Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Fairchild’s Global Power Resource Center delivers total solution for energy-efficient LED street lighting

SAN JOSE, USA: Fairchild Semiconductor’s China-based Global Power Resource Center (GPRC) has developed a complete LED street lighting solution that provides high efficiency and outstanding thermal performance -- as well as high reliability -- to increase the lifetime of street lamps.

The performance-optimized solution validates Fairchild’s strong energy-efficiency reputation by reducing power consumption in order to meet and exceed the increasing demand for greener electronics. This demand has been driven by consumers as well as governments and regulatory standards worldwide – including China’s central and provincial authorities and ENERGY STAR’s Solid-State Lighting (SSL) guidelines.

Fairchild’s new solution features advanced critical conduction mode (CrCM) PFC, high-efficiency DC-DC and constant current control. This total solution includes two sub-solutions, either parallel or serial, within the same PCB layout delivering up to 91.26 percent and 92.6 percent efficiency respectively from AC input to the LED side, under 220V input voltage.

"Our China GPRC team assists customers by providing solutions that overcome thermal management challenges normally associated with LED street lighting, and by achieving high efficiency and decreasing power consumption," said Benjamin Tan, Fairchild’s regional vice president of Sales and Marketing, China and South East Asia. "High system efficiency depends on the performance of each section of the design. Our leading edge PFC controller and LLC ICs ensure minimum power loss and deliver higher efficiency."

The parallel solution features independent current regulation for each LED string. Therefore, if one string has an open circuit the other strings can still function normally. For the serial solution, independent open circuit protection for each string enables the other LEDs to still work normally even if one LED string experiences an open circuit. If an LED short circuit happens, the constant current circuits ensure all the other LEDs work normally in both parallel and series sub-solution.

This new solution significantly lowers component count by more than 20 for the parallel layout and 86 for the serial layout compared to conventional solutions. Fewer components, robust protection functionality and high LED fault tolerance capability make the solution very reliable.

Fairchild’s GPRC engineers deployed a range of parts from the company’s comprehensive portfolio to develop this total solution such as the FAN7930, an active power factor correction (PFC) controller designed for boost PFC applications operating in CrCM; the highly integrated Fairchild Power Switch (FPS), the FSFR2100 offers everything necessary to build a reliable and robust resonant half-bridge converter.

In addition, Fairchild’s LED lighting solutions are available for applications with output power requirements ranging from <7W up to >100W. These include:

* PFC Controllers that include both standalone and PFC/PWM combo controllers as well as Critical Conduction Mode (CrCM) and CCM technologies, designed to increase system efficiency, reduce system noise, and offer a range of protection features for medium and high power designs.

* PWM Controllers that include standalone and highly integrated solutions with MOSFETs like the Asymmetrical Half Bridge, FSFA2100, the LLC Resonant Half Bridge, FSFR2100, and the stand-alone LLC Resonant Controller, FAN7621.

* Primary-Side-Regulation (PSR) PWM controllers, such as the FSEZ1307, FSEZ1317 and the FAN103, that enable precise constant current (CC) regulation and simplified circuit design.

* And a broad portfolio of high voltage MOSFETs, rectifiers, and diodes.

"Working closely with our customers to develop practical solutions is central to everything we do at Fairchild," Tan added. "We are proud of the work our China GPRC team has done to bring this innovative, and energy-efficient, LED lighting solution to our customers. Fairchild’s latest IC technologies and system expertise, along with our ongoing support, will enable our customers to quickly deploy this new solution, bring new LED lighting products to market and provide a competitive advantage in the market place."

Fairchild's Global Power Resource Centers are a valuable resource for system design engineers, enabling them to quickly differentiate their designs and shorten time-to-market.

The centers were established to deliver innovative, efficient power management and mobile solutions targeting a wide range of applications both locally and around the world. This solution was developed at one of Fairchild’s GPRC locations in China. The company has other centers in the United States, Germany, South Korea and Brazil.

GigOptix ramps 40G driver shipments

PALO ALTO, USA: GigOptix Inc., a leading supplier of high performance electronic and electro-optic components that enable next generation 40G and 100G optical networks, announced that its GX6261, a 40G driver for Differential Quadrature Phase Shift Keying (DQPSK) systems, has entered mass production and is now shipping in volume with GigOptix’ previously announced portfolio of GX3240 and GX3220 DQPSK receiver amplifiers to Tier 1 telecom customers.

Padraig O’Mathuna, GigOptix Vice President of Marketing stated: "The GX6261 ramp to production confirms industry analysts’ predictions of strong demands for high speed 40G and 100G systems. 40G DQPSK is now one of the fastest growing segments in the optical communications space. It is being deployed within metropolitan networks to economically address the bandwidth bottlenecks caused by the exponential growth in enterprise and consumer traffic generated by increased usage of Smartphones and IPTV.

"We developed the GX6261 in close cooperation with our Tier 1 customer to address their DQPSK application and we are now their platform’s sole driver solution. GigOptix is now very well positioned to benefit from the clear market demand for more bandwidth based on not only our broad portfolio of production ready 40G solutions including not only the GX6261 driver, but also our GX3440 40G DPSK receiver amplifier and GX3240 and GX3220 40G DQPSK receiver amplifiers but also our product portfolio for 100G applications. We expect the GX6261 to be a significant contributor to our future growth."

The GX6261 is a high voltage differential driver for 40G DQSPK Mach-Zehnder modulators used in long-haul and metro optical transponders. Key features of the GX6261 include: excellent electrical eye performance; small footprint in a compact 6x6mm2 surface mounted device with simpler system manufacturability due to in-package integrated high frequency coils; low power dissipation with typically 1W lower compared to comparable competition for a total saving of 2W per transponder since two drivers are used per DQPSK transponder.

Daryl Inniss, VP and Practice Leader at Ovum, commented: "40G DWDM is one of the fastest growing segments in optical communications. We expect to see the demand continue to expand as operators transition from 10G to 40G to address the increased demand by consumers and enterprises for more bandwidth. We especially see major DQPSK technology deployments happening in Asia."

In their most recent report on 40G components, Ovum forecasted that the 40G DWDM market for DQPSK drivers would grow from $14 million in 2010 to over $34 million in 2015 with a CAGR of 44 percent.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Digi-Key announces stock on DIGITUS professional fiber optic patch cords from ASSMANN Electronics

THIEF RIVER FALLS, USA: Electronic components distributor Digi-Key Corp. announced that it has stock on DIGITUS Professional fiber optic patch cords from ASSMANN Electronics Inc.

These products are now available for purchase on Digi-Key’s global websites and will be featured in future print and online catalogs.

Made from the highest quality materials, DIGITUS fiber optic patch cords are ideal for high data rate systems, including FDDI, multimedia, Ethernet backbones, ATMs, or any network that requires the transfer of large and time-consuming files. Connectors feature ceramic ferrules to protect against damage, splitting, and wear. Additionally, an individual test report is included with every patch cord.

Microchip's low-power, small form factor op amps help extend bttery life

CHANDLER, USA: Microchip Technology Inc. has announced the MCP6401/2/4 Operational Amplifiers (Op Amps), which add to Microchip’s general-purpose op amp portfolio by providing lower power consumption in small packages.

Featuring quiescent current of just 45 microamperes with a Gain Bandwidth Product (GBWP) of 1 MHz, the MCP6401/2/4 op amps complement Microchip’s eXtreme Low Power PIC microcontrollers (MCUs), helping to extend battery life in a variety of consumer (e.g., music players, appliances and gaming consoles); industrial (e.g., barcode scanners and gas meters); automotive (e.g., signal conditioning for proximity and tire-pressure-measurement sensors); and medical applications (e.g., glucometers and portable patient-monitoring devices), among others.

Additional features include a maximum offset voltage of +/-4.5 mV and a supply-voltage range of 1.8V to 6V over the extended temperature range of - 40ºC to + 125ºC. The op amps are unity gain stable and feature Rail-to-Rail Input and Output operation for better performance across the entire voltage range.

"Customers often cite low current consumption and small form factor as being the most important requirements when designing battery-powered, portable and other applications," said Bryan J. Liddiard, vice president of marketing with Microchip’s Analog and Interface Products Division. "The MCP6401/2/4 op amps address both of these needs, reinforcing Microchip’s leadership as the low-power analog product supplier."

