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MEMS Industry Pioneer and Technology Visionary Kurt Petersen Joins IMT Board of Directors
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SANTA BARBARA, Calif., April 29, 2013 – IMT, the largest pure-play Micro-Electro-Mechanical systems (MEMS) foundry in the US, announced today the appointment of MEMS industry pioneer and technology visionary Dr. Kurt Petersen to the IMT board of directors. Dr. Petersen is recognized as an expert and a voice of the MEMS industry having created fundamental MEMS technology from inception. He has co-founded six successful MEMS companies and acted as a consultant to more than 50 MEMS enterprises.

“MEMS are transitioning from primarily highly specialized applications to the mainstream, increasing production from millions of devices to billions of devices, a shift that is as significant as the development of wireless was to phones,” said Dr. Petersen. “The industry needs strong wafer foundries to support this immense growth, and IMT has a solid track record of tackling the most challenging MEMS development projects with technical excellence and innovation, while also delivering devices in volume.”

Dr. Petersen has significantly influenced the flourishing MEMS industry. With more than 30 years of expertise, Petersen co-founded Verreon, acquired by Qualcomm; SiTime, a successful MEMS producer; Cepheid, now public with a market cap over $2.5B; and NovaSensor, now owned by General Electric. Serving in a variety of roles at those companies from CTO to president and CEO, Petersen’s work has influenced the development of millions of MEMS parts that are still in production today.

“Dr. Petersen is a fantastic addition to the IMT board. We look forward to leveraging his valuable technical and strategic expertise as we grow the company into the next decade,” said Craig Ensley, president and CEO. “Being located near Silicon Valley, the center of MEMS innovation, combined with our strong scientific and engineering expertise and state-of-the-art fabrication facility, IMT is perfectly positioned to lead the next phase of MEMS technology.”

With a bachelor of science degree cum laude in Electrical Engineering from UC Berkeley and a PhD in EE from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dr. Petersen went on to establish the micromachining research group at IBM in 1975, where he wrote the seminal review paper “Silicon as a Mechanical Material,” published in the IEEE Proceedings (May 1982). This paper is still the most frequently referenced work in the field of MEMS. Since then he has published more than 100 papers and has been granted 35 patents in the field of MEMS. He has been awarded the IEEE Simon Ramo Medal for his contributions to MEMS, is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and is a Fellow of the IEEE in recognition of his contributions to “the commercialization of MEMS technology”.

Dr. Petersen rounds out a strong board of investors and highly-influential industry executives who’ve built multi-billion dollar enterprises including:

  • Malcolm Currie, former chairman and CEO of Hughes Electronics Corporation and president of Delco Electronics
  • Rob Herb, currently a partner of Scale Venture Partners and former executive vice president and chief marketing officer at AMD
  • Jose Suarez, managing director of Investor Growth Capital
  • Dr. Heiner Sussner, managing director of Miramar Venture Partners
  • Barry Waite, former president and CEO of Chartered Semiconductor.

“I look forward to my advisory role at IMT, because they have one of the most talented MEMS process development teams in the world,” added Dr. Petersen. “When it comes to MEMS, IMT is the company to watch.”

Additionally, visit IMT next week at the M2M Forum 2013 in Cambridge, Mass. On May 9 at 1:00pm, IMT sales manager Brian O’Loughlin and other panelists will explore the use of MEMS in medical devices and the supply chain challenges associated with “Incorporating End-User Experience into MEMS-Powered Design through Human Factors Engineering.”

Media contact at IMT: Kim Stowe, Stowe Consulting, (408) 839-8750, kim@stoweconsulting.com