Just managed to read “MEMS the world as micro devices cath on” on news.com . Just to elighten some of you I did my MS in Mechanical Engineering ( ME ) with specialization – MEMS at UC Berkeley! Thats where the title is ME doing ME in MS on MEMS! ah ha I think I have totally confused you 😀
If you are wondering what MEMS is it stands for Micro Electro Mechanical Systems and more definitions and explanations at Wikipedia. The definition is slightly wrong but yeah it sort of gives you an idea!
Coming back to the news article its says:
A typical MEMS device is indeed an engineering marvel that brings together integrated circuit manufacturing processes with “micromachining” to etch away or build up silicon structures of moving parts. The result is a microscale device that combines computational ability with the sensing and control functions of exquisitely sensitive sensors.
And if the market develops as analysts expect, the total worldwide market for MEMS will grow from $11.5 billion in 2004 to $24 billion in 2009
As impressive as those projections sound, supplying consumer goods manufacturers with new MEMS devices may not be that easy for MEMS companies. The consumer products market is considerably riskier than traditional precision industries; fast time to market and low prices rule supreme. Gaining entry into some high-volume consumer product applications can hinge on pennies in the most price-sensitive applications.
My take on this matter, it was very interesting to learn and understand this technology. Highly interdisciplinary. Uses all branches of Mechnical Engineering. Sometimes you may have to fabricate the device for days and then find out you made the mistake on the first day! But I hope to come back later as I still feel MEMS is still a nice 10 years away! Atleast university research is decently struggling in MEMS – funding is dropping and people wanting to do PhDs increasing due to the downturn in the economy!
Its still more of a science rather than engineering 😀 And I am clear, I love being an engineer. After all what use is a technology is you can’t apply it!