Classic micro electro mechanical structures are usually implemented on mono-crystalline silicon wafers, the silicon is an integral part of resulting mechanical component. While such MEMS can be very powerful they are limited in size by the maximum available size of wafers and the high price per area.
The IGM is investigating processes from large area micro electronics for MEMS applications or to complement micro electronic components with micro mechanic components. The IGM developed a process that allows the parallel implementation of a-Si:H TFTs and micro mechanical elements on simple glass substrates using just four photolithographical steps.
First prototypes of MEMS displays were developed and built which offer a considerably easier production compared to AMLCDs and AMOLED displays while promising improvements in switching speed, contrast and energy consumption.