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Reciprocal Engineering – RE Oy, a company based in Helsinki, develops electrically insulating, transparent to visible light, ferromagnetic thin film materials, processing technologies and solutions for portable electronic devices. Technologically competitive solutions, not compromising environmental requirements, originate from the fundamental research – disciplines involving crystallography, electrodynamics and electronic energy band structure computations – conducted in collaboration with the leading research laboratories. Thin films and processing technologies are developed with the CNMS at ORNL.

 

We solve technical challenges in a sustainable manner; this is
where new materials and processing technology are vital

 

Our main product is a verified, new-type magnetic, electrically insulating group of oxide materials, which allow manufacturing sensors, memories, magneto-optic and microwave and radio frequency devices for handheld electronics – smartphones, devices connected to IoT and special solutions in medical and automobile industries – in a very cost-effective manner.

 

While it is clear that the number of connected devices is ever increasing, it is not apparent how to live with the side effects: according to Enerdata, information and communication technology (ICT) is currently estimated to consume 5%-9% from the global electricity, and the consumption may increase up to 20% by 2030.

 

Manufacturing and using electronics requires monstrous amounts of
energy - this is where engineering solutions make a difference

By replacing energy consuming devices by energy efficient devices in
handheld electronics has a global impact.

 

Merely the patterning of a wafer - critical processing required to create a useful integrated circuit - is a time, money and energy consuming process. A CMOS wafer may go through the photolithographic cycle 50 times - alternative advanced manufacturing has a lot to offer.

 

And what happens to an electronic device after it comes to an end of its service life - the valuable elements might be recycled, while the less valuable and often toxic elements are not always properly treated. This is by no means a straightforward process as contemporary electronics contains toxic elements – such as lead, cadmium, and beryllium – thus causing health hazard risks for workers handling the waste and for the environment. The report of World Economic Forum, A New Circular Vision for Electronics Time for a Global Reboot, states that each year, approximately 50 million tonnes of electronic and electrical waste (e-waste) are produced; only 20% is formally recycled. The report further says that if nothing is done, the amount of waste will more than double by 2050, to 120 million tonnes annually.

 

Considering the raw materials from the beginning makes a difference

 

Disruptive solutions do not originate by applying evolutionary stages to the existing state of practice: it requires scientific and engineering efforts to create solutions for handheld electronics. This is our profession.