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

Integration IP Helps IP Integration


You might not know much about the MIPI Alliance if you aren't designing mobile phones, but you will soon. Other application areas are taking interest in what this group has accomplished. The alliance was founded in 2003 to create standards for hardware and software interfaces in mobile devices. Successful examples include a camera serial interface (CSI) and a display serial interface (DSI), ... » read more

Making Drones Secure


Critics have accused drones of creating multiple dangers, including invading privacy, colliding with other aircraft, threatening personal safety and even frightening livestock. Yet the biggest drone threat of all may turn out to be attacks made on the vehicles themselves. Drones, also known as UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) and UASs (unmanned aerial systems), need a variety of internal ... » read more

Making Phones Better


Beneath a smartphone's slick packaging is some interesting, highly sophisticated technology that makes the user experience what it is today. Much of that experience relies on satisfying our ever growing desire for more data capacity for video, social media and the like. Providing that capacity relies on robust filtering to receive just your data stream amongst many nearby other streams. But tha... » read more

Stacked Die Changes


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss advanced packaging with David Pan, associate professor in the department of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Texas; Max Min, senior technical manager at Samsung; John Hunt, senior director of engineering at ASE; and Sitaram Arkalgud, vice president of 3D portfolio and technologies at Invensas. What follows are excerpts of tha... » read more

Virtual Fabrication For MEMS Process Development


MEMS fabrication and design are closely coupled, such that design changes could significantly alter the process flow and vice versa. For instance, setting device parameters such as drive capacitance, deflection distance, or proof mass size directly affects the choice of film thickness, etch rate, sidewall profile and so forth. Typically, this requires multiple iterations of the MEMS design/proc... » read more

Atomic Layer Etch Heats Up


The atomic layer etch (ALE) market is starting to heat up as chipmakers push to 10nm and beyond. ALE is a promising next-generation etch technology that has been in R&D for the last several years, but until now there has been little or no need to use it. Unlike conventional etch tools, which remove materials on a continuous basis, ALE promises to selectively and precisely remove targete... » read more

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