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Microsystems and microelectronics

An energy-efficient wakeup sensor

Microsystems and microelectronics

The MEMS component of Sandia’s ultra-low power unattended vibration sensor.

Through the DARPA N-ZERO program, Sandia demonstrated a wakeup sensor that consumes less power than a nightlight (6 nanowatts), beating the project goal by 40 percent. MESA-fabricated devices integrate MEMS and low-power CMOS into a sensor that draws almost no power until it detects an acoustic and/or vibration signature of interest. These technical break-throughs aim to substantially extend the useful life of military sensors.