Snap-through buckling of initially curved microbeam subject to an electrostatic force.

*(English)*Zbl 1371.74106Summary: The snap-through buckling of an initially curved microbeam subject to an electrostatic force, accounting for fringing field effect, is investigated. The general governing equations of the curved microbeam are developed using Euler–Bernoulli beam theory and used to develop a new criterion for the snap-through buckling of that beam. The size effect of the microbeam is accounted for using the modified couple stress theory, and intermolecular effects, such as van der Waals and Casimir forces, are also included in our snap-through formulations. The snap-through governing equations are solved using Galerkin decomposition of the deflection. The results of our work enable us to carefully characterize the snap-through behaviour of the initially curved microbeam. They further reveal the significant effect of the beam size, and to a much lesser extent, the effect of fringing field and intermolecular forces, upon the snap-through criterion for the curved beam.