Epson to Launch Sales of Sensing Platforms

New series will simplify development of consumer applications incorporating motion sensing & control

Press Release

E and M Series






August 3, 2011

TOKYO, Japan, August 3, 2011 Seiko Epson Corporation ("Epson", TSE: 6724) today announced the commercial development of two new series of sensing platforms, based on Epson's QMEMS and semiconductor technologies. The new Epson evaluation tools are designed to help developers more easily develop and evaluate sensor applications. The E Series consists of two multifunction sensor evaluation units, while sensing platforms in the M Series are compact, specialized evaluation modules. The new sensing platforms will be available starting August 5, 2011.

"Epson is delighted to announce these new sensing platform series," said Ryuhei Miyagawa, Deputy Chief Operating Officer of Epson's Microdevices Operations Division. "By combining Epson's state-of-the-art quartz and semiconductor technologies these powerful new products fulfill a strong market need and will provide enhanced value to customers in a variety of industries."

Increasingly, makers of both consumer products and industrial equipment want to use motion sensing and control in their applications, to boost functionality for customers and to help differentiate their products. However, many engineers and developers lack the hardware resources and expertise to incorporate sensors into their applications or to wring the maximum performance from the sensor hardware.



To meet the needs of these customers, Epson, a leader in the crystal device industry, offers sensing platforms that combine Epson's QMEMS(*1) quartz gyroscopic (angular rate) sensors(*2) with the company's semiconductor technology, which spans sensor processors and GPS devices. Epson's new sensing platforms combine hardware (a unit or module) that processes and digitizes sensor data and with software that displays and stores sensor data sent to a PC via one of the many wired, wireless and other interface options, these sensor evaluation tools enable even novices to easily evaluate sensors, thus facilitating smooth application development.

These sensing platforms can be used in the development of a wide range of sensor applications, including applications for motion sensing, motion analysis, position sensing, and interfaces. By providing these platforms, Epson is looking to identify the wants and needs of a variety of customers and to expand and enhance its product lineup in the future. In its SE15 long-range corporate vision, Epson has identified sensing as an important growth business. The company will thus continue to leverage its crystal-based QMEMS technology in the sensing of quantities such as time, pressure, and angular velocity, driving further advances in convergence with semiconductor and software technologies, to provide customers with a wide array of device solutions, including products, modules, and systems that are easy to use and that they know they can trust.

The multifunction sensor evaluation units in the E Series perform a variety of sensing tasks. They have a six-axis sensor, which consists of three Epson gyroscopes that provide high accuracy and stability (±1,000 deg/s) on three axes and a triaxial accelerometer(*3) with a dynamic range of ±6 G, a triaxial geomagnetic sensor(*4), and a pressure sensor(*5). These evaluation units are available with either a ZigBee(*6) or a USB interface for easy connection to a PC. They also come with an accessory board that can be used to freely expand the interfaces as well as a power source for use in an even wider range of evaluation environments.



The M Series consists of more compact and even easier-to-use sensor evaluation modules with specialized sensor functions. There are two models in the M Series: the S7U4E002002, a highly accurate motion sensor with six degrees of freedom, and the S7U4E002003, a position sensor with a GPS receiver. Specialized for a single function and sporting a compact design, each of these modules can easily be built into portable, hand-held evaluation equipment. A micro-USB interface board (sold separately) is also available for performing evaluations in a PC environment.

These sensing platforms can be used in the development of a wide range of sensor applications, including applications for motion sensing, motion analysis, position sensing, and interfaces. By providing these platforms, Epson is looking to identify the wants and needs of a variety of customers and to expand and enhance its product lineup in the future. In its SE15 long-range corporate vision, Epson has identified sensing as an important growth business.

The company will thus continue to leverage its crystal-based QMEMS technology in the sensing of quantities such as time, pressure, and angular velocity, driving further advances in convergence with semiconductor and software technologies, to provide customers with a wide array of device solutions, including products, modules, and systems that are easy to use and that they know they can trust.

Glossary
(*1) QMEMS
QMEMS is a combination of "Quartz," a crystalline material with excellent characteristics such as excellent frequency stability and high precision, and "MEMS" (micro electro mechanical system). QMEMS devices, produced via a microfabrication process on a crystalline material instead of on a semiconductor material like MEMS, offer high performance in a compact package.

(*2) gyroscopic (angular rate) sensor
A sensor that measures rotation angle (angular rate) of an object per unit of time with respect to a reference axis.

(*3) accelerometer
A sensor that measures changes of velocity per unit of time

(*4) geomagnetic sensor
A sensor that measures the magnitude and direction of a magnetic field

(*5) pressure sensor
A sensor that measures changes in the pressure of a gas or liquid

(*6) ZigBee
A short-range wireless communications standard for home electronics






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