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Posted: Oct 15, 2012
Boosting European competitiveness in micro- and nanotechnology devices
(Nanowerk News) An EU-funded project to improve and strengthen Europe’s competitiveness in micro and nano devices has resulted in the successful development of a customer-oriented engineering methodology that will ultimately benefit a wide range of European industries that depend on these technologies.
Micro and nano devices are used by many industries in the manufacture of their products, including the automotive, consumer products, and medical applications sectors. Boosting competitiveness in micro and nano devices, improving quality and providing new functions will therefore add value right along the European manufacturing chain.
The project – CORONA – brought together designers, manufacturers, tool providers, research institutes and end-users to tackle the technological challenges faced by the industry. Their overall goal was to reduce development times, crucial for competitiveness in this field since success relies very much on fast time-to-market.
It also sought to foster cooperation between companies, since much of European micro and nano device manufacturing is carried out by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and the use of knowledge-based engineering methods are therefore key to improving Europe’s leading position in the market for these devices.
CORONA, to which the EU contributed EUR 3 million of the total EUR 4.4 million project costs, has resulted in the development of software tools for customer-oriented product engineering. Multiple demonstrations have already been rolled out in a wide range of business cases and parts of the software incorporated into commercially available suites.
Led by European micro-technology association IVAM, the project brought together 11 organisations, including micro-system makers Elmos and X-Fab, fabless micro/nano firm Theon, software groups Coventor and Process Relations, and the Universities of Cambridge (UK), Siegen (DE), and ITE in Warsaw (PL).