Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) are miniaturized devices that when coupled with IC (integrated circuit) components have the ability to interact with the environment or other on-chip components, allowing creation of sensor, actuator, and/or transducer systems thereby. Although originally the term referred to only miniaturizedmechanical devices,MEMS is now a generic expression for any miniaturized device that has interactive capabilities. Therefore, optoelectronic and micro- fluidic miniaturized systems, including lab-on-chip, are also currently described as MEMS.

MEMS technology emerged in early 1990s by leveraging many of the materials and processes from the IC industry, and thus it was mainly based on the silicon technology.As the field has grown over the years, concepts of more complex devices have been proposed and demonstrated, many based on new, functional materials with new fabrication processes, which allow creation of systems consuming less power, with faster and more reliable response, and capable of incorporating more complex functions.


Piezoelectric Actuator Piezoelectric Layer Proof Mass Voice Coil Motor Piezoelectric Response 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nazanin Bassiri-Gharb
    • 1
  1. 1.GeorgeW. Woodruff School of Mechanical EngineeringGeorgia Institute of TechnologyAtlantaUSA

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