Monday, March 24, 2008

US Patent 7345805 - Integration of MEMS micromirrors with MEMS switches

This patent from Iridigm Display (which was acquired by Qualcomm in 2004) is basic to displays using micromirrors which can switch between reflective and opaque states depending on interference patterns created by the micromirrors. This patent focused on an all-MEMS display design which uses micromechanical structures as the addressing elements for driving the rows and column pixels as well as for the micromirrors. This may simplify fabrication in comparison to the formation of both drive transistors and MEMS in the display which requires diverse fabrication steps which may be non-compatible. Claim 1 reads:

1. A display device comprising:

a MEMS display portion comprising rows and columns of MEMS elements; and

a plurality of MEMS switches formed as one or more additional rows or columns of additional MEMS elements adjacent to the MEMS elements of said display portion, wherein the pitch of the additional MEMS elements is matched with the pitch of the MEMS elements of the display, and wherein the additional MEMS elements are configured to switch signals to the display portion.

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