ISES ME 2023 Speaker
Dr. Siavash Pourkamali
Siavash Pourkamali is the founder and CEO of Silicon DynamiX, Inc., a US-based start-up developing chip-scale micromechanical actuators to address the needs of the state-of-the-art highly integrated optical modules including compact camera modules. He is also a professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Texas at Dallas. He received the BS degree in electrical engineering from Sharif University of Technology, Tehran, Iran, in 2001, and the MS and the PhD degrees in electrical engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, in 2004 and 2006, respectively. He has co-authored over 150 publications in international journals and conferences in the area of micro-electromechanical systems and micromachining.
The Camera Module Industry and the Opportunity for MEMS and Micro-Manufacturing
The compact camera module (CCM) industry has a 35+ billion-dollar market size with close to 10% annual growth rate. Despite significant advances in the CCM for smartphones and digital cameras, including CMOS Image Sensor and lens manufacturing technologies, the opto-mechanics in the CCM is still based on the 150 year old voice coil motor (VCM) technology. The undesirable form-factor, high power consumption, low speed, low accuracy, and magnetic susceptibility of the VCM present bottlenecks for further advancement of the CCM. This presents an opportunity for the silicon-based MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems) and micromanufacturing technologies to offer a more efficient, compact, and higher performing alternative solution with a multi-billion-dollar potential market.
In this talk a brief overview of the state of the CCM industry is presented followed by a discussion of the electromechanical aspects of the inner workings of a camera module. Emerging new technologies and companies developing such are introduced and challenges and opportunities for manufacturing such new MEMS products are discussed.
Silicon DynamiX is a US-based start-up company developing silicon chip-scale micromachined actuators to address the mechanical actuation needs in the state-of-the-art highly integrated compact camera modules (CCM). Compact camera modules have become an integral component of smartphones and tablets, while supporting emerging devices and applications such as AR/VR headsets, self-driving cars, drones, etc. Millimeter-scale electromechanical actuators are utilized in advanced CCMs for Auto-Focusing (AF) and shake cancellation via Optical Image Stabilization (OIS). Currently the actuation need in CCMs is met by Voice Coil Motors, electromagnetic actuators comprised of current carrying windings interacting with permanent magnets. Several micro-assembled components in such actuators make them relatively heavy (slow), costly, bulky, power hungry and prone to failure. Silicon DynamiX chip-scale actuators can replace several components present in current CCM assemblies integrating both auto-focusing and OIS functionalities in a single batch fabricated silicon chip.