Namrata Pandya, product marketing engineer with Microchip’s Analog and Interface Products Division, continued, "With advantages such as the low operating voltage range and low power consumption in space-saving packages, the MCP6401/2/4 op amps provide a good cost-to-performance ratio, while helping system engineers meet tight power budgets and save valuable board space."

Diodes Inc. extends logic family with open drain parts

DALLAS, USA: Diodes Inc. has extended its family of single-gate logic products with the introduction of open drain functions in both standard and enhanced performance versions.

Direct replacements for industry standard parts, the devices are suitable for voltage level shifting, active low wired OR, and active high wired AND applications. The 74LVC1G06, 74LVC1G07, 74LVCE1G06 and 74LVCE1G07 parts are available in SOT25 and SOT353 packages.

With a wide operating voltage range of 1.65 to 5.5V, the 74LVC1G06 and 74LVC1G07 will suit both portable battery powered as well as traditional 5V applications, while the 1.4V to 5.5V operating voltage range of the enhanced performance 74LVCE1G06 and 74LVCE1G07 enables them to be used in 1.5V logic systems as well. Applications include cell phones, notebooks, netbooks, TVs, E-readers, personal navigation, and entertainment devices.

Capable of drawing less than 1µA of supply current, Diodes’ open drain logic parts ensure energy efficient operation and when the device is powered down, IOFF output circuitry disables the output to prevent backflow current from affecting performance.

20-V step-down Dc-to-Dc non-synchronous regulators simplify intermediate power bus and point-of-load power designs

NORWOOD, USA: Analog Devices Inc. (ADI) has introduced the ADP2302 and ADP2303 DC-to-DC non-synchronous switching regulators, the most recent in its growing portfolio of integrated power management switching regulators.

The new 20-V 2 A (ADP2302) and 3 A (ADP2303) step-down, dc-to-dc switching regulators integrate a high-side MOSFET that delivers power conversion efficiencies greater than 90 percent. The new regulators also feature internal loop compensation, integrated soft-start circuitry and bootstrap diodes to enable high-density solutions for intermediate bus generation and point-of-load regulation. The highly integrated ADP2302 and ADP2303 are available in SOIC packages.

The ADP2302 and ADP2303 also support a wide input voltage range from 3 V to 20 V to accommodate a diversity of point-of-load applications, including consumer electronics and industrial and communications infrastructure equipment. The output voltage is adjustable from 0.8 V to 80 percent of input voltage (VIN).

The regulators' current-mode, fixed-frequency PWM (pulse-width modulation) architecture provides excellent stability and transient response. Under light loads, the regulators automatically operate in PFM (pulse frequency modulation) to reduce light load losses.

A precision-enable pin allows the regulator to be turned on at a precise input voltage for sequencing of multiple devices. System reliability and protection are enhanced further through OCP (over-current protection), UVLO (under-voltage lockout) and TSD (thermal shutdown). The ADP2302 and ADP2303 are ideal replacements for less efficient linear regulators.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Pulse SmartER series CO splitter has lowest profile available

SAN DIEGO, USA: Pulse, a Technitrol company, a leader in electronic component and subassembly design and manufacturing, announced that its new SmartER B8887NL central office (CO) splitter module, at just 8mm high, is the lowest profile splitter module available on the market today.

This lower profile enables denser mounting of multi-channel splitter cards, meaning more modules per digital subscriber line access multiplexer (DSLAM) or roadside cabinet. In addition, since CO splitter modules are often the tallest component on the board, the lower profile increases the airflow area between multi-channel splitter cards.

Pulse’s B8887NL CO splitter modules separate plain old telephone service (POTS) and DSL data signals. The modules are TR-127 compliant for VDSL2 applications. TR-127 is a technical report developed by the Broadband Forum to ensure the highest quality delivery of voice, data, and video services [“triple play”] by maximizing the interoperability of splitters and in-line filters with DSLAMs and modems.

The modules also meet ETSI 600 ohm and China MII standards and incorporate Pulse’s patented technology for better performance, increased compactness, and high-quality construction.

“Pulse’s new splitter module adds a significant measure of flexibility to DSLAM and rack system designs,” explained Ronan Kelly, Pulse product marketing engineer. “It has a maximum height of 8mm as compared to 11.5mm to 14mm in our other SmartER products.”

Pulse’s entire CO splitter family can be customized to this smaller height and similar footprint. Reducing the rack by 0.5U allows an additional seven racks to be included in a standard 42U cabinet. The modules come in trays, but other packaging options are available. Price and availability depend on volume.

Seoul Semiconductor ranked worldwide no. 4 in LED market

SOUTH KOREA: Seoul Semiconductor is pleased to announce that the company has moved up to the world’s fourth largest LED supplier by sales volume. Strategies Unlimited, the market survey agency, reported in its “High-Bright LED Market Review and Forecast 2010,” that Seoul Semiconductor’s 2009 sales of USD $301 million qualified the company for the new ranking.

“SSC holds more than 5,000 patents, which serve the specialized needs of our customers around the world,” the company said.

The world LED market rose 6.2 percent to $5.4 billion, led by demand for LED TVs, the survey said. Sales of LED products into the display market reached $370 million. As applications for LEDs become more diverse, competition for market share amongst the world’s LED suppliers has intensified.

“These growth estimates coincide with our own internal estimates,” SSC said. “And we believe our products are well positioned to serve this enormously diverse market.”

“The results of the report show that, despite the fact that sales of LEDs for LCD TVs last year were less than 10 percent of our total sales, performance was excellent in all market segments including lighting systems. This year, the quantity of LEDs used for LCD TVs in China, Japan, and Taiwan are expected to increase significantly. In addition, the company is showing significant growth in the LED lighting market,” said S.M. Lee, VP of Worldwide Sales at Seoul Semiconductor.

Seoul Semiconductor has built a vertically integrated LED production methodology ranging from EPI to chip, package, and modules covering the entire process of LED production. This facilitates cost competitiveness and flexibility within market situations.

In anticipation of significant growth in the lighting market, Seoul Semiconductor plans to continue its advance into the lighting LED market through its Acriche product line, and an AC power semiconductor light source.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Momentive intros new thermal management solutions for high-performance electronic components

ALBANY, USA: Celebrating 70 years of innovation in silicone technology, Momentive Performance Materials introduced a broad array of silicone-based thermal management solutions at Thermal Engineering 2010 (Techno-Frontier 2010), which is Japan’s only specialized exhibition on heat management, held July 21-23 in Tokyo.

Developed to help solve thermal challenges in high-performance electronic components manufactured by the consumer electronics, automotive and semiconductor industries, the new Momentive products can offer optimal thermal conductivity, processability and long-term reliability. The product lines featured at the show included:

TIA Thermal Gels ─ a line of liquid-dispensed materials for heat dissipation, available in a variety of thermal conductivity levels, viscosities and curing profiles to meet a wide range of design needs. The new gels (TIA130G, TIA221G, TIA216G and TIA208G) are easy to use, can be cured at room temperature, can conform to complex shapes and non-planar surfaces, and can help provide stress relief due to their soft properties.

TIS Curable Thermal Compounds ─ a selection of room temperature curing compounds to be considered for use in minimizing thermal resistance in electronic assemblies, including the newly launched TIS380C and TIS480C-L. As soft Thermal Interface Materials (TIMs), these thermally conductive compounds can help provide stress relief for delicate components and extremely low bleed.

TIG Thermal Greases ─ greases used as thermal interfaces in electronic assemblies. This product line expanded with the introduction of TIG300BX and TIG400BX, both of which can offer high thermal conductivity and minimized bleed.

TIA Thermal Adhesives ─ a family of silicone heat and room temperature cure adhesives, including the newly introduced TIA600R, a heat cure adhesive with very high thermal conductivity, and TIA320R, a heat cure adhesive that can help provide the added benefit of reduced scratching to delicate substrates.

Polartherm Boron Nitride Thermal Fillers ─ a family of highly thermally conductive and electrically insulative fillers that can add these functions to polymers when mixed. The fillers are available in platelet, agglomerate and spherical form to fit development needs.

Highly Thermally Conductive Graphite Materials ─
TPG – graphite based material with thermal conductivity of 1500W/mK (in-plane direction).
TC1050 hybrid material – metal encapsulated TPG that can provide high thermal conductivity, endurance and ease of use.

