This issue of Microelectronics TOE covers recent developments in smart fabrics, AFM, fast communication system, GaN crystals, and wearables. Innovations profiled include development of stretchable smart fabric using a standard inkjet printer by the Michigan State University, development of atomic force microscope on chip by the University of Texas at Dallas, development of a fast and cost-effective communication system using a magnet by the Australian National University, suitability test of silicon-on-insulator (SOI) as a substrate for GaN crystals by the Aalto University, and activity tracking wearable in the form of a ring by Motiv Inc.
The Microelectronics TechVision Opportunity Engine (TOE) captures global electronics-related innovations and developments on a weekly basis. Developments are centred on electronics attributed by low power and cost, smaller size, better viewing, display and interface facilities, wireless connectivity, higher memory capacity, flexibility and wearables. Research focus themes include small footprint lightweight devices (CNTs, graphene), smart monitoring and control (touch and haptics), energy efficiency (LEDs, OLEDs, power and thermal management, energy harvesting), and high speed and improved conductivity devices (SiC, GaN, GaAs).
Miniaturization, a move toward lower power consumption, and the need for enhanced features are driving innovations in the electronics sector. Technology focus areas include semiconductor manufacturing and design, flexible electronics, 3D integration/IC, MEMS and NEMS, solid state lighting, advanced displays, nanoelectronics, wearable electronics, brain computer interface, advanced displays, near field communication, and next generation data storage or memory.
Keywords: Microelectronics, GaN, gallium nitride, silicon-on-insulator, SOI, wearables, smart fabrics, stretchable electronics, communication system, magnet