imec R&D - Shaping the future

Through imec’s technology leadership, our ecosystem of partners, the excellence of our researchers and our high-tech infrastructure, we make a difference in shaping the future – notably when it comes down to:

Driving microchip miniaturization
• Imec has been driving the advances in microchip technology for over 30 years.
• Together with our global partners, we perform groundbreaking research on materials, devices      and chip processing to make chips smaller, faster, cheaper, and with increased functionality.
• Every computer/smartphone includes microchip technology invented by imec.
• We collaborate with all the leading microchip companies in the world (e.g. Intel, Samsung, TSMC, …) and we bring together the entire nanoelectronics ecosystem

Enabling the intuitive Internet of Things
• Thanks to microchip technology, every object – machines, buildings, vehicles, personal appliances – can be connected to the Internet to provide us with a continuous flow of useful information. It is expected that by 2020, this Internet of Things will connect billions of devices.
• Imec develops the building blocks and digital technology for an “intuitive” IoT – an Internet of Things that discretely runs in the background, yet is instrumental to increasing our wellbeing and comfort.
• Concretely, imec’s intuitive IoT consists of ‘thinking objects’ – networked sensors that constantly monitor the environment, provide status reports, receive instructions, and take short-term and long-term actions based on intelligent processing of the gathered data. This intuitive IoT will interact with us and learn from our habits, preferences and health, …  It will make better-informed decisions and take the right actions while taking our privacy and security concerns into account. And it will help us create a more sustainable and safer world at large.

These are some examples of application domains where imec’s research makes the difference:

Revolutionizing healthcare
We bring diagnostics and healthcare within the reach of everybody. By combining knowledge of the patient’s DNA and comprehensive disease and therapy data, precision medicine becomes within our reach, delivering the most effective treatments at reduced cost with the least amount of side effects.

Enabling smart mobility
We envision comfortable and safe transportation for everybody. To realize this vision of smart mobility, imec develops key technologies for connected, driverless cars.

Increasing quality of life in smart cities
Imec’s City of Things project aims to bring the intuitive Internet of Things to the city, improving the quality of living for its citizens. Concretely, we are transforming the city of Antwerp (Belgium) into one of Europe’s largest smart city laboratories where we put key technologies for smart cities to the test.

Smart logistics and manufacturing
Tracking and tracing of food (quality and freshness) from production until delivery in the shop, as well as the storage and stock management of other consumer goods – and even medical supplies to the hospital – can make logistics more efficient and cost effective. And also in the manufacturing domain, digital technologies have tremendous potential, a notable example being imec’s sensor research for smart robotics and the way in which robots can work together more closely with their human co-workers in production environments.

Smart energy
Distributed energy generation from renewables such as sun and wind will become one of the greatest enablers of a sustainable future. Imec performs research into sustainable energy with main focus on solar cells and hardware and digital technologies for a smart energy system.