EECS 179 Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS) (2017-2018)

EECS 179 Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS)

(Not required for any major. Selected Elective for EE.)
Catalog Data:

EECS 179 Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS) (Credit Units: 4) Small-scale machines, small-scale phenomena, MEMS fabrication, MEMS CAD tools, MEMS devices and packaging, MEMS testing. Biomedical Engineering and Electrical Engineering majors have first consideration for enrollment. Upper-division students only. (Design units: 2)

Required Textbook:
Recommended Textbook:
. Edition, , 1969, ISBN-13 978-1580535908.

Mark Bachman
Relationship to Student Outcomes
No student outcomes specified.
Course Learning Outcomes. Students will:

1. Describe new applications and directions of modern engineering.

2. Describe the techniques for building microdevices in silicon, polymer, metal and other materials.

3. Describe the physical, chemical, biological, and engineering principles involved in the design and operation of current and future microdevices.

4. Critically analyze microsystems technology for technical feasibility as well as practicality.

5. Describe the limitations and current challenges in microsystems technology.

Prerequisites by Topic

Basic physics, chemistry, electronics and mechanics at the sophomore level.

Understanding of basic physics.

Understanding of engineering materials at the level of E 54, a sophomore-level course.

Understanding of electronics and semiconductors to the basic semiconductors and electronics.

Lecture Topics:
  • Introduction to class and overview of microsystems
  • Microfabrication methods 1, lithography and bulk micromachining
  • Microfabrication methods 2, surface micromachining techniques
  • Microfabrication methods 3, non-traditional techniques
  • Overview of MEMS sensors and actuators MEMS pressure sensors and transducers
  • MEMS accelerometers and gyroscopes Overview of biomedical MEMS;
  • Microfluidic chips Minimally invasive devices; Overview of telecom microdevices
  • Optical MEMS devices;
  • RF MEMS devices
  • What's next: MEMS, NEMS, microfactories and nanotechnology.
Class Schedule:

Meets for 3 hours of lecture and 1 hour of discussion each week for 10 weeks.

Computer Usage:

Computer usage is not required, however, all lectures are available from the course website, as well as test scores, test keys, downloadable notes, and interactive links.

Laboratory Projects:


Professional Component

Contributes toward the Electrical Engineering Major Design experience

Design Content Description

Students are expected to critically analyze micro-device designs currently in commercial markets or in development for commercial deployment. Their analysis should reveal strengths and weaknesses of the designs as they relate to performance, manufacturability, and suitability to solving the application problem. Content is highly interdisciplinary and students are encouraged to think outside their traditional areas of expertise in order to solve problems for a wide variety of markets.
100% of design content. During lectures, many micro-device examples are provided and their design issues are discussed. Discussion includes device design as well as manufacturing design (usually critically linked to the design of the devices) and market design (price, reliability, market acceptance). Famous successful devices are presented as well as many historical failures, with discussion of their reasons for success or failure. Students are expected to apply these skills in the quizzes and on the final exam by designing or analyzing basic transducers, describing their performance, and specifying their manufacturing process.

Lectures: 100%
Laboratory Portion: 0%
Grading Criteria:
  • Quiz 1: 15%
  • Quiz 2: 15%
  • Quiz 3: 15%
  • Quiz 4: 15%
  • Final exam: 40%
  • Total: 100%
Estimated ABET Category Content:

Mathematics and Basic Science: 0.0 credit units

Computing: 0.0 credit units

Engineering Topics: 4.0 credit units

Engineering Science: 2.0 credit units

Engineering Design: 2.0 credit units

August 21, 2017
Senate Approved:
October 8, 2013
Approved Effective:
2013 Fall Qtr