The invention improves the machinability of brittle materials and enables 3D micro-machining


A new manufacturing paradigm is emerging whereby there is an increasing need for rapid production of bespoke high value products. This is already prevalent with the rise in the use of 3D printing and machining technologies. Such approaches, if applied to the microsystems space will allow for rapid biosensor development, bespoke micro-component fabrication, and novel systems for the Internet of things.

Newcastle University has developed a novel method, called Hy-MEMBS, for machining a variety of brittle materials while minimising edge chipping which usually occurs when milling microscale grooves in brittle planar or 3D materials.

The team have secured £300k of Innovate-UK funding to create a service-based spin out company, called Microbritt, which will address the rapidly increasing need for high-speed, high-value bespoke manufacturing with microscale precision.

Microbritt will offer a service for customers to produce low-volume high-value items and proof-of-concepts; being like 3D printing services but offering a rapid manufacturing process with hard brittle materials that cannot be printed. The company will manufacture microsystem prototypes and replication tools for a range of target industries such as biosensors (microfluidics), optoelectronic waveguides and MEMS (Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems) microphones.

Key Benefits

Rapid Manufacturing and Prototyping
Minimise edge chipping of brittle and hard materials enabling fabrication of full 3d architectures.


The technology has use in a wide range of applications, including but not limited to:

Biosensors (microfluidics),
Optoelectronic waveguides
MEMS microphones

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