Lifetime estimates and unique failure mechanisms of the Digital Micromirror Device (DMD)
The Digital Micromirror Device/sup TM/ (DMD/sup TM/) has made great strides in terms of both performance and reliability. Each device consists of more than 500,000 individually addressable micromirrors. Digital Light Processing/sup TM/ technology, based on the DMD, has been used in such diverse products as projection displays with film-like projected images and photographic-quality printers. Reliability testing of the DMD has demonstrated greater than 100,000 operating hours and more than 1 trillion mirror cycles. This paper discusses DMD reliability development activities, failure modes investigated (e.g. hinge fatigue, hinge memory, stuck mirrors, and environmental robustness), various acceleration techniques (e.g. temperature and duty cycle), corrective actions implemented, and the resulting evidence that the DMD is exceeding original reliability goals.