Owing to the technology growth, especially in Microsystems technology and Nanotechnology, new products will provide new ways to sense variables that are crucial for product improvement and system reliability. A big concern of the scientific community is the measurement of low level flow measurements, especially for the biomedical and/or systems on a chip approaches.Design/methodology/approach – A new flow meter concept design consists of a surface micromachined sensor having an optical high reflective mirror made of gold, which is attached to unique cantilever designs that bend due to the drag force of mass flow. The bending of the cantilevers produces the mirror to approach/depart from an optical fiber end‐tip. The reflective light to fiber is modulated using a Fabry‐Perot interferometry technique to determine the mirror separation to the fiber, which corresponds to the mass flow.Findings – The new concept design shows a big potential approach to measure low flow measurements for air, gas and liquids of low viscosity. The results of this concept, through finite element analysis, show that the material used to build the sensor, makes them excellent candidates for fabrication. The stresses of the materials and allowable (readable) bending are among the tolerances of such materials/construction‐design. The sensor is not affected by electromagnetic interference and does not require electrical currents to sense, i.e. it is perfectly suited for biomedical and low mass‐flow sensing such as lab‐on‐chip applications.Originality/value – Among all approaches to sense low flow measurements, most of them need either “big” turbine approaches (dimensions over 1 cm diameter), or the need of an electrical approach needed in the end measurement sensor. This work proposes a non‐electrical approach.
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