Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to review recent developments in micro‐scale assembly technologies, primarily in the context of microsystems based on three‐dimensional (3D) micro‐electromechanical systems (MEMS) and micro‐opto‐electromechanical systems (MOEMS) technologies. Design/methodology/approach – Following a brief introduction, this paper first discusses the problems associated with the assembly of micro‐components and then considers the role of robots and self‐assembly technologies. This is followed by a brief summary and conclusion. Findings – Experimental robotic systems have been developed and used for the assembly of a wide range of MEMS and MOEMS components. Various self‐assembly technologies offer prospects for massively parallel microassembly but have yet to achieve the success of the robotic approach. Some work has sought to combine the best feature of both approaches but as yet, no technologies have been developed that can rapidly, accurately and cost‐effectively assemble micro‐components into hybrid 3D MEMS/MOEMS devices in a true production environment. Originality/value – This paper provides a detailed review of recent progress in the robotic and self‐assembly of micro‐components.
Assembly Automation – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 27, 2011
Keywords: Assembly; Microassembly; Self‐assembly; Robotics; Microtechnology; MEMS; MOEMS