IMPACT OF ADVANCES IN COMPONENT PACKAGING ON MEDICAL DEVICESAuthor: James Marshall et al.
Company: Crystalaid Group of Companies
Date Published: 5/19/2004 Conference: Medical Electronics Symposium
The primary focus of early medical devices was the correct analytical function of the product. This focus plus the technology available at the time meant that these devices were large and cumbersome. Further advancements in technology have focused on the reduction in size, to the point where they do not affect mobility, but can still be obtrusive when used on a patient.
Recent advances in micro technology in design and manufacture have meant that making medical devices significantly less obtrusive is part of the design brief. Circuit designers are looking at technologies such as application specific integrated circuits (ASIC) and system on chip (SoC), whilst mechanical designers are looking at smart material and assembly technologies. The convergence of these two strands of Engineering is improving the devices for the user, making them more user friendly, less obtrusive and giving a better analysis of data gathered. As a result of these technologies the component count and footprint of components is reducing without limiting the system capabilities.
The speed of advancement in technology means that we are now within reach of the ultimate goal of some medical devices being completely "invisible" as well as being independently sustainable for the lifetime of the device. Further advances in technology will make it possible to treat ailments that were previously thought too difficult to treat.
Key words: packaging, medical, advances.
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