“Increases in device performance and features, coupled with component miniaturization, continue to make thermal management a critical issue for the electronic and microelectronic industry,” said Nobuyuki Nishiwaki, Global Marketing Director of Consumer Electronics at Momentive.

“We are pleased to offer a comprehensive range of thermal management solutions to help manufacturers increase the performance and longevity of their products.”

Solar, infrared and LED experts discuss advances in photonic materials and devices

BOLINGBROOK, USA: On July 12-13, 2010, experts from across the solar photovoltaics, infrared (IR) photovoltaics and light emitting diode (LED) disciplines met to review and discuss recent progress and future trends in the rapidly advancing fields of photonic materials and devices at the 2010 International Symposium on Optoelectronic Materials and Devices.

The symposium was jointly organized by the Quantum-functional Semiconductor Research Center of Dongguk University, the Microphysics Laboratory of the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and Sivananthan Laboratories Inc. It was held and successfully concluded at the Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile Hotel in Chicago.

Leading scientists from various government agencies, universities and industry presented recent advances on solar cells, IR devices and LEDs including but not limited to thin film solar cells, very high efficiency tandem solar cells, heteroepitaxial growth, antimonide- and HgCdTe-based infrared sensors and ZnO nanorods. The symposium featured two plenary speakers, Dr. Martha Symko Davies of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Mr. Minh Le of the Solar Energy Technologies Program at the U.S. Department of Energy.

“The year’s symposium was 7th in the series and the second consecutive symposium held in Chicago,” said Yesim Anter, Project Coordinator of the Microphysics Laboratory. Ms. Anter added “The goal of this symposium was to bring together a small group of distinguished members of the optoelectronic materials society to interact with each other and listen to the exciting developments in their respective fields first hand. Furthermore, the symposium provided a great opportunity for many students and faculty to do networking with these renowned speakers.”

Dr. Chris Grein, Professor of Physics and Director of Graduate Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago, said that “The fields of solar and infrared photovoltaics and light emitting diodes have many common technical elements yet few conferences bring together experts from all three. One of the goals of the symposium was to facilitate the cross-pollination of many ideas that will benefit these technologies.”

Dr. Timothy Coutts, Advisor and Senior Scientist at EPIR Technologies Inc, NREL Fellow Emeritus and founder of the Device Development Group at NREL, stated: “This year’s International Symposium on Optoelectronic Materials and Devices brought together a wonderful group of researchers from the solar, IR, and LED industries. The symposium attendants exchanged ideas that will potentially result in creative new approaches for advancing the state of these technologies.”

Dr. Tae Won Kang, director of Quantum-functional Semiconductor Research Center at Dongguk University in Seoul, S. Korea, stated that he is “pleased to see the continued collaboration between the two research centers, the Quantum-functional Semiconductor Research Center (QSRC) at Dongguk University and the Microphysics Laboratory (MPL) at the University of Illinois at Chicago, which helped organize the symposium series for more than 8 years.” Dr. Kang added that he plans to organize the symposium next year in Seoul, S. Korea.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Weidmüller BLF series connectors in stock at Digi-Key

THIEF RIVER FALLS, USA: Electronic components distributor Digi-Key Corp. announced it has stock on Weidmüller’s BLF Series Pluggable PCB Connectors, available in 5.00mm and 5.08mm pitches.

These push-in connectors are available for purchase on Digi-Key’s global websites and will be featured in future print and online catalogs.

One feature of the BLF Series of Pluggable PCB Connectors is the fast push-in connection technology for a tool-less connection when inserting a prepared conductor into the wire entry slot. The BLF series features different wire outlet directions from 90º to 180º to 270º. Additionally, the connectors come with twin plugs with integrated, high-performance cross-connections that enable bus applications with an exceeding bus current up to 22 Amps (A).

These connectors are designed for general use and easy testing. Each connector includes a large clamping area of 0.2 to 2.5mm2 to accommodate wire ferrules with plastic collars and meet minimum creepage requirements. Additionally, diagnostic test points are easily accessible with convenient test plug sockets to simplify function monitoring and allow for fast manual diagnosis for troubleshooting.

Rounded molding shapes and large, slip-resistant actuation buttons ensure user-friendly handling. These connectors are UL rated for 300V, 20A with wire sizes of 26-12 AWG.

“The unique design of the Weidmüller BLF series offers many benefits for customers in need of a quick, secure connection,” said Jeff Shafer, Digi-Key’s vice president of interconnect, passive, and electromechanical product. “The tool-free push-in connection reduces production costs by saving time, and the test points provide easy access when trouble-shooting errors.”

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Shanghai Epilight selects Veeco’s MOCVD systems for LED manufacturing capacity ramp

PLAINVIEW, USA: Veeco Instruments Inc. announced that during the recently completed second quarter, Shanghai Epilight Technology Company Ltd., one of the largest LED manufacturers in China, placed a multi-tool order for Veeco TurboDisc K465i Metal Organic Chemical Vapor Deposition (MOCVD) systems. The equipment is for Epilight’s planned capacity expansion at their Shanghai high-brightness light emitting diode (HB-LED) fab.

Wendi Liu, president of Epilight, said: “We selected Veeco’s K465i MOCVD system because of its excellent system design and the good performance in the field. It is simply the best choice for high-volume production of LEDs. Given the increased demand for LEDs in such applications as general illumination, TV backlight and outdoor displays, we intend to ramp our production quickly. With a business partner like Veeco, we are confident we can meet the market demand.”

Bill Miller, executive VP, GM of Veeco's MOCVD Operations, commented: “We are gratified to have the opportunity to work with Epilight as their MOCVD supplier for their LED production facility ramp. We believe that the China market will drive significant advancement of the LED industry, and Veeco, as the market-leading equipment provider in China, is well positioned to benefit from this growth.”

Dow Electronic Materials inaugurates new facility to serve fast growing OLED market

PHILADELPHIA, USA & SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA: Dow Electronic Materials, a business unit of Dow Advanced Materials, held an opening ceremony to inaugurate its new OLED Electronic Materials facility in Cheonan, Korea.

The facility will supply leading-edge emissive materials to serve the rapidly growing active matrix OLED market. The opening ceremony was held at the Cheonan, Korea manufacturing facility and was attended by Jerome A. Peribere, president and CEO of Dow Advanced Materials, and regional government officials from South Chungchong Province and Cheonan City.

Dow’s new OLED production facility is located in the Cheonan Industrial Cluster for Foreign Investors. The new manufacturing facility, which began operation in December 2009, produces leading-edge emissive materials that provide the brilliant color for OLED displays.

“Dow’s new OLED manufacturing facility provides a strong foundation for Dow to meet the demands of this emerging market, particularly in Korea and East Asia,” said Dominic Yang, Group VP, Dow Electronic Materials. “The new OLED facility reinforces Dow’s business leadership in the display technology market and complements well our recently announced plans to build a new R&D center, and trimethyl gallium plant in Korea.”

Dow has invested more than $300 million in the Korean electronic materials industry over the last 10 years, including the recently announced expansion of manufacturing capacity for TMG (trimethyl gallium), which is core material for LED production, and The Dow Seoul Technology Center in Hwaseong, Gyeonggi Province, which will focus on technologies for flat panel displays and semiconductors.

The Cheonan facility also includes manufacturing operations for Dow’s semiconductor technologies business.

Digi-Key, Panasonic Electric Works expand distribution agreement to include Apac territories

THIEF RIVER FALLS, USA: Electronic components distributor Digi-Key Corporation, recognized by design engineers as having the industry's broadest selection of electronic components available for immediate shipment, has signed an expanded distribution agreement with Panasonic Electric Works Corp. of America, a market leader in electromechanical and solid-state relays.

The expanded agreement will allow Digi-Key to distribute Panasonic Electric Works products in the Asia-Pacific territories, in addition to the existing franchises for the Americas, Japan, Hong Kong, China and Taiwan.

Among the more than 1,400 Panasonic Electric Works products stocked by Digi-Key are connectors, relays, sensors, and switches. These products are available on Digi-Key’s global websites and are featured in its print and online catalogs.

“We are very pleased to extend our relationship with Panasonic Electric Works to the Asia-Pacific territories,” said Jeff Shafer, Digi-Key’s vice president of interconnect, electromechanical, and passive product. “We are confident customers will benefit as we add quality products from Panasonic Electric Works to our offering for these territories.”

