MEMS: A Tale Of Two Tough Markets


The MEMS market is growing rapidly, profits not so much. In most market segments, this would be a signal that more automation and standardization are required. But in the microelectromechanical systems world, fixes aren't so simple. And even where something can be automated, that automation doesn't work all the time. In fact, while MEMS devices are extremely difficult to design, build and ma... » read more

New Techniques To Analyze And Reduce Etch Variation


Time division multiplex (TDM) plasma etch processes (commonly referred to as Deep Reactive ION Etching [“DRIE”]) use alternating deposition and etch steps cyclically to produce high aspect ratio structures on a silicon substrate. These etch processes have been widely applied in the manufacturing of silicon MEMS devices, and more recently in creating through silicon vias in 3D silicon struct... » read more

What’s Up MEMS?


Strong segment growth. A whole slew of new devices on the horizon. A healthy pipeline of enabling critical problems to be solved. Has somebody been peeking at my Christmas list? Possibly yes, and thankfully so, because 2016 has been that kind of year in MEMS. Taking a look at the numbers from Yole Developpement, they expect 2016 MEMS device segment revenue to be around $13B, with an estimate... » read more

China Unveils Memory Plans


Backed by billions of dollars in government funding, China in 2014 launched a major initiative to advance its domestic semiconductor, IC-packaging and other electronic sectors. So far, though, the results are mixed. China is making progress in IC-packaging, but the nation’s efforts to advance its domestic logic and memory sectors are still a work in progress. In fact, China has yet to achi... » read more

The Week In Review: IoT


Tools Google this week updated its Internet of Things platform, releasing a Developer Preview for Android Things, enabling application developers to create IoT devices running on the mobile Android operating system. “We incorporated the feedback from Project Brillo to include familiar tools such as Android Studio, the Android Software Development Kit (SDK), Google Play Services, and Google C... » read more

How High-Level Synthesis Was Used to Develop An Image-Processing IP Design From C++ Source Code


Imagine working long and hard on a design, only to learn that you need to add new (and more complex) functionality a few months before your targeted tapeout. How can you deliver the performance and capabilities expected in the same timeframe? For Bosch, high-level synthesis (HLS) provided the solution. In this paper, we will discuss how HLS technology enabled the team to meet an aggressive sche... » read more

Optimizing Multiple IoT Layers


As the number of connected devices rises, so do questions about how to optimize them for target markets, how to ensure they play nicely together, and how to bring them to market quickly and inexpensively. [getkc id="76" kc_name="IoT"] is broad term that encompasses a lot of disparate pieces for devices, systems, and connected systems. At the highest levels are hardware and software, but with... » read more

Printed Cars, Smart Stints, Personal Breathalyzers


The MEMS and sensor market continues to be a hotbed for innovation, new opportunities and, as with most new frontiers, there are also some disparate views on market dynamics and strategies. All this was evident at the 2016 MSIG Executive Congress last week in Scottsdale, Arizona. First, I’ll cover the pioneering and fun subjects. In addition to the Technology Showcase demos and member pres... » read more

Architecting For Energy


Most of the time, electrical design engineers create their designs by putting in the functions first, then going back later to figure out what they can afford to shut down. But with energy harvesting, this is flipped, and the systems must be built to normally be ‘off,’ and with a clear understanding of the minimum power requirements. Also, most of the time, energy harvesting systems are ... » read more

What’s Next For IoT Security?


By Ed Sperling & Jeff Dorsch With security, the little things can cause as much of a problem as the big things. As shown in the recent distributed denial of service attack (DDoS) on Dyn, which created waves of attacks using Mirai malware, connected devices of all sizes can be amassed into an army of bots that can bring even giants like Amazon and Netflix to a dead stop. This attack was ... » read more

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