Menlo Microsystems, Inc. (Menlo Micro), known for reinventing the electronic switch with its Ideal Switch™ technology, was named to Fast Company’s 2021 World Changing Ideas Awards. The winners honor the businesses, policies, projects, and concepts that are actively engaged and deeply committed to pursuing innovation when it comes to advancing the electrification of everything, solving health and climate crises, social injustice, or economic inequality.
“We’re proud to have Menlo Micro’s Ideal Switch recognized by Fast Company as the “holy grail” in advancing the electrification of everything,” said Chris Giovanniello, co-founder, SVP marketing, Menlo Micro. “After 40+ years of industry attempts, Menlo is impacting billions of devices making them smaller and more connected, supporting next-gen tech like 5G networks. The Ideal Switch is scalable and cost effective enabling a 99% reduction in size, weight, and power losses, minimizing inefficiencies and improving systems design capabilities to bring disruptive new innovation and tech ecosystems into fruition. We’re extremely excited and humbled to receive this recognition.”
Menlo Micro’s Ideal Switch technology creates a new switch category that eliminates compromises and tradeoffs by combining the benefits of electromechanical and solid-state switches into the best of both worlds with its “Ideal Switch.” After over 12 years of research and development at General Electric (GE), the Menlo Micro team has created the Ideal Switch technology enabling the development of multiple new products. As a whole new category of switches, the Ideal Switch has led to a better way of thinking about product development and a new approach to manufacturing that provides the capacity to cost-effectively scale to serve a market opportunity of more than $20 billion.
The Ideal Switch innovation impacts every industry, eliminates compromises required by solid-state switches and mechanical switches and relays, and enables a greater than 99 percent reduction in size, weight, power loss and inefficiency, contributing significantly to lower system level cost. More importantly, the speed at which switching technology can operate has enormous system-level implications for system-level performance, i.e., how fast critical circuits can reconfigure and protect. While a typical mechanical switch may operate in a few milliseconds, an Ideal Switch can operate 1000x faster, in only a few microseconds.
The vastly superior performance of Menlo Micro’s Ideal Switch technology impacts dozens of applications and markets from power management systems to 5G networks which will in turn enable the electrification of everything: today’s rapid transition to electric and autonomous vehicles, advanced avionics, IoT appliances, robotics and more. The Ideal Switch can survive more than three billion cycles without degrading performance. With lifetimes 1000x longer than a mechanical relay, the Ideal Switch is the most reliable micro-mechanical switch technology available.
“There is no question our society and planet are facing deeply troubling times. So, it’s important to recognize organizations that are using their ingenuity, impact, design, scalability, and passion to solve these problems,” said Stephanie Mehta, editor-in-chief of Fast Company. “Our journalists, under the leadership of senior editor Morgan Clendaniel, have discovered some of the most groundbreaking projects that have launched since the start of 2020.”
Now in its fifth year, the World Changing Ideas Awards—with Health and Wellness, AI & Data among the most popular categories. A panel of eminent Fast Company editors and reporters selected winners and finalists from a pool of more than 4,000 entries across transportation, education, food, politics, technology, and more. Plus, several new categories were added, including Pandemic Response, Urban Design, and Architecture. The 2021 awards feature entries from across the globe, from Brazil to Denmark to Vietnam.
Showcasing some of the world’s most inventive entrepreneurs and companies tackling exigent global challenges, Fast Company’s Summer 2021 issue (on newsstands May 10) highlights, among others, a lifesaving bassinet; the world’s largest carbon sink, thanks to carbon-eating concrete; 3D-printed schools; an at-home COVID-19 testing kit; a mobile voting app; and the world’s cleanest milk.
About Menlo Micro
Headquartered in Irvine, California, Menlo Micro has created an entirely new category of electronic switches with its Ideal Switchtechnology. The Ideal Switch eliminates compromises and tradeoffs by combining the benefits of electromechanical and solid-state switches into the best of both worlds. Menlo is bringing more than 99 percent reductions in size, weight, power, and cost to dozens of industries such as medical, aerospace and defense, telecommunications, consumer electronics, industrial IoT, and test and measurement. For more information, visit www.menlomicro.com or follow the company on LinkedIn and Twitter.
About the World Changing Ideas Awards
World Changing Ideas is one of Fast Company’s major annual awards programs and is focused on social good, seeking to elevate finished products and brave concepts that make the world better. A panel of judges from across sectors choose winners, finalists, and honorable mentions based on feasibility and the potential for impact. With the goals of awarding ingenuity and fostering innovation, Fast Company draws attention to ideas with great potential and helps them expand their reach to inspire more people to start working on solving the problems that affect us all.