“Digi-Key is an important partner in our sales network, giving design engineers easy access to Panasonic components,” according to Steve Cummins, PEWA General Manager, Marketing. “We are excited to extend this availability to a broader design community throughout Asia.”

Mitsubishi Electric to launch GaN HEMTs for L to C band amplifiers

TOKYO, JAPAN: Mitsubishi Electric Corp. has developed three models of gallium nitride (GaN) high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs) with 10W, 20W and 40W outputs.

The three models are for L to C band (0.5~6 GHz) amplifiers, which are incorporated into base stations for mobile phones, very small aperture terminals and other transmission equipment. Sample shipments will begin from August 2010.

For microwave transmitters, gallium arsenide (GaAs) power amplifiers are most commonly used, but gallium nitride is now garnering more attention, owing to its high breakdown voltage and high saturated electron speed.

In March 2010, Mitsubishi Electric became the first company in the world to manufacture GaN HEMTs, launching four models for C-band space applications. HEMTs that use GaN have higher power density, which helps save energy and contributes to making transmitters more compact and lightweight, and expanded operating life.

Flexible OLEDs make possible variety of apps

USA: In recent years Organic Light Emitting Diodes or OLEDs have made considerable waves in the lighting market.

Basically, an OLED is a self-illuminating solid-state device composed of thin films of organic molecules or polymers which are stacked between conductors. A major draw is their thinness, which can be between 100 to 500 nanometers thick or about 200 times smaller than a human hair. This feature provides an exciting possibility for flexible OLED applications.

Potentially, foldable OLED displays could be attached to fabrics to create electronic "smart" clothing. One example would be outdoor survival clothing with an integrated computer chip, cell phone, GPS receiver and OLED display sewn right into it.

Another application would be in flexible e-paper, which would mimic the look and feel of a newspaper page. Once commercialized, the technology would slim down bulky daily newspapers and hopefully save tons of paper, wastewater and carbon emissions. Korea’s LG already announced its own e-paper prototype early in 2010, with more on the horizon.

However, the key road block is actually finding a commercially viable method of manufacturing. Samsung announced its initial version of the technology in 2008, it achieved this through use of a technique that coats the panel with a flexible membrane through use of an ion gun, ejecting microscopic amounts of itself into a thermodynamically unbalanced cloud of atoms. These then cling to and form a film on anything else in the vacuum chamber. While, innovative, this process was difficult to implement on any scale.

Sony then released its own version of the ultra-thin flexible OLED with a different process in May 2010. Sony’s new screen contains innovative organic thin-film transistors that are used to make the driver circuitry to run the display. These transistors are capable of being produced directly onto a flexible substrate, eliminating the need for the rigid driver chips that would prevent the screen from being bent. Sony’s new prototype is so flexible that it could even be wrapped around a pencil.

Other methods, including more "traditional" processes such as vacuum thermal evaporation, are also being developed for widespread use. This all equates to a rapidly emerging potential for mass production. Even then, commercial electronics with flexible OLED displays are still a few years away. Also, the first commercial flexible OLED displays would most likely be between only 4 to 6 inches in size, with those exceeding 10 inches coming much further along.

However, the market and technology potential for a whole slew of new OLED applications is certainly here and extremely exciting. Today, OLED displays both rigid and flexible continue to grow strongly with display shipments expected to reach 130 million units this year, up from 97 million units last year. The market value is expected to reach $1.4 billion and grow to well over $6 billion by 2015.

Worldwide OLED Display Market Forecast (Revenue, Units, and ASPs)Databeans Estimates, July 2010.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Exar and Arrow Electronics sign European distribution agreement

FREMONT, USA: Exar Corp. has signed a pan-European distribution agreement with Arrow Electronics, a leading worldwide distributor of electronic components and solutions.

Arrow Electronics will distribute Exar's entire product portfolio consisting of solutions from the Datacom and Storage, Power, Communications, and Interface product lines. Arrow Electronics will support a wide range of Exar's products, such as transceivers and UARTs; a variety of power management ICs, including boost and buck regulators, charge pumps, LED drivers, LDO regulators, and programmable power solutions.

In addition to power and interface products, Arrow will distribute communications products supporting SDH, PDH, and OTN data transmission speeds for the networking equipment infrastructure, as well as Datacom and Storage semiconductors and board-level systems including applied service processors, express cards and 10G Ethernet cards.

"We are delighted that our European customers will now benefit from Exar's world-class product portfolio," said Massimo Dall'Occo, vice president of marketing and engineering for Arrow's Embedded and Design Solutions in Europe, Middle East and Africa. "The broad and value-rich products fit into our strategy to provide total solutions across all industry segments."

Known for its broad-based product line, and customer service, Arrow offers customers the most innovative products and latest technologies for their new design projects.

Cree extends LED market leadership with industry’s most color-consistent LEDs

DURHAM, USA: Cree Inc. is taking another leadership position in the LED industry with the addition of the industry’s smallest warm and neutral bins to its award-winning multichip XLamp MP-L and MC-E EasyWhite LEDs.

This breakthrough offers a single two-step MacAdams ellipse bin per color temperature, optimized to achieve incandescent-like color consistency and eliminating the need to purchase multiple small bins and perform complex color mixing.

“This innovation gives the lighting community a simple solution to a previously challenging issue — combining-lighting class LED efficacy with traditional incandescent color consistency,” said Paul Thieken, Cree, director of marketing, LED components.

“Providing our customers with Cree’s EasyWhite technology in smaller, single bins can lower their cost and potentially speed time-to-market, furthering the LED Lighting Revolution to obsolete energy-inefficient lighting.”

EasyWhite binning is a unique feature of Cree lighting-class multi-chip LED components that enables customers to specify a color temperature and lumen output, simplifying LED system design and improving LED-to-LED color consistency.

Each bin, at the intersection of the black body locus and standard warm/neutral CCT points, is 94 percent smaller than the respective ANSI C78.377 quadrangle and 75 percent smaller than current Cree EasyWhite bins.

XLamp MP-L and MC-E LEDs with EasyWhite 2-step bins are offered in 2700 K, 3000 K, 3500 K, and 4000 K and are now available in sample and production quantities with standard lead times.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

ADA awarded $70K contract for Li-ion battery research

DENVER, USA: ADA Technologies, Inc. received a $70,000 contract from the US Army to conduct research to further the development of advanced Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries for military applications.

Specifically, ADA will assess the ability of several emerging battery nanomaterial technologies to strengthen Li-ion battery energy and power densities, broaden operational temperature ranges, improve safety during operation, and improve cycle life and storage life.

The six-month contract will utilize ADA’s expertise in nanocomposite electrode technologies to develop advanced anode and cathode materials.

“Lightweight Li-ion batteries hold promise as the best replacement for previous-generation alkaline and carbon-zinc batteries, however, there is continued demand for improvements to Li-ion batteries as they currently exist,” said Wen Lu, Ph.D., ADA Energy Storage team leader.

Today's military equipment is increasingly reliant on powerful and sophisticated electronic components that require a wide range of batteries that are capable of providing high energy and power per unit mass and volume, operation in a wide range of temperatures, long storage life and safety.

This Army contract will leverage the results of a recently completed Department of Energy contract titled “Nanostructured High Voltage Cathode Materials for Advanced Lithium-ion Batteries.” The contract was awarded to ADA by the Department of Energy in July 2009.

ADA’s advanced energy storage research program began in 2005 and to date has received nearly $2 million in research and early stage product development funding.

Antennagate-type problems could increase with 4G wireless

VIERA, USA: SkyCross, a global designer and manufacturer of antenna solutions, today urged mobile device manufacturers and consumers to take a time out from the “Antennagate” controversy to review radio-frequency (RF) issues and their effect on smartphone performance. As the wireless industry transitions to 4G technology, antenna issues will become more significant since multifunction smartphones require multiple antennas for full broadband connectivity.

SkyCross specializes in optimizing wireless connectivity in consumer electronics devices. Over the past 10 years, SkyCross has built a commercial knowledge base and an extensive portfolio of patented antenna designs and techniques for the mobile device, notebook, access point, and consumer device markets.

SkyCross iMAT is a technology for super fast broadband networks that enables a single device antenna to deliver the performance benefits of multiple antennas without creating interference issues. Last year the company shipped more than 100 million antennas to device manufacturers worldwide.

