blue + sign) button. This physics interface contains a predefined multiphysics coupling between the conduction of electric current and thermal analysis. The Custom Studies are not directly defined by a physics interface. 5 Click the Next button (the right direction arrow). and possibly modify the equations. under Studies. 7 Click the Finish button (the black and white checkered flag). and in some cases they may not even be relevant for the selected physics. The physics interfaces contain a set of Preset Studies to define the appropriate equations and solver sequences adapted for optimal performance. If you want to set up the solver sequences manually. 11 . select Predefined Multiphysics>Electromagnetic Heating>Joule Heating (jh). 6 On the Select Study Type page. otherwise use a Preset Study.

Remember to regularly click Save or Ctrl S so you don’t lose your work. right-click Model 1 and select Rename.04[W/(m*K)]/100[um] 10[V] 0[s] The heat transfer coefficient for the upper surface of the actuator is htc_us and for all other surfaces is htc_s. is used to define a step function that turns off the potential difference over the actuator at a given instant. right-click Global Definitions and select Parameters. The Settings window opens to the Parameters page. t. The heat transfer coefficient is estimated from the thermal conductivity of air divided by the distance to the substrate (htc_s) or to other parts of the system. right-click Global Definitions and select Functions>Step. enter or copy and paste the following into the table: NAME EXPRESSION DESCRIPTION htc_s 0. The Settings window opens to the Step page and a Step 1 node is added under Global Definitions on the Model Builder window. Click OK. The expressions for the heat transfer coefficient can also be defined as temperature-dependent variables if necessary. 3 In the Model Builder window. 12 . The Settings window opens to the Geometry page where you start adding parameters to the model. The time parameter. ADDING GLOBAL PARAMETERS 1 In the Model Builder window. 4 Under the Parameters section. 2 Enter Thermal Actuator in the New name field. ADDING A STEP FUNCTION TO MODEL 1 1 In the Model Builder window.04[W/(m*K)]/2[um] heat transfer coefficient for all surfaces except upper heat transfer coefficient for the upper surface applied voltage time htc_us DV t 0. This is because all other surfaces are not connected to the substrate and have a fixed temperature.8 Click the Save button to save the file on your computer or network.

5 In the Graphics window. enter 1. enter 0. opening it from the browser. right-click Geometry 1 and select Import. 3 Click the Browse button and locate the Model Library folder on your computer. verify the step Size of transition zone. 13 .2 On the Step page. under Smoothing.mphbin. click the Zoom Extents button on the toolbar. 2 On the Import page. under the Parameters section: a In the Location field. 5 On the Step page. c In the To field. b In the From field. under Import. under Function Name. It is used later to relax the potential across the actuator. enter off in the field. ADDING A GEOMETRY TO MODEL 1 1 In the Model Builder. A plot displays in the Graphics window. enter 0. select COMSOL Multiphysics file from the Geometry import list. The file is located in COMSOL40Beta2>models>COMSOL_Multiphysics>Multiphysics. 3 On the Step page.05. 4 Click Import. 4 Click the Plot button to the right on the Settings window toolbar. Inspect this step function. Select the file thermal_actuator. The Settings window opens to the Import page and an Import 1 node is added under Geometry 1 on the Model Builder window.

ADDING GEOMETRIC SCOPE TO MODEL 1 1 In the Model Builder window. If required. Go to YZ View Select Box Wireframe Rendering b Click the Select Box button and click-drag a box around the lower boundaries like the image below. 3 To select the substrate contact boundaries of the dimples and the three anchors: a On the Graphics toolbar click the Wireframe Rendering and then the Go to YZ View buttons. The Settings window opens to the Selection page and a Selection 1 node is added to the model sequence. right-click Definitions under the Thermal Actuator node and choose Selection. 14 . under Geometric Scope. The lower boundaries are now highlighted in red. select Boundary from the Geometric entity level list. click the Zoom Extents or Zoom In buttons. 2 On the Selection page.

