As businesses and consumers demand devices and products with greater performance and capabilities, miniaturization continues to be the enabling factor. Here are just some of the ways it can move humankind forward.
For surgeons, minimizing the amount of collateral tissue damage required to achieve the optimum outcome is a top priority. Miniaturizing medical devices — while adding or preserving functionality — is an essential part of realizing that goal.
The modern cardiac pacemaker is a prime example. From the first implantable model in the late 1950s to today’s pill-sized marvels, these life-saving, autonomous devices have experienced a 93% reduction in size and can now be implanted using a catheter instead of invasive surgery.
Microfabrica’s submillimeter process extends the boundaries of what’s possible so companies can build the next generation of medical devices and components. It gives designers the freedom to create intricate structures with multiple discrete parts and use advanced, biocompatible materials with a wide range of desirable properties. Furthermore, because our process manufactures these complex mechanisms fully assembled and in commercial quantities, our customers can move patient care forward faster than ever and extend their competitive advantages.
The estimated cost to transport one pound (0.45 kg) of cargo into low Earth orbit is $3,000. That’s why aerospace designers never stop searching for ways to make things lighter and smaller. Every gram they can save and every decimal place of drag coefficient (Cd) they can reduce translates directly into better performance.
Using Microfabrica’s submillimeter process, aerospace engineers are creating complex mechanisms several hundred times smaller than their predecessors. This creates new possibilities for improving performance and reliability while still reducing size and weight. And because these mechanisms are manufactured in a finished state — including discrete, moving parts — engineers don’t have to worry about assembly challenges and are free to be even more innovative.
Moore’s Law applies to the increasing number of transistors on an integrated circuit. It’s pushed semiconductor fabrication processes down to an incredible 10 nanometers (nm).
But as difficult as it is to fathom creating silicon-based circuits with lines just 10 billionths of a meter wide, testing and cooling those circuits are proving to be equally challenging tasks. And it’s putting enormous pressure on the people who design those systems.
Microfabrica’s submillimeter processes can combine multiple metals from our materials palette to obtain the thermal, electrical and mechanical properties engineers need to uphold Moore’s Law. To test ever-shrinking devices, engineers have used our process to create micro-electrical contacts that withstand the thermal and mechanical stresses of extreme test environments. And to keep densely packed circuits cool and running at peak performance, our process can be used to build complex, micro-thermal management solutions that reduce heat at its source — even when that source is smaller than the tip of a pencil eraser.
With a minimum feature size of 10µm, the ability to fabricate fully assembled, complex devices and micro-composites with multiple metals, our processes open up new creative possibilities. We can collaborate with your engineers to ensure that your designs take full advantage of its unique benefits or simply turn your CAD files into finished, high-precision products.CONTACT US