Tuesday, April 08, 2008
Microelectromechanical system (MEMS) oscillators are replacing quartz crystals at a 120 percent annual growth rate, according to an industry forecast, or four times the growth rate forecast elsewhere. The bullish MEMS forecast from Wicht Technologie Consulting (WTC, Munich, Germany), outpaced an earlier survey of MEMS foundries by Yole Development (Lyon, France), which predicted 30 percent annual growth. According to WTC, the current $2.5 million market for MEMS oscillators will grow to $140 million by 2012, fueled by microminiaturization in consumer and automotive electronics as well as by system-on-chip MEMS with multiple oscillators on a single CMOS chip. Beyond 2012, MEMS oscillators could also begin penetrating the $1 billion market for mobile handset timing chips, according to WTC. Already shipped are about 3 million MEMS oscillators in 2007 from Discera Inc. (San Jose, Calif.) and SiTime Corp. (Sunnyvale, Calif.). Silicon Clocks Inc. (Fremont, Calif.) is readying its first shipments of silicon-germanium based MEMS oscillators, which the company plans to offer as SoC timing circuits.
Posted by R. Colin Johnson at 7:12 AM