SenGenuity and Transense to Advance SAW-Based Sensing Technology

HUDSON, NH /PRNewswire/ -- SenGenuity, the sensors division of Vectron International, a leader in the design, manufacture, and marketing of frequency control, sensor, and hybrid product solutions, announced that it has entered a nonexclusive licensing agreement with Transense Technologies, a developer of surface acoustic wave (SAW), wireless, and batteryless sensor systems for the automotive industry. Under terms of the agreement, the two companies will develop and manufacture wireless sensors for use in both pressure and torque sensing applications. This partnership furthers SenGenuity's mission of leveraging the worldwide infrastructure of Vectron's core frequency-control products business toward the development of breakthrough SAW-based sensing solutions.

Since its inception, Transense has compiled an impressive portfolio of SAW-based sensing technology specific to passive pressure and torque sensors that can be wirelessly interrogated for measurement purposes. Applications range from tire-pressure sensing to advanced steering system and powertrain torque monitoring in automotive markets, as well as a broad array of industrial and medical pressure and temperature sensing applications.

"This partnership with Transense serves to broaden SenGenuity's product platform in a way that is synergistic with the sensor technology that we have developed and introduced to the market to date," said Tom Cunneen, Vice President and General Manager, SenGenuity. "We are looking forward to a long and mutually beneficial relationship with Transense as we continue to provide highly differentiated advanced sensing solutions across a multitude of applications and markets."

Acoustic wave sensors function by generating an acoustic wave on a piezoelectric material when a bias is applied. As the acoustic wave propagates through or on the surface of the material, any changes to the characteristics of the propagation path affect the velocity and/or amplitude of the wave. Changes in velocity can be monitored by measuring the frequency or phase characteristics of the sensor and can then be correlated with the corresponding physical quantity being measured.

SenGenuity's wireless sensors operate without the need for a power source; work within the industrial, scientific, and medical band, and are designed to provide instantaneous wireless pressure, torque, and temperature measurements for embedded real-time, in-line environments requiring high resolution, exceptional stability, and accuracy. Coupled with Transense's wireless-interrogation technology, the sensors provide a continuous audit trail for process monitoring markets to control operating costs and maintain quality standards.

"Transense is delighted to have Vectron International as a new licensee, leveraging its considerable manufacturing and marketing expertise within our target markets," said Graham Storey, Commercial Director, Transense Technologies. "A key component of our new business strategy is to seek additional routes to market for our technology in order to gain greater control over our revenue streams. We believe this new agreement offers near- term opportunities in high value markets."

Wireless SAW Pressure Sensor Applications
A key application of the wireless SAW pressure sensor is in tire-pressure monitoring systems (TPMS). The U.S. government recently passed legislation that requires from September 2007 all new passenger vehicles and light trucks under 10,000 pounds of gross vehicle weight to be equipped with tire-pressure monitoring systems. The ability of vehicles, especially critical transport vehicles, to carry the specified load is a direct function of maintaining correct tire pressure. The correct pressure results in the avoidance of catastrophic failure and allows for increased fuel economy and tire life. Further, there is a significant market opportunity in the commercial, agricultural, and construction vehicle markets, where continuous monitoring of tire pressure offers opportunities for operating-cost reductions and elimination of expensive manual maintenance programs. Industrial applications for wireless pressure sensors include HVAC industries, medical applications, semiconductor fabrication plants, and process control requirements.

Wireless Torque Sensor Applications
With a wireless torque sensor, there is a distinct path to satisfying industry drivers for improving powertrain and steering systems with a direct measurement of torque. These industry drivers include shift quality, fuel efficiency, weight reduction, emission standards, and vehicle safety, whereas industry drivers for improving chassis electronic power-assist systems include increased stiffness and system complexity and cost reductions by decreasing the number of mechanical components to a single shaft.

For more information on the licensing agreement or on other acoustic wave sensors from Vectron, please contact a customer service representative at 1-88-VECTRON-1.

About Transense
Transense Technologies is a technology transfer company based in Upper Heyford, Oxfordshire, U.K. Transense develops SAW, wireless, and batteryless sensor systems in partnership with its licensees, Honeywell, Michelin, Texas Instruments, Melexis, Tai-Saw, and Stack. Current applications include TPMS and torque systems for electrical power-assisted steering and driveline management.

About SenGenuity
SenGenuity, an operating division of Vectron International, is a leading provider of breakthrough sensor solutions and products. As part of its growing product portfolio, SenGenuity delivers to customers innovative solutions for measuring the condition of fluids in challenging, embedded environments by coupling its state-of-the-art precision sensor solutions with Vectron's surface and bulk acoustic wave (SAW and BAW) technology. Further, SenGenuity is leveraging its core competencies in AW technology, along with extensive experience in radio frequency, signal conditioning, embedded system electronics design, and advanced packaging technologies to drive the development of breakthrough solutions for gas and physical sensing applications. Dedicated to taking a leadership role in the $50 billion sensor market, SenGenuity is continually designing and manufacturing innovative sensing solutions that can be used across a broad range of industries, and are rapidly becoming the new standard for performance and reliability in critical data-gathering applications. For more information, please call 1-88-VECTRON-1.

About Vectron
Vectron International is a world leader in the design, manufacture, and marketing of frequency control, sensor, and hybrid product solutions. Vectron solves complex timing, filtering, and sensor challenges by delivering customized solutions that speed time to market and offer low total cost of ownership. Vectron uses the very latest techniques in both BAW- and SAW-based designs, from DC to microwave frequencies. Committed to the industry's highest quality service standard and complete satisfaction, Vectron International leverages its global footprint and 50 years of experience to help customers achieve competitive differentiation and improve their bottom line. Vectron International is headquartered in Hudson, NH, and has operating facilities and sales offices in North America, Europe, and Asia. For more information, please call 1-88-VECTRON-1.