Microelectromechanical-systems (MEMS) technology is impressive in its capabilities of producing small resonators and miniature RF switches. In large volumes, MEMS devices have been consumed by automotive electronic systems and cellular handsets. But the last several years have been hard on MEMS markets (as well as on most areas of electronics), with sales of MEMS devices slumping from a boom year in 2007. Fortunately, a new report assembled by iSuppli Corp., "MEMS Back to Double-Digit Growth," projects double-digit growth for MEMS products in 2010.

The report notes that MEMS revenue should reach $6.54 billion in 2010, a rise of more than 11 percent over sales of the previous year. The MEMS market is expected to expand through 2014, with a projected compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.7 percent throughout the 2009-2014 period. Much of the growth will be fueled by applications in mobile cellular handsets and consumer electronics, with vehicular safety systems contributing their fair share. MEMS devices are made like semiconductors, in large volumes and at low cost. For such devices, large-volume electronic markets will usually find a place.