. and 82) are highlighted in blue and added to the Selection input list.Under Material Contents. . 50. the Properties used by the physics interfaces table lists all the material properties required by the physics interfaces defined for the model. its Value is assigned k(T). 6 In the Model Builder window. under Geometric Scope. right-click Materials and select Open Material Browser. the Selection list defaults to All domains and material specific properties are added to these sections. the Value is assigned sigma(T).The Thermal conductivity is also a function of temperature. right-click Selection 1 and select Rename. 5 Using the graphics toolbar and mouse. .4 Right-click anywhere in the Graphics window.In the Property called Electric conductivity. 3 Right-click Polysilicon and click Add Material to Model. 70. ADDING MATERIALS 1 In the Model Builder window. select Common Materials>Polysilicon. 2 On the Material Browser page. It should look like the image below. The boundaries (10. Note: Remember to regularly save the MPH-file so you don’t lose your work. 4 In the Settings window. which means that it is a function of the temperature. 30. 7 Enter Substrate Contact in the New name field. 15 . 76. a function taken from the COMSOL Multiphysics’ internal Material Library. The Settings window opens to the Material page and a Polysilicon node is added to the model sequence under Materials. rotate the actuator geometry to your desired view.

This sets a zero voltage on the upper anchor. right-click Joule Heating and select the second listing of Electric Currents> Ground. the third edge settings. select boundary 10 directly from the geometry in the Graphics window. 16 .ADDING THE PHYSICS Joule Heating (jh) 1 On the Model Builder. and the fourth section contains point settings. the second boundary settings. Domain settings Boundary settings Edge settings Point settings 2 On the Ground page. To find boundary 10 you may have to rotate the actuator geometry. Note: The first section of the menu contains domain settings. Click to highlight the geometry as in the image below and click the Add to Selection button in the Settings window.

17 . under Electric Potential enter DV*off(t) in the V0 field. This activates the previously defined step function (off). This constrains the temperature of the boundaries. select boundary 30 and click the Add to Selection button on the Electric Potential page. in the Boundaries Selection list. 7 On the Convective Cooling page. 9 On the Convective Cooling page. enter the previously defined parameter htc_s in the h field. select Electric Currents>Electric Potential. In the second section of the menu. select the previously defined Substrate Contact from the Selection list. select All boundaries. 10 Right-click Joule Heating. select Heat Transfer>Temperature.3 Right-click Joule Heating. 4 On the Graphics window. In the second section of the menu. connected to the substrate.1 s. select Heat Transfer>Convective Cooling. 5 On the Electric Potential page. 11 Under Boundaries.15 K). 8 Under Boundaries. 6 Right-click Joule Heating. All boundaries are added to the Selection list. From the first section. to begin switching off the potential difference over the actuator at t = 0 and over a time period of 0. a temperature boundary condition will replace it for some boundaries. select boundary 4 (the top surface) and click the Remove from Selection button (the minus sign). under Heat Flux. You can add the cooling to all other boundaries at this point. to the substrate’s temperature (293. On boundary 4 you will use another cooling condition.

The physics are defined for the Joule heating problem. 4 Click the Build Selected button. A mesh is applied to the geometry as below. under Mesh 1 node. 13 On the Graphics window. click Size. In the second section of the menu. 14 On the Convective Cooling page. under Heat Flux. select Heat Transfer>Convective Cooling. Build buttons 18 . under Predefined Element Size select Fine from the Size list. enter htc_us in the h field. 3 Right-click Mesh 1 and select Free Tetrahedral. ADDING MESHING 1 In the Model Builder window. located in the Settings window toolbar. locate and left-click on boundary 4 (the top surface of the geometry). 2 On the Size page.12 Right-click Joule Heating. then right-click boundary 4 to add it to the Selection list.

