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Silicon bigshots create company to make extremely tiny mechanical gadgets

chip maker

Two giants of the semiconductor world have teamed up to create very, very small mechanical devices.

According to a new filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, former Qualcomm executive John Batey and pioneering silicon researchers Dr. Kurt Petersen have formed a company named “INVIS Technologies,” with Batey as chief executive and Peterson as a board member.

The document doesn’t provide too many details, but we do know that the company is based in San Jose, Calif., was established in 2014, and is seeking $500,000 in debt. It appears that one investor has contributed $100,000 since March 31, according to the document.

What’s really intriguing about this development is the field of work and caliber of both Batey and Petersen. In 1982, Petersen authored “Silicon as a Mechanical Material,” still the most-frequently referenced work in microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), and he has published over 100 papers and has been granted 35 patents in the MEMS field. He also established IBM’s micromachining research group in 1975, and has founded three companies in field as well. Batey is a former head of Qualcomm MEMS Technologies and most recently, chairman of the FlexTech Alliance’s board, a company in the displays and flexible, printed electronics industry.

MEMS is the technology of very small devices. “It’s like a cross between microchips and actual mechanical devices. For example, the accelerometer and [gyroscope] in phones are MEMS devices, so are microphones are they have moving parts but on a microscopic scale,” one electrical engineer working with mobile devices explained to us.

The company’s name, “INVIS,” could also be a hint that the company is developing something that will be invisible, or almost, to the naked eye, which would not be surprising given the very small scale of MEMS technology.

We haven’t been able to find out anything else about this company, which doesn’t have a website and appears to be in extreme stealth mode.