Contributed by Karen Lightman, Managing Director, MEMS Industry Group
It was my second time in Japan, and this year I was again fortunate enough to attend Exhibition Micromachine/MEMS. This year I put on my “exhibitor cap” and manned the MIG booth – I’m not a big fan of standing around a booth (as anyone who knows me) – so I was very “un-Japanese” and abandoned my booth a lot. It’s way more fun and interesting and entertaining to roam the hall floor and meet/greet new and potentially new MIG members. Thankfully I was parked near the IVAM booth, so my colleagues at IVAM not only supplied me with endless bags of gummy bears, but also had the courtesy to explain where I was. Thank you, Uwe Kleinkes and your staff!
I want to share with you some highlights of my time at Tokyo Big Sight for the Exhibition Micromachine MEMS. The best part was definitely connecting with MIG members who were exhibiting at the show (some for the first time, thanks to the partnership MIG has with Micromachine Center Japan, the sponsor of the show) including Plan Optik (check out my picture with Plan Optik’s Michael Schilling); CEA-Leti (ditto for my picture with Andre ROUZAUD), EVG, Fraunhofer ENAS, Fraunhofer IPMS, Primaxx, Xactix, Coventor, Tegal, Micralyne…and probably a few more who I am remiss to list here.
I’d also like to call out special mention to those who braved an interview with me at the exhibition floor. I enjoyed learning more about EVG’s activities at the Exhibition and their impressions of the show from first-time-attendee Eric Pabo (check out my interview with Eric who kept cool for the interview). I also was impressed with the masterful way that Fraunhofer IPMS’ Michael Wagner explained the expertise of their programs and capabilities.
I also learned a great deal about OMRON’s new products and initiatives. Please check out my interview with OMRON’s Tomonori Seki, who walked me through them and I also took a few pictures of OMRON’s “home of the future” which includes MEMS-sensors everywhere.
I also was honored to meet with several of the SPTS team, including Susumu Kaminaga-san (Chairman, SPP Process Technology Systems), Ichiro “John Paul” Takesako (General Manager, SPTS Business Development), Dave Springer (President, Xactix), and Paul Hammond (CEO, Primaxx). I also had fun interviewing the charming Seiichi Ogino (President, SPP Process Technology Systems in Japan) who updated me on the happenings at SPTS in Japan and their plans for the future.
Another fun part of my trip was definitely the food – day one I had lunch with Tegal’s Paul Werbaneth (VP, Marketing and Applications and Japanese aficionado) onsite where we munched and slurped on cold soba noodles with tempura. Yum. For dinner I had the pleasure of accompanying BEANS/MMC Japan’s Junji Adachi-san where we enjoyed some of the best sake I’ve ever had at a restaurant called Kanda-Izumiya. Day two I dined Japanese-style with OMRON’s Yushio Sekiguchi (Senior General Manager) and Sumio Horiike (General Manager), and then a great dinner at a sushi bar in Shinjuku with Kionix’s Junichi Araya. I braved something that Junichi-san called a “sea bug” – yuck. I don’t need to eat that again! But seriously, thank you all for the great tastes of Tokyo!
I will soon post my blog from my great visit to Sendai’s Tohoku University with Professor Masayoshi Esashi, MEMS Park Consortium and the City of Sendai…more great pictures and yes, more great sushi and sake.
See more pictures on MIG’s flickr account.