CEA Leti and Thales form joint microwave microsystems lab

September 9, 2004 – Thales and the French atomic energy commission CEA have formed a new joint laboratory in Grenoble, France, to work on RF MEMS to design and develop high-power microwave microswitches and ICs based on them.

RF MEMS (radio frequency micro-electro mechnical systems) perform electro-mechanical functions and rely on microelectronics engineering methods to miniaturize certain critical microwave components while improving their performance.

The new laboratory brings together a CEA Leti team and a team from the Thales research centre at Orsay, France, which will join CEA Leti by the end of this year. It will be based in Grenoble at CEA Leti’s Heterogeneous Silicon Integration department and will have access to its dedicated microsystems development platform.

The laboratory aims to design and develop high-power microwave microswitches and integrated circuits based on these microswitches. The microsystems developed in will be used by Thales in applications including future radar and radio systems for defence, security and aerospace markets, and by other users in other fields.

The lab will operate initially for a four-year period with a team of four permanent staff and two doctoral students. Funding support is provided through national and European contracts. The laboratory will enable CEA Leti and Thales to develop new components based on identified needs, particularly for Thales’ Aerospace Division.


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