This gives you the possibility to quickly compare results using different meshes. right-click Study 1 and select Compute to automatically create a solver sequence and compute the solution. You can select the desired mesh in the Mesh list. 1 In the Model Builder. right-click Thermal Actuator and select Mesh. This runs the simulation for 0. you can select which mesh you want to use for each study step. using a swept mesh often gives higher accuracy without adding to the solution time. a tetrahedral mesh and a swept one. under Data. PLOTTING THE RESULTS 3D Plot Group 1 The default plot shows the Electric Potential through the actuator. The Surface page opens in the Settings window.0. click Surface 1 from 3D Plot Group 1. to the right of the Expression section. 3 In the Model Builder. You can then continue creating this second mesh according to the meshing instructions in part II of this exercise. right-click Study 1 and select Time Dependent.01 s. If you have created two meshes.Note: For thin-layered structures. Select Joule Heating>Temperature (T). click 3D Plot Group 1. If you want to explore this option. ADDING A STUDY AND COMPUTING 1 In the Model Builder. 19 .3 s providing output results every 0.0. select Cyclic from the Color Table list. 3 Under Coloring and Style. click the Replace Expression (arrow pointing downwards) button. 5 On the 3D Plot Group page.01. 2 On the Surface page. under the Results node. select 0 from the Time list. 4 In the Model Builder.3) in the Times field. click the Stationary node. Go to the Settings window and locate the Mesh Selection section. 2 On the Time Dependent page. under Study Settings enter range(0. For example.

click on the geometry to select edge 52—it is along the arm of the actuator (see below). Confirm that the number 52 displays in the Selection field. 2 Right-click 1D Plot Group 3 and select Line Graph.6 Click the Plot button to display the stationary solution prior to the cooling-down of the actuator. 5 In the Settings window. to the right of the Selection section. 4 In the Graphics window. 3 On the Line Graph page. in the upper-right corner of the Y-Axis Data section. The Settings window opens to the Line Graph page. Select Heat Transfer >Temperature (T). click the Replace Expression button (arrow pointing downwards). 20 . Plot Group ID 1 In the Model Builder. right-click Results and select Plot Group 1D. click the Activate Selection button. This activates the geometry in the Graphics window.

Save your model if you would like to return to it again later. You can also rename your nodes under the Results node as required. In the next example. to start the next exercise. click on the New button the Main toolbar. The Results Analysis This plot shows the temperature during the cool-down process in the longer of the two hot arms when the potential across the actuator is relaxed according to the function off. y-axis label. Otherwise. You have now simulated the stationary and a transient study of the heating and cooling of the actuator. you will study the thermal expansion of the same component due to this Joule heating. 21 .6 Click the Plot button. This completes part I of the exercise. You can select the 1D Plot Group 3 node in the Model Builder and enter x-axis label. and title for your plot.

2 Enter Thermal Actuator in the New name field. This physics interface contains a predefined multiphysics coupling between the conduction and conservation of electric charges. 3 In the Model Builder window. The 3D option button is selected by default. Click OK. 6 On the Select Study Type page. select Preset Studies>Stationary.Part II DEFINING MODEL 1 AND SELECTING THE PHYSICS 1 Click the New button on the Main toolbar to open the Model Wizard window. thermal analysis. 2 Click the Next button (the right direction arrow) on the Select Space Dimension toolbar. under Studies. such as the electric and thermal conductivities and the density of the material.Creating the Model . and thermal stresses and strains. 5 Click the Next button (the right direction arrow). 4 Click the Add Selected (the blue + sign) button. right-click Model 1 and select Rename. 3 In the Add Physics page. are temperature dependent. right-click Global Definitions and select Parameters. Remember to regularly click Save or Ctrl S so you don’t lose your work. 8 Click the Save button to save the file on your computer or network. ADDING GLOBAL PARAMETERS 1 In the Model Builder window. 7 Click the Finish button (the black and white checkered flag). The resistive losses generate heat while the material properties. 22 . select Predefined Multiphysics>Electromagnetic Heating with Thermal Stress>Joule Heating and Thermal Expansion (tem).

