MEMS Technology: Overview And Limitation
The world of nanotechnologies is now a kind of frontier – the cutting edge of science that is still being conquered by pioneer scientists. However, the world of microtechnology has long been studied and developed by the world’s brightest minds. Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) are one of the most impressive types of microstructures that humans have created. What do you know about them?
With the introduction of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), it became possible to create a wide range of miniature, dependable, and low-cost devices that are in high demand across almost all industries and the consumer market. Furthermore, as manufacturing technologies advance, the quality and characteristics of MEMS products (1d MEMS mirrors, MEMS laser projectors, MEMS laser scanners) will become increasingly in demand in a wide range of industries, including:
- Defence field;
- Aerospace industry;
- Energy sector;
- Inertial navigation area, etc.
What Is MEMS Technology?
Microelectromechanical systems technology, abbreviated as MEMS technology, is defined as a system that consists of miniature mechanical and electromechanical elements produced using high-precision microtechnology methods.
MEMS devices are typically divided into two types:
- Sensors. These are measuring devices that convert physical effects into electric signals;
- Actuators. These systems are engaged in the reverse task of converting signals to specific actions.
MEMS mechanisms are easy to integrate into complex systems due to their small size. They now serve a variety of purposes:
- In the automotive industry;
- In the defence and security industries;
- In the micro-robotics sector;
- For measuring the distance and height of objects at a far distance;
- Stabilizing platforms or antennas, etc.
The first step in MEMS manufacturing includes designing it using a computer-aided design (CAD) tool. There are currently many tools available that allow you to not only model the MEMS device, but also optimize, test it for functionality, and calculate balance solutions over a long iterative process.
The following step entails meticulous construction and examination of the future MEMS’ details. The workpiece is then delivered to the foundry, where one produces the chip and hones all of its components. The final step involves mechanism assembling and testing.
The Advantages of MEMS Mechanisms
Each technology has its cons and pros. MEMS technology is no exception.
- MEMS mechanisms can operate at extremely high frequencies.
- MEMS-based devices consume very little power.
- These devices are simple to integrate with microelectronics to form an integrated mechatronic system.
- They have improved reproducibility.
- They are more precise.
- They are extremely sensitive.
- They are more cost-effective in terms of manufacturing.
- They are compact.
MEMS technology has a variety of applications, but it has some limitations:
- Although the final cost of a MEMS product is less than that of analogues, the research and development stage of a new MEMS design or device is quite costly;
- High production costs due to low production quantities;
MEMS use brittle polysilicon;
- High-level frames and a high level of knowledge are required to develop, model, and build MEMS devices;
- The assembly procedure is time-consuming;
- The MEMS construction industry is constantly in need of large investments to test quality and performance in the necessary artificially created conditions.
The Future of MEMS Technology
The future of MEMS is thought to be in NEMS (nano-electro-mechanical systems). As the name implies, the era of NEMS technology will usher in more miniature devices than the current era of MEMS.
MEMS has the potential to usher in a second technological revolution by enabling even greater miniaturization of mechanisms. This potential has enough power to generate an industry that will not only produce tiny devices but also improve people’s lives in general. Lowering the cost and improving the performance of microsensors will enable the industry to reach a qualitatively new level of production.