What MEMS Research and Development Can Learn from a Production Environment

The intricate interdependency of device design and fabrication process complicates the development of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). Commercial pressure has motivated industry to implement various tools and methods to overcome challenges and facilitate volume production. By now, these are only hesitantly being picked up and implemented in academic research. In this perspective, the applicability of these methods to research-focused MEMS development is investigated. It is found that even in the dynamics of a research endeavor, it is beneficial to adapt and apply tools and methods deduced from volume production. The key step is to change the perspective from fabricating devices to developing, maintaining and advancing the fabrication process. Tools and methods are introduced and discussed, using the development of magnetoelectric MEMS sensors within a collaborative research project as an illustrative example. This perspective provides both guidance to newcomers as well as inspiration to the well-versed experts.


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