Skip to main content
HomeMembership DirectoryMembership Directory Bio

Membership Directory

Tal Nagourney   (#37)   

Basic Information

Ann Arbor, MI
Email Address
University of Michigan
PhD Candidate
1301 Beal Ave

Ann Arbor, MI  

Personal Information

Additional Information

COE EECS - ECE Division
Advanced Materials, Processes, and Packaging



Photos of my research on high-performance MEMS gyroscopes showing various stages of production:

(Top left) Blowtorch-molded fused silica birdbath shell resonator.
(Top right) Molded shell on a US penny.
(Bottom left) Isolated shell mounted for resonant characteristic testing.
(Bottom right) Metallized shell in silicon electrode packaged prepared for gyroscope operation testing.

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to promote the incredible research capabilities of the University of Michigan:

An interview I gave regarding my research on high-performance MEMS inertial navigation:


U.S. citizen having the unrestricted right to work in United States.

To work closely with a team, solving unique problems and applying my microelectronics training and technical skills in a challenging, hands-on research position in the MEMS industry.


    University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

Doctor of Philosophy, Electrical Engineering (Expected Fall, 2017)

Research Advisor: Professor Khalil Najafi

GPA: 3.73/4.00

    Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

Master of Engineering, Electrical Engineering (May 2012)

GPA: 3.84/4.00

Winner of Cornell’s ECE Poster Competition – 3rd Prize

    Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY

Bachelor of Science, Microelectronic Engineering, Communications Concentration (May 2010)

GPA: 3.21/4.00


  1.  T. Nagourney, J. Cho, A. Darvishian, B. Shiari, and K. Najafi, “130 Second Ring-Down Time and 3.98 Million Quality Factor in 10 KHz Fused Silica Micro Birdbath Shell Resonator,” in Hilton Head Workshop: A Solid-State Sensors, Actuators and Microsystems Workshop, Hilton Head Island, SC, 2016.
  2. B. Shiari, T. Nagourney, A. Darvishian, J. Cho, K. Najafi, “Numerical Prediction of Stress Evolution During Blowtorch Reflow of Fused Silica Micro-Shell Resonators,” in IEEE International Symposium on Inertial Sensors and Systems, Laguna Beach, CA, 2016, pp. 13–16.
  3. T. Nagourney, J. Cho, A. Darvishian, B. Shiari, and K. Najafi, “Micromachined High-Q Fused Silica Bell Resonator with Complex Profile Curvature Realized Using 3D Micro Blowtorch Molding,” in Transducers – 18th International Conference on Solid-State Sensors, Actuators and Microsystems, Anchorage, AK, 2015, pp. 1311–1314.
  4. B. Shiari, A. Darvishian, T. Nagourney, J. Cho, and K. Najafi, “A Comparison Between Experiments and FEM Predictions for Blowtorch Reflow of Fused Silica Micro-Shell Resonators,” in Transducers – 18th International Conference on Solid-State Sensors, Actuators and Microsystems, Anchorage, AK, 2015, pp. 776–779.
  5. T. Nagourney, J. Cho, A. Darvishian, B. Shiari, and K. Najafi, “Effect of Metal Annealing on the Q-Factor of Metal-Coated Fused Silica Micro Shell Resonators,” in IEEE International Symposium on Inertial Sensors and Systems, Hapuna Beach, HI, 2015, pp. 1–5.
  6. J. Cho, T. Nagourney, A. Darvishian, B. Shiari, J.-K. Woo, and K. Najafi, “Fused Silica Micro Birdbath Shell Resonators with 1.2 Million Q and 43 Second Decay Time Constant,” in Hilton Head Workshop: A Solid-State Sensors, Actuators and Microsystems Workshop, Hilton Head Island, SC, 2014, pp. 103–104.
  7. A. Darvishian, B. Shiari, J. Cho, T. Nagourney, and K. Najafi, “Investigation of Thermoelastic Loss Mechanism in Shell Resonators,” in ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, 2014, pp. 1–6.

