The SAES Getters Group of Lainate, Italy, a provider of getter technology for high-vacuum applications, and Geneva-based STMicroelectronics, a manufacturer of MEMS (microelectromechanical systems) devices, announced they will partner to produce next-generation MEMS gyroscopes at their facilities near Milan, Italy. SAES' PageWafer getter thin-films will be integrated into STMicroelectronics' gyroscopes to measure angular speeds with higher device sensitivity and stability. Integrated circuits containing MEMS effectively exploit silicon's electrical and mechanical properties, while traditional semiconductors utilize just the electrical. Exploiting silicon's mechanical properties is a recent phenomenon, and MEMS gyroscopes, smaller than the diameter of a human hair, are a relatively new frontier, the companies said. Applications for the new devices include mobile phones, portable devices, MP3/MP4 players, PDAs, gaming and navigation devices, and possibly as image stablizers in camcorders and digital cameras. ST said it expects to ramp to industrial volume production in the first half of 2008.