by Karen Lightman, Managing Director, MEMS Industry Group
Day one – April 4
For the second year in a row I had the privilege of presenting at Hannover Messe at the IVAM’s “Innovations for Industry” Forum at Micronanotec. Last year I came to the Messe without the company of MIG member companies. In fact, thanks to the Icelandic volcanic disruption of air travel last year during the week of Hannover Messe 2010, I felt like the only one who came from outside Germany! But this year was different in several ways: 1. MIG co-exhibited with members Acuity and XACTIX; 2. MIG hosted a “US MEMS Day” as part of the forum; and lastly, 3. MIG hosted a US MEMS Day (though Bavarian-inspired) party in the IVAM lounge.
Day one of the conference, I listened to the Japan Session in the Forum. After an introduction by IVAM Chairman Frank Bartels and IVAM CEO Uwe Kleinkes , the forum featured a presentation by Panasonic Electric Works Company’s Karl Absmaier, who presented on behalf of his colleague Hiroshi Yamanaka with an “Introduction of Newly Developed Infrared Array Sensor ‘Grid-EYE.’” Following his presentation, Jun Sakai the new Director of Micromachine Center Japan (who has taken over since April 1 as the former Director, Masashiro Katashiro has returned to Olympus) presented “The Landscape of Japanese MEMS Activity” which included some information on the impact of silicon production on MEMS….though he basically reiterated the “wait and see” message we’ve all heard.
Then I had the pleasure of meeting Natsuko Murakami, of TDC Corporation based in Miyagi, Tohoku Japan (though Ms. Murakami lives in Hannover). Ms. Murakami is the sister of my colleague (who I met a few years ago in Japan), Yuko Akabane who works for TDC Corporation as well (and I follow on Twitter!). Ms. Murakami’s presentation was unique as it addressed the human side of the industry and addressed the concern many of us have – namely – how are our friends and colleagues in Sendai and Tohoku? Ms. Murakami also eloquently presented on “Ultra precise Mirror polishing/lapping contributing MicroNano Technology” at TDC.
The rest of the day I spent reconnecting with colleagues from Europe who also were exhibiting and/or visiting Hannover Messe in and around the MIG booth within Hall 6, H 18 in the IVAM “Micronanotech” Pavilion. It was fun to share the booth with the guys from Acuity, founders Jim Knutti and Henry Allen; though I have to admit I didn’t spend a lot of time in the booth (very un-German-like I know but I can’t stand being in one little 9 sq. meter booth for long!). The evening ended with a great FEST with the IVAM folks, hosted for their exhibitors. I had the pleasure of sipping great French wine and conversing with IVAM Chair and head of Bartels Mikrotechnik GmbH, Frank Bartels.
To continue reading about Karen’s trip to Hannover Messe, please read Day 2 of her trip.