Poster & Research Presentations
  1.  Poster: "130 Second Ring-Down Time and 3.98 Million Quality Factor in 10 KHz Fused Silica Micro Birdbath Shell Resonator" in Hilton Head Workshop 2016: A Solid-State Sensors, Actuators and Microsystems Workshop
  2. Poster: "Micromachined High-Q Fused Silica Bell Resonator With Complex Profile Curvature Realized Using 3D Micro Blowtorch Molding" in 2015 International Conference on Solid-State Sensors, Actuators and Microsystems
  3. Poster:  "Precision Rate Integrating Shell Microgyroscopes (PRISM)" in 2015 DARPA Micro Position, Navigation, and Timing Program Review
  4. Presentation: "Effect of Metal Annealing on the Q-Factor of Metal-Coated Fused Silica Micro Shell Resonators" in 2015 IEEE International Symposium on Inertial Sensors and Systems
  5. Poster:  "Precision Rate Integrating Shell Microgyroscopes (PRISM)" in 2014 DARPA Micro Position, Navigation, and Timing Program Review
  6. Presentation (Backup): "Development of Fused Silica Micro Birdbath Resonator Gyroscope" in 2014 Joint Navigation Conference: Institute of Navigation (ION)
  7. Poster: "High-Q 3-D Micro-Resonators Fabricated with a Novel Blowtorch Molding Technique" in 2013 University of Michigan Engineering Graduate Symposium
  8. Poster: "High-Q 3-D Micro-Resonators Fabricated with a Novel Blowtorch Molding Technique" in 2013 University of Michigan Lurie Nanofabrication Facility User’s Symposium
  9. Poster: (3rd Prize Winner) "Opto-Thermally Driven Micro-Speaker for Hearing Aid Applications" in 2012 Cornell ECE Day Poster Competition
  10. Poster: "Design and Fabrication of Memristors" in 2010 Rochester Institute of Technology Senior Design Project Exposition
  11. Booth attendant demonstrating MEMS research work with Professor Lynn Fuller’s Team Galt research group in 2010 Imagine RIT – Innovation and Creativity Festival


    K. Najafi, T. Nagourney, and J. Cho, “Three Dimensional Microstructures and Fabrication Process,” U.S. Patent 14/985,859, Filed December 31, 2015.


Fellowship Applications

    National Defense Science & Engineering Graduate Fellowship

Applied 2012, 2013

    National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program

Applied 2013


Work Experience

    Research Assistant, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI          2/13–9/13

  • Investigation of shape controllability in micro blowtorch thermal reflow molding process using fused silica.
  • Development of fabrication process for repeatable production of fused silica micro rate-integrating gyroscope, the birdbath resonator gyroscope (BRG).
  • Contributed to development of a novel MEMS humidity sensor for a specialized application.

    Consultant, Future Technologies Team, Bright Source Industries Israel, Jerusalem, Israel           1/11–7/11

  • Served as project leader for improving heliostat power management efficiency in future installations.
  • Designed and simulated a cost-effective charging circuit to improve heliostat power management efficiency.
  • As the only electrical engineer on the Future Technologies team, worked closely with the SVP of R&D and senior researchers providing valuable insight and advice on design options and external development proposals.
  • Regularly presented design improvements to a range of audiences including the President and EVP of Engineering and R&D, team managers, and engineers.
  • Designed and presented a novel and innovative method of MW-scale energy collection tailored to our application.
  • Produced a comprehensive paper detailing my research and design proposals to facilitate development continuity.

    Research Assistant, Team Galt, Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY          9/10–12/10

  • Independently researched and developed methods of quantifying total organic carbon content in drinking water.
  • Tested multiple methods of TOC detection, producing comprehensive reports detailing the intricacies and advantages/disadvantages of each method. Utilized this information to design unique MEMS that can take the place of very large equivalent systems and integrate with a series of other MEMS water quality sensors.
  • Performed complete reconfiguration of an Orthodyne Electronics wire bonder, improving performance and efficiency while tailoring its function to the ISFETs being packaged.
  • Increased functionality of ISFETs through improved packaging and encapsulation techniques and materials.
  • Frequently presented proposals and updates on research and testing progress to professional audiences including representatives from external collaborators.

    Co-Op Employee, Team Galt, Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY           11/09–2/10

  • Designed and fabricated printed circuit boards and amplifiers to facilitate packaging of devices and to perform small signal amplification during MEMS accelerometer testing.
  • Performed and taught proper packaging methods of MEMS devices, customized to each device’s function, for an entire MEMS class. Developed wire bonding solutions for each individual and taught the technique to specialized students.
  • Created several methods for precise diaphragm position measurement during accelerometer testing.
  • Designed novel methods of shockwave generation to facilitate testing of shock and pressure sensors. Built an air-powered device and performed extensive shockwave and high-pressure testing on a variety of commercial and RIT pressure sensors.
  • Designed and built a low-mass electro-dynamic shaker capable of generating over 100 Gs of force for accelerometer and vibration sensor characterization. The system was effective yet inexpensive, eliminating the need for a costly commercial model.
  • Presented weekly on research and testing status and produced a paper summarizing the developments.