This is because all other surfaces are not connected to the substrate and have a fixed temperature.04[W/(m*K)]/100[um] DV t 10[V] 0[s] The heat transfer coefficient for the upper surface of the actuator is htc_us and for all other surfaces is htc_s. ADDING A GEOMETRY TO MODEL 1 Follow the same procedures as in “Adding a Geometry to Model 1” on page 13. 23 . t. right-click Joule Heating and Thermal Expansion and select the second listing of Solid Mechanics>Fixed Constraint. ASSIGNING GEOMETRIC SCOPE TO MODEL 1 Follow the same procedures as in “Adding Geometric Scope to Model 1” on page 14. ADDING THE PHYSICS Joule Heating and Thermal Expansion (tem) 1 On the Model Builder. ADDING MATERIALS Follow the same procedures as in “Adding Materials” on page 15. The time parameter. The expressions for the heat transfer coefficient can also be defined as temperature-dependent variables if necessary.4 Under the Parameters section. The heat transfer coefficient is estimated from the thermal conductivity of air divided by the distance to the substrate (htc_s) or to other parts of the system. enter or copy and paste the following into the table: NAME EXPRESSION DESCRIPTION htc_s 0. is used to define a step function that turns off the potential difference over the actuator at a given instant.04[W/(m*K)]/2[um] heat transfer coefficient for all surfaces except upper heat transfer coefficient for the upper surface applied voltage time htc_us 0.

select boundaries 70. right-click Joule Heating and Thermal Expansion. On this boundary you will use another cooling condition.Note: The first section of the menu contains domain settings. 76. select Heat Transfer>Convective Cooling. and 50 (anchors) to include in the Selection section. select boundaries 10. and 82 (the dimples) to include in the Selection section. a temperature boundary condition will replace it for some boundaries. 24 . 4 On the Roller page. 30. select All boundaries from the Selection list. the second boundary settings. 8 Under Heat Flux enter htc_s in the h field. right-click Joule Heating and Thermal Expansion. 2 On the Fixed Constraint page. 5 In the Model Builder. select Solid Mechanics>Roller. under Boundaries. In the second section of the menu. the third edge settings. 3 In the Model Builder. and the fourth section contains point settings. This allows these boundaries to move freely over the face of the substrate while fixing their position perpendicular to this surface. You can add the cooling to all other boundaries at this point. 7 Click 4 in the Selection list and Remove from Selection (click the minus sign). This fixes these boundaries to the substrate. 6 On the Convective Cooling page. In the second section of the menu.

13 On the Convective Cooling page.9 In the Model Builder. select Heat Transfer>Convective Cooling. 15 Select boundary 10 and add it to the Selection list on the Ground page. select Electric Currents>Electric Potential. In the second section of the menu. In the second section of the menu. 12 Select boundary 4 (the upper surface of the geometry) and add it to the Selection list on the Convective Cooling page. under Boundaries. right-click Joule Heating and Thermal Expansion. enter htc_us in the h field 14 Right-click Joule Heating and Thermal Expansion. select Electric Currents>Ground. In the second section of the menu. 10 On the Temperature page. 11 Right-click Joule Heating and Thermal Expansion. 25 . under Heat Flux. select Substrate Contact from the Selection list. 16 Right-click Joule Heating and Thermal expansion. In the second section of the menu. select Heat Transfer>Temperature. This sets a zero voltage on the upper anchor according to the figure below.15 K). This constrains the temperature of the boundaries connected to the substrate to the substrate’s temperature (293.

