MEMS sensor delivers ten degrees of freedom

MEMS sensor delivers ten degrees of freedom

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A complete hardware solution for advanced sensing applications with 10 degrees of freedom (DoF) has been announced by STMicroelectronics. A set of three thin, high performance MEMS sensors are said to provide accurate and comprehensive information on linear, angular and magnetic motion together with altitude readings, enabling enhanced navigation and smarter user interfaces in portable devices.
By eeNews Europe


An emerging new class of mobile consumer applications, such as location-based services and pedestrian dead-reckoning for indoor and multi-floor navigation, require rather complex sensing capabilities.

ST claims that by using just three MEMS sensors – a geo-magnetic module, a gyroscope, and a pressure sensor – a consumer device can have a complete indication of its linear acceleration, angular velocity, earth gravity, heading and altitude.

With this information, mobile users will be able to identify their direction and precise location in all three dimensions everywhere they go, including in places with no or low GPS signal, such as inside buildings in urban canyons or in mountainous and forested terrain.

ST has also recently introduced its advanced filtering and predictive software engine, iNEMO, which integrates the outputs from 3-axis accelerometers, gyroscopes and magnetic sensors. The iNEMO engine is said to deliver dramatically more accurate and reliable sensor performance – the kind of performance now in demand by makers of next-generation smart consumer devices for enhanced motion-based applications.    

Also, ST’s soon-to-be-announced silicon pressure sensor is said to use an innovative technology to provide extremely high resolution measurements of pressure – and therefore also of altitude  – in an ultra-compact and thin 3 x 3 x 1mm package. The device has an operating pressure range of 260 – 1260 millibars, corresponding to the atmospheric pressures between -700 and +10000 m relative to sea level, and can detect height variations as small as 0.3 m.

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