    Co-Op Employee, Display Technologies Group, Eastman Kodak Company, Rochester, NY          1/08–8/08

  • Closely collaborated with the co-creator of OLED technology.
  • Operated, maintained, and repaired proprietary Kodak Vapor Injection Source Technology OLED fabrication tools. Trained other employees in the workings of the system and in proper and efficient operation and repair.
  • Characterized thin film deposition of organic materials for the study and development of OLED technology.
  • Designed, implemented, and updated a data organization and sharing system to facilitate team congruence.
  • Operated a large high-vacuum British Vacuum Technology chamber that was evacuated with two mechanical rough pumps and a liquid helium driven cryopump.
  • Provided test status/result updates and input regarding future test plans at weekly team meetings.
  • The deposition technology reached maturity and was purchased by LG in 2009.

    Orthotic and Prosthetic Technician, U of M Orthotics and Prosthetics Clinic, Ann Arbor, MI          6/04–8/07

  • Fabricated various orthotic and prosthetic devices, working closely with clinicians and patients to produce and fine-tune the desired product.
  • Managed multiple projects, functioning independently and producing work comparable to certified orthoticians and prostheticians. Regularly received praise for work quality and was rewarded with greater challenges.
  • Spent hundreds of hours using and maintaining various grinding, cutting, and bonding tools.
  • Worked with advanced materials including titanium and carbon fiber.
  • Installed state of the art myoelectric systems to enable patient control over prostheses through nerve impulse detection.

Academic Projects
  • (Ongoing) Ph.D. Research Project: Improved performance of gyroscope resonator by ten times, producing the world’s longest ring-down of a micro shell. Responsible for fabrication of high-Q fused silica birdbath resonator shells for applications in a micro rate-integrating gyroscope. Contributing to fabrication process development and stability improvement. Design and implementation of a thermal control system. Currently improving thermal image analysis to better understand nuances of blowtorching process and facilitate greater control over device dimensions, uniformity, and repeatability.
  • (2014) Integrated Microsystems Design Proposal Project: Group project, design and simulation of human-prosthetic interface. Flexible shear and pressure sensor array with high spatial resolution for integration with prosthetic hand. Piezoelectric haptic feedback vibratory actuator array to convey sensor information to user, enabling sense of and improved control over prosthesis. Received highest recommendation rate amongst competing proposals.
  • (2013) Monolithic Amplifier Circuit Design Project: Group project, design and simulation of switched capacitor DC-DC voltage down-converter for dynamic voltage supply and tracking. Layout of 446 transistors in 130 nm IBM process design kit. Achieved 65% efficiency over wide power range of 200 µW to 8 mW at 200 MHz switching speed. Project nominated in top four out of fifteen by classmates.
  • (2013) RF MEMS Design Proposal Project: Group project, design and simulation of a high frequency ohmic MEMS switch having decreased operating voltage by taking advantage of motional gain at resonance. Finite element modeling and ANSYS HFSS simulations confirmed desired device functionality including low voltage actuation, low insertion loss, and high isolation.
  • (2012) Master of Engineering Project: Won 3rd Prize in annual ECE poster contest. Perform modeling and characterization of opto-thermally actuated MEMS speaker for hearing aid implementation. Finite element analysis of the speaker to simulate the effect of varying design parameters on the thermal time constant, eigenfrequencies, frequency response, and efficiency. Testing and characterization of fabricated devices using an interferometer to measure eigenfrequencies. Found close correlation between simulation and lab results.
  • (2011) MEMS Gyroscope Design Project: Group project, design, modeling, and simulation of a MEMS angular rate gyroscope. Balance design parameters to satisfy angle random walk, bandwidth, full-scale range, and size requirements while minimizing cost. Verify performance with COMSOL finite element analysis and MATLAB and perform device layout in Cadence Virtuoso.
  • (2011) Nanobiotechnology Design Project: Working with a professionally diverse team, conceive and design a novel microelectrofluidic device to study the individual factors that may influence a breast cancer cell’s migratory process. The device is capable of independent control of a chemogradient, electric field, and magnetic field.
  • (2010) Bachelor of Science Senior Design Project: Design an original fabrication and characterization process for the investigation of memristor technology, a first for RIT. Develop a procedure for fabrication in basic clean rooms. Presented the project at the 28th Annual Microelectronics Engineering Conference to industry representatives, RIT faculty, and classmates.
  • (2009) CMOS Processing Lab Project: Contribute to fabrication, independently perform all aspects of the 80-step process. As in industry, it is necessary to keep all active team members informed to promote a harmonious work environment. To accomplish this, MESA manufacturing execution system is utilized to track the progress of each wafer lot and monitor process repeatability.
  • (2009) MEMS Design and Fabrication Project: Use the Mentor Graphics software suite to design a one-dimensional MEMS accelerometer. Carry out device fabrication in RIT’s clean room and develop a novel test fixture to apply centripetal force in a controlled fashion. Measure and quantify device performance.
  • (2009) VLSI Design: Develop state machines and carry out logic design and layout of fundamental logic gates. Assemble components hierarchically into a 4-bit CMOS microprocessor and verify proper setup through design and electrical rule checking and simulation. Write a program that utilizes all of the processor’s functions in order to verify correct design and operation.
  • (2007) IC Technology Lab Project: Successfully fabricate metal gate PMOS integrated circuit chips using a 4-level microlithography process. Process includes diffusion, oxidation, ion implantation, and metallization. Verify proper device function through extensive I-V characteristic testing and analysis.
  • (2007) Design of Experiments Lab Project: Design and carry out response surface methodology of OIR 620 photoresist utilizing a Box-Behnken experimental design consisting of 15 treatment combinations. Characterize sensitivity, contrast, and film thickness loss through statistical analysis of data using JMP software.


