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Epson Develops the World’s Smallest IMU

TOKYO, Japan, August 8, 2013 – Seiko Epson Corporation (TSE: 6724, “Epson”) has successfully developed the world’s smallest*inertial measurement unit (IMU)*1. Epson will begin shipping samples of the M-V340, the first product in the new V series of IMUs, in December 2013.

As with all upcoming IMUs in the V series, the new M-V340 is far smaller, far lighter, and consumes far less current than Epson’s current IMU, the M-G350. Epson developed a dedicated IC for the V series that enabled the company to reduce the number of parts and optimize the design of the layout to create an IMU that measures 10 x 12 x 4 mm, weighs 1 gram, and consumes just 18 mA of current, typical. In addition, equipped with QMEMS*2 gyroscopic sensors*3, the tiny yet powerful new IMU also exhibits high performance characteristics (7 deg/hr gyro bias instability*4).

The M-V340 is small enough to be used in ultra-compact, lightweight devices to enable IMU applications in a variety of fields. In the medical and rehabilitation fields in particular, ultra-compact, lightweight devices equipped with an IMU show promise in the measurement of movement, as they can be attached to a patient to accurately measure movement without limiting motion or feeling obtrusive.

“Given the present rapid pace of social and technological change, Epson believes that the need for precision sensors that can make previously invisible information visible will only grow going forward,” said Yoshiyuki Moriyama, COO of Epson’s Sensing Systems Operations Division. “In response to growing and diversifying customer needs, Epson has been filling out and strengthening its lineup of IMUs.”

In addition to the M-V340, Epson announced the development of the high-performance M-G352 and M-G362 in July. Epson will continue to leverage its unique technology to provide IMUs and other sensing systems that significantly contribute to our customers’ products and services.

*The smallest IMU among high-performance IMUs having gyro bias instability of 10 dph or less (as of the beginning of August 2013, according to Epson’s research)

See the attachment for product specifications and main applications PDF (44KB)

Upcoming trade shows

Epson will exhibit and demonstrate its latest IMUs at AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems 2013, the world’s largest unmanned systems and robots symposium and exhibition.

Date and place: August 12-15 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.
Epson booth number: 3736
Please see the link below for further details about the exhibition.
http://www.auvsishow.org/auvsi13/public/enter.aspx New Window

Related links

Please see the link below for further details about these products.
http://www5.epsondevice.com/en/sensing_system/product/imu/ New Window

Glossary

*1 Inertial measurement unit (IMU)
A device for sensing inertial motion that consists of angular rate sensors on three axes and accelerometers in three directions.

*2 QMEMS
QMEMS is a combination of “Quartz,” a crystalline material that has excellent stability and precision, and “MEMS,” micro electro-mechanical systems engineered using micro-fabrication technology. QMEMS devices, produced via a micro-fabrication process on a crystalline material, combine the advantages of MEMS technology with the fundamental superiority of Quartz. QMEMS is a registered trademark of Seiko Epson Corporation.

*3 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.

*4 Gyro bias instability
The random variations having 1/f noise density characteristics of gyro output bias calculated by averaging a specified finite length of sampling times and time intervals

*5 Accelerometer
A sensor that measures changes of velocity per unit of time

About Epson

Epson is a global innovation leader whose product lineup ranges from inkjet printers and printing systems, 3LCD projectors and industrial robots to sensors and other microdevices. Dedicated to exceeding the vision of its customers worldwide, Epson delivers customer value based on compact, energy-saving, and high-precision technologies in markets spanning enterprise and the home to commerce and industry.
Led by the Japan-based Seiko Epson Corporation, the Epson Group comprises more than 68,000 employees in 96 companies around the world, and is proud of its ongoing contributions to the global environment and the communities in which it operates.
http://global.epson.com/

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