Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS) are in the phase of transition from research to industry. This paper intends to describe this process from the point of view of a European R&D institution. The R&D activities at HSG-IMIT in Germany are described. The last chapter outlines the cooperation between the R&D institution and industry, in particular with local German small and medium sized enterprises.
In 1994, the “Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS)”, the main French research association having 25,300 staff members and the Institute of Industrial Science of The University of Tokyo decided to settle a joint research project on Micromechatronics. Micro miniature machines and motion systems are investigated in a joint laboratory, the Laboratory for Integrated MicroMechatronic Systems (LIMMS) at IIS. Since 1994, 29 French researchers are involved in the project and stay in LIMMS for one to three years conducting scientist research with IIS faculty members and research staff.