Interpersonal and Communication

Extensive public speaking and teamwork experience. Meaningful contributions to several research groups. Primary resource for research publication review and editing in Najafi research group.



Lithography, Ion Implant, Diffusion, Sputtering, Evaporation, CVD, Dry Etch, Wet Etch, CMP.

Design and Simulation Software

FEM – COMSOL Multiphysics.

CAD – SolidWorks.

Circuit – Design and simulation using Cadence OrCAD Capture, PSpice, MATLAB SimElectronics, TINA-TI.

Semiconductor – Process simulation using Silvaco’s ATHENA TCAD interactive tools.

Layout – Microprocessor layout using Cadence Design Systems.

PCB – Design and layout using PCB123 and ExpressPCB.



Windows & Apple software and hardware use and troubleshooting; repaired and upgraded Windows/Mac computers, built Windows computers. Regular work with Apple, Windows, and Linux operating systems.

Data Analysis Software

MATLAB, MiniTab, JMP, Microsoft Office Productivity Applications.


Hardware and Tool Experience

Many years of experience with a multitude of power and hand tools on large, small, and micro scale, including welding, soldering, and wire bonding. Honed ability for troubleshooting and repairing a vast array of mechanical and electronic devices. Self-taught skills developed by years of automobile maintenance and repair.

    Bachelor of Science – Rochester Institute of Technology
  • MEMS Devices/Systems
  • Thin Films Processes
  • Design of Experiments
  • Semiconductor Devices I & II
  • IC Technology
  • Silicon Processes
  • CMOS Processing
  • Photovoltaic Science
  • Electronics I & II
  • Microlithography Materials
  • Microlithography Systems
  • Linear Systems
  • E & M Fields
  • Optics
  • VLSI Design
  • Engineering Math
  • Modern Physics
  • Digital Systems
  • Intercultural Communication
  • Public Speaking
  • Persuasion

    Master of Engineering ­– Cornell University

  • MEMS
  • Introduction to Quantum & Statistical Physics
  • Nanobiotechnology
  • Mechanical Properties of Thin Films
  • Nanofabrication of Semiconductor Devices
  • Engineering Vibrations

    Doctorate of Philosophy – University of Michigan

  • Monolithic Amplifier Circuits
  • Integrated Microsystems
  • Principles of Microelectronics Process Tech.
  • Digital Integrated Circuit Technology


Understanding and contributing to the development of advanced technology, developing innovative solutions for challenging problems, meeting and collaborating with new people, travel, rock climbing, soccer, slack-lining, hiking, camping, photography, travel – 43 of the 50 U.S. States, Israel, Jordan, India.

Copyright © 2016
Wireless Integrated MicroSensing & Systems (WIMS2)
University of Michigan, College of Engineering
2300A Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Bldg.
1301 Beal Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2122

Phone: 734-763-2126
Fax: 734-647-2342