6 With a Fine mesh. 7 On the Swept page. 1 In the Model Builder window. 26 . as above. enter DV in the V0 field. under Domains. 5 Click the Build Selected button. under Predefined Element Size select Fine from the Size list. 3 Right-click Mesh 1 and select Free Triangular. under Electric Potential. select Substrate Contact. then select the Free Triangular 1 node and click Build Selected again to refine the mesh. ADDING MESHING There are many different ways of meshing your geometry. A mesh is applied on the selected boundaries. From the Selection list. the Geometric entity level defaults to Boundary. If you want to explore the swept meshing functionality for meshing thin layered structures. click Size. You can find the instructions for creating such a mesh in part I of this exercise.17 Select boundary 30 and add it to the Selection list on the Electric Potential page. right-click Mesh 1 and select Swept. under Mesh 1 node. The Size node controls the size of the free triangular mesh. 18 On the Electric Potential page. follow the instructions below. The simplest option is to create a tetrahedral mesh. located in the Settings window toolbar. You can also select Finer as a Predefined Element Size. 2 On the Size page. 4 On the Free Triangular page. select Domain from the Geometric entity level list.

see figure below. 18 On the Swept page. 9 In the Model Builder. click the Build Selected button. A 2-elements deep mesh is added to the anchors and dimples (see below). b Select (domain) 1 and click the Remove from Selection button. enter 2 in the Number of elements field. under Domains. right-click Mesh 1 and select Free Triangular. right-click Mesh 1 and select Swept. select Domain from the Level list. 13 In the Model Builder. 11 In the Model Builder. 17 In the Model Builder. 16 On the Settings window. under Boundaries. which is the underside of the main part of the actuator. right-click Swept 1 and select Distribution. 27 . select Boundary from the Geometric entity level list. 10 On the Distribution page. click the Swept 1 node. 14 On the Free Triangular page. Note: You can refine the mesh size along the mesh sweep direction by changing the number of elements parameter in the Distribution node. 12 On the Settings window.8 To select Domains 2–7 only: a Select All domains from the Selection list. 15 Select boundary 3 only. click the Build Selected button. under Distribution.

3 In the Continuation parameter field. 4 In the Model Builder. 23 On the Settings window. and then solving repeatedly with 1 V intervals to 12 V. 28 . select the Continuation check box. enter DV. In the Parameter values field. PLOTTING THE RESULTS 3D Plot Group 1 The default plot shows the displacement of the actuator as a surface plot. 21 On the Distribution page. click the Build All button A mesh sequence representing the Model Builder sequence is built according to the figure below. enter 2 in the Number of elements field. 20 In the Model Builder.1. In the final release. Note: This operation is specific for the current V4 beta version. 2 On the Stationary page. right-click > Swept 2 and select Distribution. you will be able to select the Parametric solver from the Study branch. right-click Study 1 and select Compute to automatically create a solver sequence and compute the solution. This simulates the actuator starting with a voltage drop of 5 V. which is the main part of the actuator geometry. enter range(5. By clicking the Build All button. click the > Swept 2 node. You can edit the settings for any node in the sequence. under Distribution.12). the whole sequence is updated according to any changes. right-click Study 1 and select Stationary 1. under Study Settings. ADDING A STUDY AND COMPUTING 1 In the Model Builder.19 Select domain 1 only. 22 In the Model Builder.

c Click to highlight boundary 168 and click the Remove from Selection button. 3 Under Coloring and Style. to the right of the Expression section. 6 Click the Plot button.1 In the Model Builder. 4 On the Model Builder window. 5 On the Deformation page. click Surface 1. under Selection. to the right of the Expression section. The Surface page opens in the Settings window. 29 . 3 On the Point Graph page. right-click Results and select Plot Group 1D. Select Heat Transfer>Temperature (T). 2 Right-click ID Plot Group 3 and select Point Graph. Plot Group 1D 1 In the Model Builder. click the Replace Expression (arrow pointing downwards) button. To select this individual point: a Select All points from the Selection list. 2 On the Surface page. select point 167 (a point on the corner furthest from the anchors on the top arm of the actuator). Click the Remove from Selection button. under the Results node and 3D Plot Group 1. click Replace Expression and choose Solid Mechanics>Displacement field (u). b Click on the first boundary in the Selection list (1) and hold the Shift key down to select from 1–166. right-click Surface 1 and select Deformation. select Cyclic from the Color Table list.

