Sensor Roundup: Cisco and 6lowPan, BSI cmos markets, MEMs growth

xbee sensor mems Sensors and actuators from CMOS to MEMS continue to get the industrial attention they deserve, as the week ends on a round of buyups, production rampups, and forecastups. Now they just need to work on the network bandwith problems… (maybe using some hints from Clifford Nass’s (Stanfords CHIMe Lab) awesome new book “The Man Who Lied to His Laptop: What Machines Teach Us About Human Relationships” to get it done. [amz Book, Kindle]. FYI, also a great resource for anyone working on arduino/fritzing style DIY sensor interactions).

Anyhow, in sensors this week:

  • Cisco to buy ArchRock

Cisco bought up ArchRock, which bodes well for further development of ip mesh networks, and movement on RFC 4944 (IETF 6LoWPAN) specs for low-power radio communication over wireless IPv6 [6lowpanrfc 4944] (IEEE 802.15.4). It looks like they’ll be folded into Cisco Smart Grid, which is on par with most early institutional contracts for the Internet of Things- IP and web-enabled sensors and devices are currently weighted to large energy and health industries.

  • Sony increases CMOS Production

Sony is spending ~$475m to raise their CMOS image sensor production (Exmor and Exmor R) in Japan to bring their Kumamoto and Kyushu plants up to 25000 wafers/mo… BackSide Illumination (BSI) sensors of the Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor ilk look to be increasingly dominating the CCD’s (Charge Coupled Device). [reuters]

  • MEMS sensor/actuator growth on the rise

An IC Insights industry report forecasts a steep growth in MEMS based sensor markets. The graph of their MEMs growth forecast is below. One has to wonder what percentage is predicated on iPad and iPhone / tablet sales vs bio-MEMS and other, more industrial applications…

full IC Insights Industry Report

Also, interestingly, the report link above also shows the power FET market for under and over 200v FETs… seems like just running all the good SPICE simulations for a power FET market that size would consume so much energy that ciscos smart grid monitors grid energy use would have to go to zero or risk breaking some climate change threshold.

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