If the idea is already in the design phase, you may just be looking for a company that will manufacturer (fabricate or fab) your device. The choice of a fab involves different criteria including, of course, cost. In addition to the wafer fabrication packaging is also a major consideration.
A fab process that allows wafer level processing of both the microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) sensor and the associated circuitry would be highly advantageous.
Unlike processes that build MEMS devices before or beside the electronics on the same die, a process that grows MEMS devices above the IC without any having side effects on the electronics underneath has advantages. This results in smaller die sizes, higher performance for many applications, as well as higher levels of integration. One company that achieves MEMS devices above the IC is MEMS VISION. Through the company’s MoSiC™ process that uses silicon carbide instead of silicon, they can deliver higher elastic modulus, higher acoustic velocity, higher temperature resistance, higher ultimate strength, inert surfaces and higher resistance to wear.
With the close integration of MEMS and the IC, they can produce sensors with very high sensitivity, very high speed and minimum power consumption. For those applications that are less demanding, the MEMS devices can be fabricated separately and then coupled with the electronic die in a system-in-package (SiP) solution with multiple dies or even as two distinct chips. The fabrication of the MEMS devices can be done at the company’s fab partner or the process can be performed at a fab that the user chooses. Not all customers will meet the company’s criteria to take advantage of their approach but with all of the potential advantages, it certainly is worth exploring.
Filed Under: Sensor Tips