“It’s true that antennas in smartphones and other handheld wireless devices are affected by the way in which the user holds the device,” said Charles A. Riggle, SkyCross Vice President of Marketing and Business Development. Antennas on the Apple iPhone4 are exposed to the user’s touch, and the so-called “hand effect” is magnified due to the conductive nature of human skin on these metal antenna elements.

“Apple is a premier design innovator, but more extensive device tests are often necessary to observe these behaviors and identify a remedy before launching a product,” he said. “Frequently, it works better if the OEM can focus on the coolness of the design and the rich feature content and leave wireless performance to those whose sole focus is RF. This puts functional expertise where it is best carried out on both sides of the product solution.”

A non-conductive coating could have been applied on the metal ring around the iPhone4 to protect the exposed antennas from unintended signal attenuation when the user’s hand crosses the so-called “antenna gap.”

Alternatively, after the phone was manufactured, a low-cost, one-inch “bandage” could have covered up the gap, making bumpers unnecessary. Since every single phone model is different, hand effect must be minimized through an iterative design process of moving and adjusting the antenna structure until the device meets mobile operator and regulatory performance goals established for that particular device in multiple usage cases.

“In antenna design, there is an age-old conflict in the compromise between form and function,” Riggle explained. “Antenna engineers are constantly challenged to do more with less and develop new ways of incorporating radiating structures into phones in the smallest space possible while still meeting mobile operator radiated-performance tests and adhering to mandatory RF regulatory requirements.”

Designing antennas for today’s complex multi-band smartphones is both an art and a science. Antenna designers must balance the technical challenge of designing antenna elements that are effective radiators of the signals transmitted and received in as many as 10 operating frequency bands with the mechanical challenge of placing these antenna elements into a device that fits in a consumer’s pocket, is mostly a metal and glass screen, and also has cameras, speakers, a keyboard, and a big battery.

On the technical side, the antenna must be large enough to efficiently transmit radio signals without reflecting RF energy back into the transceiver as heat, which wastes battery power.

The antenna must radiate those signals on channels as low as 700MHz where the wavelength of the transmitted signal may actually be larger than the phone itself, and as high as 5GHz where the signal propagates a significantly lesser distance per unit of power output.

On the mechanical side, the antenna must be small enough to allow sleek, thin, and compact phone designs. It must also be located within the device to maximize its ability to get signals into and out of the phone without exceeding government power and RF exposure limits. Also, antennas must be designed not to create interference or be affected by nearby objects such as transceiver modules, speakers and digital cameras.

“Apple’s genius was in utilizing a major mechanical design element as the device antenna,” Riggle continued. “With the metal ring around the perimeter of the iPhone4 for the main radiating elements of the antenna, Apple eliminated the need to reserve dedicated volume within the phone for these antennas. That made the device more compact, allowed the screen to occupy as much of the front surface as possible, and enabled use of a larger battery to increase usage time between charges.

“Since the phone must operate on numerous frequency bands, multiple antenna elements were incorporated into the metal ring with small gaps between major radiating structures. These gaps caused problems.”

“Apple’s problem spotlights how important the design of antennas can be,” Riggle said. “After all, antennas are the only parts of a device that touch the mobile network and are crucial for the reliable high-speed connectivity demanded by subscribers of today’s 3G and 4G wireless networks.”

TAOS, QuickLogic to deliver TV-quality viewing and long battery life to mobile devices

PLANO & SUNNYVALE, USA: Texas Advanced Optoelectronic Solutions Inc. (TAOS) and QuickLogic Corp. announced that QuickLogic has verified and approved the TAOS TSL25711FN digital ambient light sensor (ALS) for use with QuickLogic’s Visual Enhancement Engine (VEE) and Display Power Optimizer (DPO) Proven System Blocks (PSBs).

When used in conjunction with the TSL25711FN, the VEE and DPO provide mobile device users with an exceptional viewing experience in all ambient lighting conditions, while simultaneously extending battery life.

QuickLogic’s proprietary VEE and DPO PSBs enhance both the image and video quality of mobile devices by optimizing the dynamic range, contrast and color saturation on a pixel-by-pixel basis to provide a natural viewing experience to the user under varying lighting conditions.

VEE is based on a model of human perception, resulting in a displayed image that retains excellent detail, color and vitality to the eye even under challenging viewing conditions. QuickLogic’s DPO technology dynamically adjusts display power or brightness to conserve battery life.

TAOS's digital ambient light sensors are used to provide detailed information on the ambient light conditions that users face as they interact with their Smartphones, Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs), Smartbooks, Netbooks, notebooks/laptops, digital cameras, camcorders, portable MP3/DVD players, video games and HDTVs.

The TSL25711FN is part of the TAOS TSL2x71 product family which includes ambient light sensing, proximity detection and integrated ambient light sensing/proximity detection devices. The high sensitivity of the TAOS TSL25711FN enables use behind dark glass or spectrally distorted materials for improved display aesthetics and sleeker designs versus other solutions that require transparent openings in order for light to reach the sensor.

Used in conjunction with QuickLogic’s DPO PSB, the TAOS ambient light sensor is a key component in reducing system power consumption.

“The combination of the TAOS digital ambient light sensing technology with QuickLogic’s VEE and DPO-enabled Customer Specific Standard Products (CSSPs) provides a significantly improved viewing experience along with a dramatically increased battery life for the mobile device user,” said Paul Karazuba, QuickLogic’s Senior Product Marketing Manager.

“TAOS is pleased to be part of the QuickLogic ecosystem by bringing our respective ‘green’ display technologies together around the VEE and DPO PSBs,” said Jerry Koontz, TAOS Inc. Director of Marketing. “Consumers will immediately appreciate the significant benefits that the combined technologies from QuickLogic and TAOS bring to future mobile devices.”

Silicon Labs, Digi-Key to deliver the only high-performance programmable oscillators with 24-hour lead times

AUSTIN & THIEF RIVER FALLS, USA: Silicon Laboratories Inc. and electronic components distributor Digi-Key Corp. have announced the industry’s first high-performance programmable oscillators (XOs) available with 24-hour lead times.

Silicon Labs’ Si500 and Si590 low jitter oscillators support frequencies up to 525MHz with either single ended or differential output formats while eliminating the long lead times typical of traditional oscillators.

Silicon Labs’ Si590/591 crystal oscillators provide low jitter clock generation and support any frequency from 10 to 525MHz, any format (CMOS, LVDS, LVPECL, CML), and any supply voltage (1.8, 2.5, or 3.3V), with guaranteed low jitter of 1 ps rms (max).

The Si590/591 devices also offer +/-50ppm stability across all operating conditions, including the -40ºC to +85ºC industrial temperature range and with 15 years of aging.

Digi-Key’s on-site digital programming simplifies procurement of standard and custom frequencies, eliminating non-recurring expense (NRE) charges and minimum order quantities typically required for custom-frequency XOs. This results in lower development and initial production costs.

Silicon Labs’ Si500 provides a low cost alternative to quartz based oscillators, by using an ultra-low phase noise all-silicon oscillator to generate any output frequency from 0.9 to 200MHz.

The Si500 is the first programmable silicon oscillator in the industry to support differential clock outputs (LVPECL, LVDS, HCSL) in addition to CMOS format, providing customers added design flexibility and improved signal integrity. The devices can be programmed on-site by Digi-Key and therefore can be customized and shipped immediately while offering higher performance and reliability.

“Fast, efficient delivery of oscillators has been a wrench in the works of the supply chain for decades,” said Mike Petrowski, general manager of timing products at Silicon Labs. “By partnering with Digi-Key to enable 24-hour lead times for high performance programmable devices, we are able to offer customers a path to better system optimization, lower cost and faster time to market.”

“Because of Digi-Key’s commitment to providing the best service possible and our strong partnership with Silicon Labs, our customers will experience the benefits of 24-hour lead times for the Si500 and Si590/591 products. Digi-Key can program and ship these oscillators within 24 hours of order receipt for delivery within 24-72 hours, depending on the delivery location,” said Dave Doherty, Digi-Key’s vice president of semiconductor product.

“We are pleased to offer this industry-first to the thousands of design engineers who rely on Digi-Key to provide them with the latest and most innovative products for their designs.”

Key component shortages limiting growth of LED backlight units for LCD TVs

SANTA CLARA, USA: The LED backlight unit has emerged as a key factor in the TFT LCD industry, and is expected to maintain its growth momentum for the next several years.

