James Howarth

James HowarthCambridge Mechatronics Limited (CML) licenses its proprietary form of smart metal technology, called shape memory alloy (SMA), to electronics manufacturers. CML uses this material to design and develop miniature motors, also known as actuators, across a range of products.

The company’s actuators, moved by wires thinner than human hair, are particularly suited to applications that require high levels of precision and force. Some of its most significant sales are for use in smartphones where they are incorporated into cameras enabling autofocus and image-stabilisation functions.

James Howarth, as Engineering Director at CML, is in charge of a team of 40. He is responsible for delivering the company’s two leading products: integrated image stabilisation and autofocus, as well as independent image stabilisation. James became an SME Leader in 2019 and credits the programme with refining his communications skills. He says it has given him confidence to take a key role in commercial discussions as well as helping in his strategic thinking.

CML has established relationships with major corporations across international supply chains. The company's licensees have shipped millions of SMA-based camera actuators into smartphones, wearables and drones. CML is now developing technology for further applications in haptics, facial recognition and augmented reality.

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