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1 July 2008


Micromem ships first production-level GaAs Hall sensor for client testing

Micromem Technologies Inc of Toronto, Canada has announced the first production-level shipments of its patented magnetic sensor (based on the Hall effect). As an integral component of the firm’s magnetic random-access memory (MRAM) product line, the sensors have been produced in a traditional package configuration and are being distributed to key clients for field evaluation.

Micromem recently completed a four-way evaluation using competitive Hall sensors. The firm claims that its device produced superior results in sensitivity, lower power requirements, and consistent and linear performance of Hall voltage versus magnetic flux density in the targeted temperature range.

Micromem is focused on the design of arrays of micron-sized magnetic sensors on a single chip that will be used to detect very small magnetic fields with very high spatial resolution. Its patented sensor technology includes a memory component that allows for frequency-tuned pattern recognition of very small magnetic fields. In addition, it can detect changes in magnetic fields associated with magnetic biosensors, non-destructive test, inspection and evaluation, and for other medical and homeland security applications.

In addition, under an agreement with Micromem Applied Sensor Technologies Inc, defense and aerospace contractor BAE Systems will co-produce nano-sensor technology that will leverage both firms’ expertise, for use in military, commercial, and homeland security applications.

As a foundry and business development partner with Micromem Applied Sensor Technologies, BAE Systems’ Microelectronics Center in Nashua, NH will further develop Micromem’s designs and manufacturability for MRAM products at its 6-inch GaAs fab. The goal is to bring the designs to maturity and begin production of GaAs-based nano-sensors that offer features such as very high-speed and low-power capability, radiation-hardness, and overall robustness.

“Foundry facilities are very expensive, and development work on new products is highly capital-intensive,” says BAE’s foundry director Gino Manzo. “This arrangement will advance technology and design maturity for products developed by Micromem by giving both companies the means to produce devices for a wide range of commercial and military uses.”

Micromem Applied Sensor Technologies’ patented MRAM-based submicron nano-sensor can also be designed for use in highly accurate magnetometers (instruments used to measure the strength and/or direction of magnetic fields) and for threat-detection solutions for defense and homeland security.

See related items:

Micromem makes first fully functioning MRAM cells

Micromem's Hall cross sensor meets expectations; on schedule for functioning MRAM by year end

Micromem’s GaAs MRAM device processed at GCS

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