Time passes by all too quickly. It had been 5 years since the quartz watch that astounded the world, the ‘Seiko Quartz Astron 35SQ,’ had been brought to market. The quartz watch had already become an indispensable tool in people’s daily lives, and had become widely popularized. However, awaiting the top manufacturer at that time, Suwa Seikosha Co., Ltd., was a difficult period of stiff competition from rival companies. It had been crucial that the company continue making quartz watches even more compact and affordable, in order to maintain the dominant position it had held until then. However, tuning fork crystal units, the very heart and soul of these watches, were already as small and cheap as technological limitations would allow. How could they overcome the impending crisis? The solution they eventually chose was the implementation of a completely unknown technology. This second installment of ‘The QMEMS Story’ will explore the efforts of the engineers involved in the technological development of QMEMS’ origins.
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