choose Solid Mechanics>Total Displacement (disp_tem). This is damped by the fact that the electric conductivity of polysilicon decreases with temperature. 9 Click the Plot button. since the heat source is proportional to the square of the current density. select Expression from the Parameter list. 8 On the Model Builder. click Replace Expression. 7 Enter DV in the Expression field. 5 From the menu. under Plot Settings. 30 .4 In the upper-right corner of the Expression section. click 1D Plot Group 3. Note: The displacement (blue line) increases slightly exponentially. 6 Under the X-Axis Data section. On the ID Plot Group page. enter Voltage [V] in the x-axis label field and Displacement [m] in the y-axis label field.

the actuator geometry is parameterized. click the New button in the Main toolbar. to start the next part of the exercise. click the Parameters node. In the next part. Creating a Model .This completes part II of the exercise where you have simulated the displacement of the actuator as a function of the applied voltage. All length variables in the geometry relate to the total length of the device. 2 Browse to the model’s Model Library folder. L. 31 . The positions of all components of the geometry are also related to the total length of the actuator. Save your model if you would like to return to it again later. you will run geometric parameter studies in COMSOL Multiphysics to investigate differing arm lengths on the actuator’s operation. comsol/models/MEMS_Module/ Actuators. STUDY 1 1 In the Model Builder.Part III In part III of this exercise. The figure below shows the relation between the different lengths. 4 On the Model Builder. under Global Definitions. DEFINITIONS 1 Click the Open button in the Main toolbar. These parameters are defined in the Parameters node in the model. 5 Inspect the Parameters list. Otherwise. 3 Select the file thermal_actuator_tem_parameterized.mph and click Open. right-click Study 1 and select Parametric Sweep.

4·10−4 to 3·10−4 with increments of 10−5.1e-5. under Data. 3 Right-click Study 1 and select Compute.2 On the Parametric Sweep page: a In the Parameter names field Enter L. 3 Right-click 1D Plot Group 3 (pg3) and select Line Graph. select Solution 2 (dset2) from the Data set list. click the Activate Selection button (the green check box in the section’s upper-right corner).3e-4) to create a set of values from 2. You can refer to these data sets from the Plot Groups in the Results branch. b In the Parameter values field. 2 Right-click Results in the Model Builder and select Plot Group 1D. 4 On the Line Graph page. 32 . REFERRING TO DATA SETS FROM THE RESULTS BRANCH You can use data set tags to refer to a specific data set from a Plot Group.4e-4. To inspect the tags in the Model Builder: 1 Click the down arrow to the right of the Model Builder window name. The Parametric Sweep creates 8 data sets. enter range(2. 5 Under the Selection section.

14 Click the Plot button. 8 Under Y-Axis Data. 11 In the Expression field. click the Go to Default 3D view button to view the geometry. creating line graphs for the remaining data sets you can reproduce the following plot showing the displacement of the arm for different arm lengths at an operation voltage of 10 V. 10 In the X-Axis Data section. 9 From the menu. select Manual from the Legends list.6 On the Graphics window. select Expression from the Parameter list. select Solid Mechanics>Total displacement (disp_tem). By repeating the above steps. 13 Click the first row in the Legends table. Using the procedure described above for other plot types allows you to study the influence of the actuators length on other variables in the model. 33 . click the Replace Expression button (the blue arrow). 12 Under the Legends section. enter L=240e-6[m] in the Legends field. enter x-wb to define the x-axis value as the x coordinate but with the value 0 at the position defined by wb. 7 Select and add edge 52 to the Selection section on the Line Graph page.

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