According to the latest DisplaySearch Quarterly LED Backlight Report, LED backlight shipments will pass those of CCFL backlights in all large-area TFT LCD panels and achieve 80 percent penetration in Q4’12.

Fig. 1: LED Backlight Unit Penetration Rate in 10”+ TFT LCDsSource: Q2’10 Quarterly LED Backlight Report

There is no doubt that LED will be the mainstream light source in all LCD applications due to slim design, low power consumption and the fact that it enables high display performance. This represents an opportunity for display materials suppliers. For example, optical polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) used in light guide plates, white polyester (PET) for reflector film, and sapphire for LED wafer substrates.

However, LCD makers have been suffering from key component shortages related to LED backlights in Q1’10. PMMA shortages have limited production of TV light guide plates. Many reflector film suppliers were stretched between demand from LCD and solar cell applications. In addition, many LED makers faced a sapphire substrate shortage.

“Many LCD makers didn’t recognize the limited capacities of key material suppliers before fixing their LED TV panel shipment targets. In particular, PMMA and PET are in significant shortage. PMMA and PET suppliers are slowly expanding capacity since they need time to add new plants and face financial limitations,” said Kevin Kwak, DisplaySearch Research Director.

Fig. 2: Global PET Supply/Demand ForecastSource: Q2’10 Quarterly LED Backlight Report

How can supply chain participants address component shortages? In the case of LEDs, multi-vendor LED qualification and improved LED BLU design minimizing the number of chips can both help. Also, joint investments between LCD makers and PMMA suppliers can be a solution for securing light guide plate material.

“To expand the LED-backlit LCD TV business successfully, LCD TV panel or TV set makers need to consider product competitiveness, including effective procurement, design innovation, cell business models, and sales strategies because many consumers feel the price of LED-backlit LCD TV sets are still too high,” noted Kwak.

Hella intros new line of 'green' LED streetlight products

PLYMOUTH, USA: Hella, a major automotive lighting and electronics supplier, is introducing a new line of energy-efficient LED street and area-lighting products designed to replace conventional lighting on streets, parking lots and commercial property throughout North America.

Based on more than 20 years of LED development and manufacturing experience, Hella has developed a unique "retrofit" module to replace conventional lamps on existing installations, as well as high-power LED modules for new installations.

The company’s new Eco StreetLine lamps offer significant energy and maintenance savings compared to conventional street lights, according to Steve Lietaert, industrial product group director at Hella Electronics in Plymouth, Michigan.

Lietaert said that the company is launching its new LED product line this month with an installation program in Flora, Illinois.

"We expect to finalize a number of additional projects in Michigan and Illinois within the next several months," Lietaert added. "We're actively discussing retrofit programs with other cities, major power companies and several automakers."

The company's retrofit system simplifies the conversion process from conventional to LED street lighting. The 48-LED light module consumes 75 Watts while producing nearly 5900 Lumens. Hella’s new LED products will be assembled at a Hella plant in Flora.

"Hella's new industrial lighting program will benefit Flora and the State of Illinois in a number of ways," said David Thompson, Flora’s city administrator. "More energy-efficient street lighting not only will have a positive impact on our city's annual budget, but also will support our commitment to improving the environment."

Dr. Martin Fischer, president of Hella Electronics Corporation and the Hella Corporate Center USA, noted that Hella has extensive automotive and industrial LED-lighting experience. Since 1992, the company has sold more than 20 million automotive LED lamps, including more than five million last year alone.

A leader in converting municipal and industrial lighting systems in Europe, Hella recently completed Germany's largest municipal LED replacement project, helping the City of Lippstadt cut energy consumption for lighting by 70 percent. A similar conversion project at EADS (European Aeronautic and Defense Space Co.), the largest industrial program of its kind in Germany, reduced that company's energy costs by 68 percent.

"Hella lighting customers benefit from our thermal management experience, optical simulation-and-design capability and in-house product-development expertise," Fischer said. "We also guarantee the long-term availability of replacement parts."

State and local governments, as well as private businesses, are taking advantage of federal incentive programs to replace conventional street lights with 'green' LED lighting that is more energy efficient, requires less maintenance and lasts longer. LED lighting also is expected to reduce demand on the nation's electric-power grids, a key federal objective.

Single 1500-mA LED flash driver improves picture quality for camera-enabled cell phones

NORWOOD, USA: Analog Devices Inc. (ADI) has introduced the ADP1650 1500-mA white LED driver – the latest addition to ADI’s power management portfolio and its inductive-based flash driver class of devices.

The ADP1650 provides excellent flexibility with features like a programmable I²C-compatible interface, programmable torch and flash currents for one LED up to 1500 mA, two independent TxMASK1 inputs and a 4-bit ADC.

The new LED driver also provides high efficiency at 85 percent at the typical battery voltage (90 percent peak) which reduces high levels of input battery current during flash and limits battery current drain in torch mode. The ultra-compact ADP1650 measures only 2x1.5mm in a 12-ball WLCSP package and reduces PCB (printed circuit board) requirements.

“Camera quality is one of the most important features for consumers when selecting a handset, and since many camera phone images are taken spontaneously and in dimly lit areas or while talking on the phone, a quality flash is expected,” said Jose Rodriguez, technical director, Power Management Technology Group, Analog Devices.

The ADP1650 enables a complete high power flash design in less than 17 mm2 by integrating a programmable 1.5-MHz or 3.0-MHz synchronous inductive boost converter, a tiny, 1-mm high, low-cost, 1-μH power inductor, and an 0603 case-size input and output capacitor.

The new LED driver operates efficiently over the entire battery voltage range by maximizing the input-power-to-LED-power conversion and minimizing battery current draw during flash events. Designed to operate using the limited battery current available for flash, the ADP1650 connects easily to the latest image sensors and image processors to provide excellent picture quality in low ambient light environments.

Rodriguez added: “Maximizing light output for limited battery current and a shrinking PCB area is a key design challenge for portable device designers. The ADP1650 white LED driver meets this challenge.”

Analog Devices expands range of versatile, synchronous buck controllers

NORWOOD, USA: Analog Devices Inc. (ADI) has introduced two current-mode, synchronous buck controllers that support input-power voltages ranging from 2.75 V to 20 V. The ADP1882 and ADP1883 synchronous buck controllers provide superior transient response through the use of a constant on-time, valley-current-mode control system.

In addition, the valley-current-mode control architecture allows the ADP1882 and ADP1883 to offer optimum performance at low duty cycles and drive all N-channel power stages to regulate output voltages as low as 0.8 V with ±1.0 percent accuracy to as high as 7 V with output up to 15 amps. These new and versatile devices are well suited to intermediate rail or point-of-load generation in consumer, industrial instrumentation, telecommunications, and networking applications.

“The new ADP1882 and ADP1883 buck controllers offer enhanced performance at low duty cycles by using a valley-current-mode control architecture,” said Laurence McGarry, marketing manager, Power Management Products Group. “Each is available in three frequency options: 300 kHz, 600 kHz, and 1 MHz. The ADP1883 offers an additional power saving mode capable of pulse skipping to maintain output regulation while improving system efficiency at light loads.”

ADP1882 and ADP1883 synchronous buck controller features and benefits
* An internally-fixed, soft-start period enables a limited input in-rush current from the input supply during startup.
* Reverse current protection during soft-start provides a pre-charged output.
* Constant on-time architecture enables fast transient response.
* A current-sense resistor is not required allowing improved system efficiency and ease-of-use.
* Thermal overload and short circuit protection allows for a more robust system design.

The introduction of the ADP1882 and ADP1883 devices marks ADI’s continued expansion of the switching controller and regulator product families – following recent announcements of the ADP1870/ADP1871 and ADP1872/ADP1873 constant on-time, synchronous buck controllers and the ADP1877 fixed-frequency, dual buck controller.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Supertex intros two AEC-Q100 compliant LED drivers for automotive solid-state lighting apps

SUNNYVALE, USA: Supertex Inc. has introduced the AT9917 and the AT9932, LED lamp driver integrated circuits (ICs), designed specifically for solid-state lighting applications in automobiles, such as head lights, tail lights, indicator lights, dome lights, and panel backlights. These ICs feature technology that is ideal for automotive applications.

The AT9917 uses a peak current mode control scheme to drive single switch converters and includes an internal transconductance amplifier to accurately control output current to the LEDs. It also includes a fault output using an external FET, to disconnect the LED string during erroneous conditions, such as an alternator load dump.

