BSAC Technology Seminar: Follow the Signal: Air-Coupled MEMS Ultrasound’s Journey from the Lab, to the Fab, to your Home

BSAC Technology Seminar Committee

Jonathan Candelaria
Dalene Schwartz Corey
October 31, 2023

Tuesday, 31 October 2023 at Noon | 490 Cory Hall

Watch the seminar recording here
Richard J. Przybyla, TDK-InvenSense

Richard J. Przybyla, Ph.D. (BSAC Alum)

Senior Director of Engineering, TDK SmartSonic™ Time of Flight Sensors
Host: Jonathan Candelaria


In this presentation, Richard will look back at the technology development his group did to bring air-coupled Piezoelectric Micromachined Ultrasonic Transceivers (PMUTs) to consumer electronics. The developments can basically be broken into 3 phases, each about half a decade in duration: university incubation from 2008-2013; spin-off of Chirp Microsystems from BSAC in 2013, pivot, and their struggle to match the product we developed to the correct application; and then acquisition by TDK Corporation in 2018 and scale up of the business and the product line in the following years. He will explain the basic concepts of how the technology works, how we landed on the “correct” first product, and how we’ve addressed many diverse applications with only a few variants of the silicon transceivers.


Richard J. Przybyla is the Sr. Director of Engineering for the SmartSonic Time-of-Flight product line at TDK-InvenSense, where he and his team are responsible for MEMS, CMOS, and software application development for the chip-scale ultrasonic transceivers that he co-invented. Richard joined TDK-InvenSense through the acquisition of Chirp Microsystems, a company founded to commercialize his Ph.D. research to create MEMS ultrasonic transceivers, where he was a co-founder. Richard has about 25 granted US patents as well as 4 journal articles and many conference papers. Richard holds a Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from University of California, Berkeley, and a BSEE from Oregon State University.


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