Saturday, October 18, 2008

Fujitsu Siemens chooses STMicro sensors for free fall detection

Fujitsu Siemens will use STMicroelectronics' free-fall detection solution consisting of a 3-axis motion sensor and software to protect it's new Esprimo Mobile family of professional notebooks.
When the sensor detects a possible free-fall event of the notebook, it automatically prompts the system to move the magnetic read/write head of the hard0disk drive to a safe position before hitting the ground thereby maintaining data integrity.

Shortnews: New MEMS reports from Yole Developpement

France based Yole Developpement has recently released the following new MEMS market reports:
  • MEMS Switch and Varicap Market 2008
  • MEMS for Cell Phones 2008
  • MIS 08 Status of the MEMS industry
  • IMU MArket 2007-2012
  • WMEM 08- World MEMS Equipment & Materials Market

Analog Devices presents high peformance MEMS microphone for Consomer Electronics

Analog Devices has presented a new MEMS microphone based on their iMEMS process which was previously mostly used for accelerometers.
The new microphone (ADMP412 PDM) has digital output, extremely good signal-to-noise 61-dB A-weighted, is capable of high-fidelity audio-video playback, conference calling, voice recognition, VoIP compliant and is aimed specifically at the consumer product market.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

ShortNews: ESI buys Zygo for $173.5M

California based Electro Scientific Industries Inc. (ESI), selling laser marking systems, has acquired Zygo Corp., a supplier of high-precision metrology solutions for $173.5 in stock.

[Details @EETimes]

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Asthma patient monitoring

California based BioMEMS company Aspieron markets a MEMS-based sensor system measuring nitric oxide in breath aimed at asthma patients.
The system called "Insight™ eNO System" consists of a sol-gel deposited porous glass matrix permeable to nitric oxide which contains specific protein molecules reacting with nitric oxide. This porous matrix allows for a certain portion of light to pass through it and the absorption rate being propotional to the concentration of nitric oxide in the matrix.
The reported measurement sensitivity for these sensors is in the area of several parts per billion (ppb) and very specific to nitric oxide due to the proteins used.

MEMS to treat congestive heart failure

The california based BioMEMS start-up Proteus Biomedical has recently raised $30 million to further develop their MEMS-based treatment to congestive heart failure.
Sadly their website does not give any information about how exactly this system works.
But another pretty cool product they presented earlier this year is a digestible pill which communicates with a patch outside the body allowing for correlation of the condition of the patient and the medication. So this new congestive heart faluire treatment system is quite likely based on a very similar type of technology.

[Proteus Biomedical]

Monday, October 13, 2008

Pocket-sized MEMS SVGA projector by Nippon Signal

Nippon signals has recently presented it's newest generation of hand-held projectors.

They are quite small (9 x 5.5 x 2 cm) but still a bit larger than the usually quotes "pack of cigarettes". The interesting part about the device is that it uses semiconductor lasers which are then processed by a MEMS scanner to produce SVGA (800x600) images in RGB colour.

The actual MEMS scanners have a total dimension of 1x1x0.5 cm each.

[Nippon Signals]

IMU developed by students at MIT

It seems that one of the first proper Inertial Measurement Units (IMU) has been developed by two MIT students to allow for dead-reckoning in case when a GPS signal is not available.
By using a combination of an accelerometer, gyroscope and magnetometer apparently they can achieve a positional accuracy of 1m with and 3m without GPS signal present.
We are quite likely to see more and more applications of this kind of application in the near future for such applications as: consumer electronics, automotive, aerospace etc.

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