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‘Ultrasonic spplications for Knowles Electret and MEMS microphones’ - .PDF file.

Knowles Acoustics has unveiled what it says is the world’s first digital microphone supporting ultrasonic bandwidth. This allows microphones to assist smartphones and consumer electronics with touchless gesture recognition, phone-to-phone data transmission, pen input compatibility for handsets and tablets, and 3D positioning input.

To facilitate these capabilities, the MEMS (micro-electro-mechanical systems) microphone can receive ultrasonic sound waves above the audible range of humans, up to 80kHz, and use those waves to triangulate an object’s location and movement. The technology principles are similar to radar or an ultrasound administered by a doctor during pregnancy.

Beyond the ultrasonic mode, the microphone offers four performance modes, including a low-power voice activation mode, which is ideal for mobile consumer electronics.

According to the company, the product is hoped to offer the best acoustic performance per square millimetre, while reducing the amount of board space required. The company says that compared with other solutions, this advancement offers potential manufacturing cost savings by integrating more capabilities into an existing component with a smaller footprint.

Click on the link above to download an application note about Knowles’ MEMS microphone.

Knowles Acoustics

Knowles Corporation (NYSE: KN) is a market leader and global supplier of advanced micro-acoustic solutions and specialty components serving the mobile communications, consumer electronics, medical technology, military, aerospace and industrial markets. Knowles has a leading position in micro-electro-mechanical systems microphones, speakers and receivers which are used in smartphones, tablets and mobile handsets. Knowles is also a leading manufacturer of transducers used in hearing aids and other medical devices and has a strong position in oscillators (timing devices) and capacitor components which enable various types of communication. Knowles' focus on the customer, combined with unique technology, rigorous testing and global scale, helps to deliver innovative solutions and consistently dependable and precise products. Founded in 1946 and headquartered in Itasca, Illinois, Knowles has more than 10,000 employees in 36 locations around the world.

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