Research in SIMTech


The mission of the group is to develop precision length dimensional measurement technology and manpower to support high value-add manufacturing in Singapore. The group consists of core competences in optics, image processing, and material characterization and reliability. The group's research focuses on 3D dimensional measurements by using middle-IR optics and X-ray optics respectively. The research is supported and extended to material characterization and reliability analysis which address respectively the light-matter interaction in measurements and the analytics of the measurement data. The target industry sectors include semiconductor, electronics, aerospace, med-devices, and bio-manufacturing. 

Optics Team

The mission of the team is to develop imaging optics to encode 3D measurants into optical signals for precision measurements. The team is currently developing a high resolution and high sensitivity mid-IR spectroscopy-tomography microscopy technology. The development drives research in the areas of mid-IR optical comb by microstructure optics, optical coherence tomography, near-field optics, and mid-IR optics simulation and modeling. The team is also conducting research on X-ray optics with an aim to develop new X-ray sources and X-ray waveguides. 

Image Processing Team

The mission of the team is to develop 3D image reconstruction and image processing technologies for automatic inspection and measurements. The development drives research in the areas of computed tomography methods, 3D image processing methods, dual-energy X-ray CT systems, X-ray phase contrast imaging system, simulation and modeling of X-ray-matter interaction, X-ray material characterization, and high speed image processing. The team collaborates with optics team closely in the area of X-ray optics. 

Reliability Team

The mission of the team is to develop reliability analysis methodologies to correlate the measurements to the reliability requirement such as failure analysis, life-time assessment, and re-manufacturability. The development drives research in the areas of accelerated testing technologies, non-destructive testing techniques, measurements, material characterization, multi-physics simulation and modeling, and data analytics. The current research focuses include reliability analysis of solid-state lighting devices and reliability of composite structures. The team research is also partnered with SIMTech-NTU Joint Lab on Reliability. 

Diagnostics Unit

This unit manages state-of-the-art analytic equipment of SIMTech and provides measurements and material characterization services to support research of the institute. The core competences of DU include length dimensional metrology, spectroscopy, SEM metallography, thermal characterization, mechanical testing and characterization, and X-ray characterization. The unit also actively participates in the group research by looking into optical properties of matters and the light-matter interaction. 

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Patents/Awards/Achievements/Differentiation

Filed Patents

  • "Computed Tomography Method and Apparatus for Centre of Rotation Determination" WO 2009/131544 A1, Patent No.: 165633, May 2013
  • "Method and Apparatus for Reorientated Reconstruction of Computed Tomography Images of Planar Objects", W2008.130325, US 2011/0007864 A1, July 2010
  • "Computed Tomography System and Method" (P-No.141758,  WO 2007/043974 A1), Feb 2009
  • "Universal Method for Centre-of-Rotation Determination in Computed Tomography Technology", 2006
  • "On-the-Fly 3-D Measurement of Semiconductor Device Contact Points Using a Colour Camera and Colour Illuminations", US Patent Application no. US 11/438,698, 2006
  • "Computed Tomography with Central Ray Determined by Projections of the Part to be Inspected", PCT/SG2005/000345, November 2005
  • "Optical Interleaver", filed US Patent, June 2004
  • "Equaliser Circuit for a Light Source", filed US Patent September 2004

Invention Disclosures

  • Subsurface Defect Inspection with Differential Temperature Profile Reconstruction, March 2012
  • Noise-Resilient Method for Coherence Peak Sensing of White Light Interferometry, June 2011
  • 3D Thin and LArge Size UHF Antenna, 2012
  • System and Methods for Determining the Location Dynamics using Multi-way Range (MWR) Methodology, 2012
  • RFID Asset Smart Storage Management System and Method, 2010
  • Near-field RF Sensing for Proximity and Object Condition with Improved Measurement Techniques, 2010
  • 3D RFID HF Transformer Antenna, 2008
  • Surface Acoustic Wave RFID and Memory Chip Dual Interface Tag, 2008
  • Computed Tomography Reconstruction Method for Planar Object with Automatically Determined Orientation 2006
  • On-the-fly lead coplanarity inspection for semiconductor components 2005

Awards & Special Achievements

  • Institute of Engineers Singapore (IES) Prestigious Engineering Achievement Award 2005 for Multi-wavelength Modulation Technologies for Optical Signal Processing
  • Best project award, Photonics Innovation Village Competition, Photonics Europe 2004 - All-fibre Optical Interleavers/De-interleavers (jointly developed with NTU)
  • First prize winner of 2004 Singapore Young Inventors Awards, Wang Qi Jie for his All-fibre Optical Interleavers/De-interleavers
Research Themes Research Facilities/Equipments
Differential scanning calorimetry Dynamic Mechanical Thermal Analyser (DMA) Grinding/ Polishing Machine Infinite Focus 3D Metrology System Low Speed Diamond Saw Multi-sensor Coordinate Measuring Machine Nanofocus High Contrast X-ray Imaging Instrument Nano-indentation System with High Temperature Stage and Nano-impact Module Precision Diamond Wire Saw Rotational Rheometer Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) with Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectrometer (EDS) and Wavelength X-ray Spectrometer (WDS) Scanning Probe Microscope Thermogravimetric Analyser (TGA) Universal Testing Machine Vickers MicroHardness Tester X-ray Diffractometer X-ray Fluorescence