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Partners push for custom MEMS in navigation systems

Posted: 17 Dec 2009     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:navigation systems  MEMS  Tronics Thales partnership 

Tronics Microsystems SA and Thales have signed a supply agreement in the field of navigation systems.

Under the agreement, Tronics will produce high-performance, vacuum-packaged inertial MEMS-sensing elements based on two design concepts that Thales invented, designed and patented to meet navigation requirements of aircraft, satellites and other platforms. Both designs, one for accelerometers and one for gyroscopes, require advanced MEMS and vacuum-packaging technologies, areas in which Tronics excels.

This announcement follows Thales' presentation at the Symposium Gyro Technology in Karlsruhe, Germany, in September. Thales showed that the measurement provided by the gyro (angular speed expressed in °/h) features intrinsic bias, that is, a "constant" error compared with the exact value. One of the main challenges in MEMS technology is maintaining this error as stable as possible over time. During the symposium, Thales announced that it had achieved a stability better than 8°/h in the full temperature range with parts produced by Tronics.

"The MEMS technology is a major breakthrough that will introduce a navigation offer to many new civil and military markets by drastically reducing volume, weight, power consumption, and costs, and increasing reliability," said Norbert Herail, director of navigation systems activities at Thales.

"We are delighted to count Thales as part of our strategic customer base for high-performance inertial transducers," said Peter Pfluger, Tronics CEO. "We are now running a good panel of inertial MEMS projects, which range from single- to multiple-axis devices and from extremely small low-cost MEMS devices to high-performance components."





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