The AT9932 features a unique feed forward current control scheme, which achieves very low susceptibility to input voltage transients, making it indispensable for automotive LED lighting applications. The IC can maintain constant output current even under vigorous input transient conditions. Its output current control loop is inherently stable and can be compensated using a single capacitor with the appropriate damping at the coupling capacitor.

"By integrating features which allow use during input voltage transients caused by events such as cold crank conditions, the AT9917 and the AT9932 prove themselves to meet the rigorous requirements for automotive solid-state lighting applications," states Hernan DeGuzman, Vice President of Marketing for Supertex. "These robust driver ICs allow automobile manufacturers to realize the numerous benefits of using LEDs in solid-state lighting for their applications."

The AT9917 and AT9932 are available in 24 lead TSSOP packages (AT9917TS-G & AT9932TS-G). The parts are RoHS compliant. Samples are available from stock. Pricing is $2.05 each for the AT9917TS-G and $2.23 each for the AT9932TS-G, both in 1K quantities.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Crystal IS announces world’s best-performing UV LEDs for clean water

GREEN ISLAND, USA: Crystal IS Inc., a leading developer of ultraviolet light emitting diodes (UVC LEDs), has revealed devices demonstrating world record efficiency, power and lifetime at the optimal germicidal wavelength, 250nm.

In recently-published testing results, Crystal IS demonstrated for the first time that its energy-efficient LEDs have the performance necessary to replace widely-used mercury-based disinfection lamps. The unique diodes are fabricated on a proprietary Aluminum Nitride (AlN) substrate.

“Previous efforts to develop practical LEDs at this wavelength have proven to be very difficult,” said Crystal IS CTO Leo Schowalter. “Most workers in the field have used conventional substrates, such as sapphire as the starting material, and have struggled to produce commercially viable lifetime and power results. We are demonstrating that we have overcome many of those issues.”

The UVC LEDs developed by Crystal IS operate at the optimal germicidal wavelength, and their proven efficacy, coupled with low power requirements, small size, and longer lifespan, make the diodes ideal for use in water and air sterilization products.

Initial applications will include residential and office point-of-use systems such as water coolers and counter-top systems providing cleantech alternatives to bottled water. The technology roadmap also includes large-scale applications in industrial and municipal purification, where long-lasting, energy-efficient LEDs are ideal replacements for existing mercury-based light sources.

“We are now moving into our next stage of evolution as we shift our focus from research orientation to technology improvement and commercialization,” said Dr. Steven Berger, CEO. “We are expanding our investor and partner base to take a prime position in this emerging market.”

Friday, July 16, 2010

IR intros SOT-23 power MOSFET family from -30V to 100V

EL SEGUNDO, USA: International Rectifier (IR) has introduced a family of HEXFET power MOSFETs featuring ultra-low on-state resistance (RDS(on)) in an industry-standard SOT-23 package for applications including battery charge and discharge switches, system and load switches, light load motor drives, and telecom equipment.

Utilizing IR’s latest mid-voltage silicon technology, the new SOT-23 MOSFET devices deliver a strong improvement in current handling by minimizing RDS(on) by as much as 90 percent to offer customers optimized performance and price for a given application.

“The new SOT-23 MOSFET family covers the full range of voltages from -30V to 100V with different levels of RDS(on) and gate charge (Qg) to provide an improved and broader range of design options for customers looking for a compact, efficient and cost-effective solution,” said George Feng, marketing engineer, IR’s Power Management Devices Business Unit.

Qualified to moisture sensitivity level 1 (MSL1), the devices are offered lead free and are RoHS compliant.

IXYS launches new PolarP2 power MOSFET family

MILPITAS, USA & BIEL, SWITZERLAND: IXYS Corp. has released its new PolarP2 Power MOSFET family, IXYS’ latest generation of fast and rugged Polar-Series Power MOSFETs.

These new 500V devices are manufactured using IXYS’ proprietary PolarP2TM Technology Platform, yielding a new class of devices that feature an optimized combination of low on-state resistance and gate charge, delivering a FOM (Figure of Merit: Rdson x Qg) as low as 12Ohm/nanocoulombs.

The superior performance and energy savings of these devices enable the development of more efficient power subsystems in applications such as high frequency inverters in power conversion and solar energy generation.

These devices are also ideal for switch/resonant-mode power supplies and UPS’s for telecom, base stations, servers and server farms and energy efficient consumer appliances. Other applications that will benefit from these new devices include power factor correction circuits, motor drives, lamp ballasts, laser drivers, DC-DC converters, robotics and servo control.

The newly introduced PolarP2 Power MOSFET Family consist of two subclasses, presenting end-customers greater system design flexibility and the opportunity to select a device with the best combination of performance and cost. These subclasses include the cost-effective PolarP2 Standard and the high-performance PolarP2 HiPerFET.

PolarP2 Standard versions are available with drain current ratings of 16, 25, 42, and 52 Amperes. They feature an excellent performance per price ratio presenting designers with a cost-effective solution to load switching designs. These new standard versions demonstrate up to a 20 percent reduction in on-state resistance (Rdson) while maintaining low gate charge (Qg) values compared to previous generations. The avalanche capabilities of these devices add an additional safeguard against over-voltage transients.

PolarP2 HiPerFET versions are offered with drain current ratings of 24, 42, 52, 74, 94 and 120 Amperes. These high-performance versions retain all the features and advantages of the PolarP2 Standard versions with the added benefit of a fast intrinsic rectifier for increased turn-off dV/dt immunity and low reverse recovery speeds (trr of no greater than 250ns).

The featured fast intrinsic body diode properties of these HiPerFET versions play a pivotal role in overall device performance by providing faster transient response, increased power efficiency, improved ruggedness, and higher operating frequencies.

The superior ruggedness and power switching capabilities of these HiPerFET devices make them ideal device selections particularly in popular zero voltage switching (ZVS) topologies where body diode reverse recovery characteristics are critical.

Part number examples from the cost-effective PolarP2 Standard subclass include the IXTH450P2, IXTP450P2, IXTQ450P2, IXTQ460P2, and IXTQ470P2. Part number examples from the high-performance PolarP2 HiPerFETTM subclass include the IXFH42N50P2, IXFT52N50P2, IXFK74N50P2, IXFX94N50P2, and IXFB120N50P2.

Diodes Inc. announces space saving buck converter

DALLAS, USA: Diodes Inc. has introduced the AP5101 buck converter. Operating at a fixed switching frequency of 1.4MHz, this 1.5A rated buck converter enables designers to reduce circuit footprints in a range of products including set top boxes, modems, and distributed power systems.

The reduction in size of the inductor and other standard external components resulting from the higher operating frequency, combined with the converter’s compact SO-8 packaging and integrated low RDSON power MOSFET switch, means significant board space savings can be achieved. Minimized external component count also provides increased flexibility in circuit design.

Characterized by its very low series resistance, the AP5101 delivers a constant output current up to a peak of 1.5A for efficiency as high as 92%, over a wide input supply range of 4.75V to 22V. Fast transient response eases loop stabilization requirements and the output is adjustable from 0.81V to 15V.

The AP5101 is self-protected through cycle-by-cycle current limiting and thermal shut down protection, ensuring long term product reliability. The converter has an enable pin allowing it to be switched off into a standby mode, consuming just 0.1µA.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Pickering Interfaces intros new PXI power supply

CLACTON ON SEA, UK: Pickering Interfaces is expanding its range of PXI power supply products with the introduction of the 41-743.

The 41-743 is a single channel power supply capable of providing 2A at output voltages up to 20V and 0.8A up to 48V. The powers supply includes remote sense connections to allow load sensing at the end of cables.

A voltage monitor and programmable current limit is included and the module supports PXI Triggering as well as external triggering.

Backplane power is derived from the two slots the module occupies to allow the 41-743 to generate the full output capability without the use of an external power source.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

LED industry visibility to extend into Q3 due to TV backlight demand

TAIWAN: According to LEDinside, the research division of Trendforce Corp., the large-size LED backlight demand visibility is expected to extend into Q3. However, as TV sales conventionally enter the down cycle in Q1, the LED backlight orders reflect that the seasonality effect will occur in early Q4. Therefore, whether the LED lighting in Q4 can prop up the market demand will become an important observation focus.

