Designer’s choice


What’s new in small-tech components, including devices and materials

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Nextreme Thermal Solutions says it developed its new Ultra-High Packing Fraction (UPF) OptoCooler in response to market demand for microscale cooling solutions that improve the performance of electronics without sacrificing efficiency. The module addresses the latest cooling and temperature control requirements for optoelectronics, electronics, medical, military, and aerospace applications, and it’s been optimized for laser diode, LED, and advanced sensor products.

With Nextreme’s thin-film thermal bump technology at its core, the OptoCooler can be integrated directly into electronic and optoelectronic packaging to deliver more than 45°C of cooling for a wide variety of thermal management applications.

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Microvision has signed a development agreement with a Tier-1 European supplier of automotive and industrial technologies to deliver prototype samples of its PicoP technology for evaluation in a variety of automotive display applications, including heads-up displays. Microvision has pioneered the development of ultra-miniature laser projection based on proprietary MEMS scanning micromirror technology. The solution promises important advantages over flat panel technologies: resolution, contrast, color, smaller packaging, and less power consumption.

During the Consumer Electronics Show in January, Microvision unveiled an advanced prototype of the first handheld, battery-powered, “plug-and-play” application of this technology. The PDA-sized unit connects directly to mobile devices to project large, high-resolution images and video onto any surface. According to Microvision, the images are “always in focus.” The production version of the device is expected to offer approximately 2.5 hours of continuous battery life.

Nanophase’s new line of nanoengineered dispersions is optimized for water-based formulations. The company says its nanoengineered dispersions enable an applied coating to resist scratching and marring and retain high gloss by up to 80% and produce improvements in scratch resistance by 300% to 400% compared to other commercially available water-based coatings.

“Nanophase has built commercial capabilities to manufacture nanocrystalline metal oxides, surface engineer nanoparticles, and disperse the nanoparticles into application-specific fluids,” says Dr. Richard Brotzman, Nanophase’s CTO. “We believe our capability to surface engineer nanoparticles and provide stable dispersions is novel in the field. We are now taking the next step and applying our application expertise to optimize nanoparticle dispersions for specific customer formulations.”

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STMicroelectronics’ latest extension of its ultra-compact low-g linear accelero-meter line is a three-axis analog-output sensor. The LIS344AL estimates acceleration values at a very low noise level with minimal power consumption, which is critical in battery-operated portable systems. Designed for space-constrained portable devices, LIS344AL is a cost-sensitive MEMS solution, the company says. It is housed in an inexpensive 4 x 4 x 1.5mm plastic package to fit in a variety of space-constrained applications, and it provides shock survivability up to 10,000g.