During microbolometer operation, the detector occasionally views high temperature scenes such as the sun or
flames at very close distance. The detector temperature can then increase to a level so high that the sensing material
experiences an annealing effect. Accordingly, the microbolometer is required to stand high temperatures that can cause
In this paper, a bimorph leg integrated microbolometer structure is proposed. The bimorph leg is an extra leg that
is separated from the signal transfer legs. It is bent downward and snaps onto the substrate when the microbolometer's
temperature reaches a critical temperature. The temperature of the micro-bolometer is then decreased as heat is
transferred to the substrate.
By snapping the bimorph leg down onto the substrate, the microbolometer's thermal conductance is temporarily
increased roughly three-fold higher than that of the normal state and thermal damage to the bolometer material can be
effectively prevented. The increase of thermal conductance can be controlled by changing the size of the bimorph leg.