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Proceedings Paper

Infrastructure considerations for the emerging MEMS markets
Author(s): Steven T. Walsh; Walid El Nadi; Robert Boylan; Divjot S. Narang; Robert O'Neil Warrington; Alan Jung
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Paper Abstract

Whether they are called Micro-Electro-Mechanical-Systems (MEMS)', micromechanical systems, micro machines or MicroSystems Technology (MST), these manufacturing based technologies are enabling the development and production of many exciting new products. MEMS based.manufacturing technologies are the fertile ground for discontinuous innovations which are revitalizing existing industries and creating new markets. The total market for products produced through the use ofMEMS technologies is currently less than $1 billion. Projections ofthe MEMS based marketplace vary from $8 billion 2 to $14 billion3 by the year 2000, as seen by industry analysts. Initial results from our Delphi industrial forecast suggest that the market will be in the $3 to $54 billion range by the turn ofthe century. Whether the market will be $4 or $14 billion by the end of the decade is debatable, but what is not debatable is that the marketplace is exploding, both in terms of revenue and product applications. This explosive growth will severely tax an infrastructure which barely supports the current level of activity. The emerging MEMS based product marketplace is based on a series oftechnological and business innovations. These types ofinnovations have been called radical (Walsh and Lynn 1991), architectural or revolutionary (Abernathy and Clark 1985)6and now more commonly discontinuous (Morone 1993). The role of infrastructure in the development of these emerging MEMS markets is critical. In order to understand the demands placed on the infrastructure by an emerging discontinuous innovation, it is essential to understand the discontinuous innovation process as well as the difference between continuous and discontinuous innovation. In particular, we focus on how discontinuous innovation has influenced the existing technological infrastructure and how the slowly changing infrastructure influences the established state of technology. This feed-back feed-forward loop dramatically influences the growth of new markets and the time required for new technologies and novel products to have an impact on markets. In our study we introduce a model of infrastructure development. This simple three stage model is tailored to the MEMS market and was developed by combining historical information with current research on the infrastructure for MEMS based markets.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 September 1995
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 2639, Micromachining and Microfabrication Process Technology, (19 September 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.221295
Show Author Affiliations
Steven T. Walsh, SEMI and New Jersey Institute of Technology (United States)
Walid El Nadi, SEMI and New Jersey Institute of Technology (United States)
Robert Boylan, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (United States)
Divjot S. Narang, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (United States)
Robert O'Neil Warrington, Louisiana Tech Univ. (United States)
Alan Jung, SEMI (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2639:
Micromachining and Microfabrication Process Technology
Karen W. Markus, Editor(s)

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