Smart sensors are everywhere, helping to analyze performance, improve processes, safety and lifestyle. The use of smart sensors has exploded, and is expected to continue growing from billions in 2012 to trillions over the next decade, according to a report from TSensors Summit. 

Maybe that's why 50 percent of companies polled by Autodesk and Taxal said Internet of Things (IoT) was 'critical' or 'very important' to their company, according to The Manufacturer. About 56 percent said they had a related project either in the market or due in the next year, and 78 percent said they would within the next three years.


The Micro/Nano Technology Center at the University of Louisville has a state-of-the-art 10,000-square-foot cleanroom that is used for instruction, research and industry projects. 

The clean room can be used for the fabrication, packaging, and testing of microelectronic devices and circuits, electro-optic devices, micro-machined sensors and actuators and other MEMS devices and structures.

The cleanroom is designed to meet stringent processing specifications. Its potential processes include:

  • Photolithography;
  • Oxidation;
  • Thermal diffusion;
  • Electron beam evaporation;
  • Sputtering;
  • Chemical vapor deposition (CVD);
  • Anisotropic and isotropic silicon dry etching;
  • Reactive ion etching (RIE);
  • Bulk and surface micromachining;
  • Substrate bonding;
  • Wire bonding;
  • Dicing;
  • Packaging;
  • And probe inspection, measurement and testing.


The University of Louisville is conducting groundbreaking research in optical and nanotechnological techniques, components and systems. This includes developing novel technologies and finding solutions to complex industry problems others simply can’t solve. Our impact on industry has resulted in several spin-off companies including the flexible nano needle technology behind the company, NaugaNeedles.

We work on projects that span biomedical engineering, nanotechnology and optical photonics including nanosensors and drug delivering nanoparticles, nanoelectronic gas sensors and thermoelectric energy scavengers, and optical chemical sensors, laser microsurgery methods and higher resolution laser additive manufacturing processes.  

Our research projects include:

  • Nanofiber air-bridges that are self-assembled on top of microdevices;
  • Chemical, optical, pressure and temperature responding sensors and actuators;
  • Holographic laser displays;
  • Robotic vision pattern recognition systems; 
  • Architectural optics for passive heating and cooling;
  • Optical intrusion detectors that work in dense fogs and smoke; 
  • Channel guided microfluidic systems;
  • Massively parallel fluidic control and organization of microparticles;
  • Custom design and synthesis of inorganic, organic and biospecific nanoparticles.


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Percentage of companies already using advanced sensing, measurement or process control, according to a survey for Manufacturing Engineering’s Advanced Manufacturing Opportunities Report.



  • 56% of companies have an Internet of Things (IoT) project due within a year;
  • 78% have an IoT project within the next three years;
  • 50% said IoT was either ‘critical’ or ‘very important’;
  • 35% said IoT was worth investing in development beyond ‘normal R&D activities';
  • 50% said IoT can help differentiate offerings;
  • 58% said IoT helps them better compete;
  • 52% think IoT can help launch new services;
  • 49% said IoT can improve their existing products' uptime.

SOURCE: Autodesk and Taxal survey cited here by The Manufacturer.