Carnegie Mellon University Plays Host to MEMS Industry Group with Microsystems’ Lab Tours

Global MEMS companies to see what Carnegie Mellon researchers are doing with ‘miniature machines’

PITTSBURGH, Apr 25, 2012 — MEMS Industry Group (MIG) is bringing the global micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) supply chain to Pittsburgh for its annual meeting, giving leading MEMS suppliers an opportunity to tour Carnegie Mellon’s microsystems labs on May 8.

Having launched commercial successes such as MEMS microphone- maker Akustica, now owned by the Bosch Group, and BodyMedia, creator of MEMS information systems tracking calories and sleep patterns, CMU’s MEMS labs remain research pioneers for the ‘miniature machines’ that allow consumers to experience electronic devices and the environment in new ways.

“Our members are going to see what’s coming down the pipeline at one of the world’s leading engineering institutions,” said Karen Lightman, managing director of MEMS Industry Group and a CMU alumna. “During their tour of CMU’s MEMS labs, MIG members will have the opportunity to interact with faculty and graduate students to experience the cross-pollination between the commercial business sector and academia, where R&D work often generates new products and technologies for the betterment of society. This is a unique experience, and we are honored and proud to have our members be part of it.”

CMU’s Maarten de Boer, an associate professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department, and Gary Fedder, director of the Institute for Complex Engineered Systems (ICES) and a professor of the Robotics Institute, will host MIG members as they tour a cache of labs involving micro-nanofabrication, micro-nanorobotics, micro-fluidics and other technologies.

“These lab tours and demos are designed to help important industry leaders see some of our leading-edge work involving development of ultra-reliable technologies and to explore new device concepts applicable to many industry sectors from electronics to biomedical engineering,” said De Boer.

Each year, MEMS devices are shipped globally in a variety of consumer products, including mobile phones, tablets, laptops, video games and cameras. They are also embedded in biomedical devices and quality of life applications, automotive safety systems and smart industrial systems. By 2015, industry analysts predict that the MEMS industry will grow to nearly $12 billion.(1) In fact, MEMS products are so ubiquitous that their growth now outpaces growth of other segments of the electronics industry.

“We are experiencing steady and sustained market acceptance in our industry,” said Lightman. “With all of our success, I strongly believe that we have barely scratched the surface of what we can achieve with MEMS. It is through the research and development being conducted at academic institutions like CMU that we will continue to tap the potential of MEMS in the future.”

About Carnegie Mellon University: Carnegie Mellon ( http://www.cmu.edu ) is a private, internationally ranked research university with programs in areas ranging from science, technology and business, to public policy, the humanities and the arts. More than 11,000 students in the university’s seven schools and colleges benefit from a small student-to-faculty ratio and an education characterized by its focus on creating and implementing solutions for real problems, interdisciplinary collaboration and innovation. A global university, Carnegie Mellon’s main campus in the United States is in Pittsburgh, Pa. It has campuses in California’s Silicon Valley and Qatar, and programs in Asia, Australia, Europe and Mexico. The university is in the midst of “Inspire Innovation: The Campaign for Carnegie Mellon University,” which aims to build its endowment, support faculty, students and innovative research, and enhance the physical campus with equipment and facility improvements.

About MEMS Industry Group: MEMS Industry Group (MIG) is the trade association advancing MEMS across global markets. Close to 140 companies and industry partners comprise MIG, including Analog Devices, Applied Materials, Belgian Government, Bluechiip, BodyMedia, Flanders Investment & Trade Office, Robert Bosch Gmbh, Freescale Semiconductor, GE, Hillcrest Labs, Honeywell, HP, Intel, InvenSense, N&K Technology, Nokia, Qualcomm, Silicon Resources, STMicroelectronics, Texas Instruments, VTI Technologies, and WiSpry. For more information, visit http://www.memsindustrygroup.org .

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