Based on LEDinside’s statistics, listed LED manufacturers in Taiwan generated total revenue of 10.568 billion NTD in June, 9.5 percent up, compared with revenue of 9.65 billion NTD in May and 85.3 percent in annual growth rate. The revenue for LED chip manufacturers in June amounted to 4.62 billion NTD, an 8.1 percent increase compared to that of May. The revenue for LED package manufacturers in June totaled 5.948 billion NTD, which rose 10.6 percent from May.Source: LEDinside.

Compiled by LEDinside, LED index (LEDX) observes the industry through the performance of the LED industry market value. Currently, the total LEDX has slightly rebounded. LED epitaxy index (Chip LEDX) has recovered to 4107 points, while the LED package index (Package LEDX) also climbed up to 5206 points.

Taiwan's overall revenue of chip manufacturers observed in June summed up 4.62 billion NTD, which increased 8.1 percent from May, with a monthly growth rate of 8 percent and yearly growth rate of 84.5 percent. The overall June revenue of downstream package manufacturers has reached 5.943 billion NTD, with a monthly growth rate of 10.5 percent and yearly growth rate of 85.8 percent.

At present, the overall demand for LED is optimistic with orders for large-size LED backlight remaining strong. Since many package manufacturers sent large-sized backlight LED samples to their clients for certification in 1H this year,the 5630 type for TV backlight has begun shipment to clients in the 2H10, which will help boost the performance.

Besides the backlight market, the light market demand is also hot because high power LED specifications keep upgrading while the price per lumen maintains downtrend. Moreover, some manufacturers have started to seize the market share with mid- or low-power LED products. Therefore, prices in the LED lighting market begin to ease off when manufacturers continue to expand production in the latter half of the year.Source: LEDinside.

RoHS directive status update

This has been contributed by Gary Nevison, Premier Farnell

The RoHS directive has been under review with extensive discussions between the Council of Ministers and the European Parliament. The Rapporteur of the European Parliament environment committee had proposed that all brominated and chlorinated flame retardants and PVC should be banned by RoHS.

However, due to overwhelming opposition, this has been dropped and replaced by a requirement that the European Commission consider as a high priority whether it is necessary to restrict these substances as well as several others.

Green groups claim that most organobromine and organochlorine compounds are hazardous. When the research data is fully evaluated, there is no evidence of harmful effects for the majority of these substances and only a few have been found to be hazardous and these are already, or soon will be, restricted by European Union (EU) legislation.

However, they are correct when they say that uncontrolled burning of plastics that contain these substances and also PVC can cause the emission of very toxic and carcinogenic dioxins and furans although these substances are also emitted from home refuse burning, metals manufacture and wood preservatives as well as the open burning of waste, typically in developing countries.

Banning these substances in the EU only would have almost no benefit. Firstly, it will be many years before the existing stock of equipment that contains organohalogens reaches end-of-life, secondly, in Asia, most of the e-waste currently being recycled is domestic and so EU legislation would have no effect and thirdly, burning halogen-free plastics on open fires emits different dangerous substances, in particular polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons which are also toxic and carcinogenic.

Some consumer electronics manufacturers have policies of not using halogenated flame retardants or PVC. However, most manufacturers are opposed to banning these substances. The health and environmental benefits of such as ban are uncertain and appear to be limited whereas the cost of substitution would be extremely high.

Many of the possible alternatives have not been tested as extensively as the most common organohalogen flame retardants and PVC and although most are probably safe, this cannot be known with certainty.

There is no doubt that substitutes exist for PVC and for organobromine and organochlorine flame retardants for most but not all applications. However, substitution is often not straightforward as these are seldom drop in replacements.

Plastics will usually need to be completely reformulated and their properties may be different and reliability could be affected in some cases. Substitutes will usually be more expensive - if they were cheaper then manufacturers would already have changed!

It is far from certain that there is a real benefit from not using these substances. It seems likely that it will be the responsibility of the European Commission to answer this question by carrying out an impact assessment to determine whether the very high cost justifies the benefit, whatever these turn out to be from their study.

As the proposal to ban additional substances has been dropped by the European Parliament environment committee (apart from two nanomaterials), there may be enough agreement between the European Parliament and Council of Ministers on the main RoHS issues for them to agree on a recast directive before the end of 2010.

The main changes would include:
Open scope (a Category 11 would capture all EEE not covered in Categories 1 to 10) with the exclusion of transport, large-scale stationary industrial tools, equipment that is part of other equipment that is out of scope and renewable energy technology.

The exclusion of fixed installations is also possible, but there is less agreement on this issue.

Additional substance restrictions, including those on a priority list for review, could be introduced in the future including brominated and chlorinated flame retardants, PVC, arsenic compounds and all the substances on the REACH SVHC Candidate List for authorisation.

Future substance restrictions are likely to be based on processes used under REACH. These would be based on proven risk to health and the environment, rather than the RoHS approach that is based on potential risk without full assessment.

Changes to the exemptions procedure are also likely but exact details are subject to continued negotiation.

The final vote of the full European Parliament is expected in October according to Belgium authorities, who currently own the EU Presidency.

RFMD intros RF5365 WiFi front end module

GREENSBORO, USA: RF Micro Devices Inc., a global leader in the design and manufacture of high-performance radio frequency components and compound semiconductor technologies, has announced availability of the RF5365 WiFi front end module (FEM).

The highly integrated RF5365 FEM satisfies the need for aggressive size reductions for typical 802.11b/g front-end designs and greatly reduces the number of components outside the core chipset.

RFMD's RF5365 FEM integrates a 802.11b/g power amplifier with a single pole three throw (SP3T) switch for 2.4 GHz to 2.5 Ghz ISM band applications.

By integrating SP3T switch functionality, the RF5365 is able to route WLAN and Bluetooth receive/transmit signals to two system-on-chip (SOC) transceivers, accommodating a common implementation in high-performance consumer electronics and handset/handheld WiFi applications. The SP3T switch can also act as a splitter to transmit or receive Bluetooth and WLAN signals simultaneously.

The RF5365's 802.11 b/g power amplifier delivers 18dBm of linear output power for higher efficiency and lower EVM for 11n applications. Additionally, integrated 2170MHz filtering and harmonic attenuation reduce the need for a high loss/attenuation filter at the FEM output, increasing output power at the antenna.

An integrated Rx balun eliminates requirements for tuning components between the FEM and the SoC, and a direct-to-battery connection eliminates the need for additional DC circuitry. Finally, an integrated power detector increases immunity to power supply, temperature and VSWR fluctuations and improves the accuracy of the part's closed loop power control. The RF5365 is fully tested and packaged in a small 2.5 mm x 2.5 mm QFN package.

Infinite Power Solutions and Tokyo Electron Device sign global distribution agreement

LITTLETON, USA: Infinite Power Solutions (IPS), an industry leader in solid-state, thin-film energy storage and energy-harvesting power management products, has announced a global distribution agreement with their first Japanese distributor, Tokyo Electron Device Ltd (TED), a market leading technology trading company that provides customers with electronic components and solutions.

Under the agreement, TED will distribute IPS' award-winning THINERGY Micro-Energy Cell (MEC) and INFINERGY Micro Power Module (MPM) product families in Japan, with limited distribution rights for Korea and Taiwan.

INFINERGY MPMs are miniaturized "plug and play" power modules with integrated power management and solid-state energy storage that simplify the design and adoption of self-powered, microelectronic systems using ambient energy.

The INFINERGY product family integrates IPS' industry-leading THINERGY solid-state MEC devices, which provide unrivaled cycle life and near loss-less energy storage. The MPMs are designed to efficiently store variable AC and DC charge energy from common energy harvesting devices. Because these MPMs provide maintenance-free, autonomous power for decades, they outlive and outperform conventional rechargeable batteries and supercapacitors.

In addition to exploring typical target applications for wireless sensor nodes, TED will work with IPS to penetrate companies whose main focus is the consumer electronics market (Sony, Toshiba, Panasonic, to name a few).

"We are so pleased to announce our distribution plans with Tokyo Electron Device," said David Squires, IPS vice president of strategic marketing. "We recognize that the Japanese market is unique, with a very different supply chain model; we believe our interests will be best served while working with Japanese distributors. The IPS product family is a good fit for the energy conscious and innovative Japanese market, so it's exciting to be opening new markets and meeting with new customers in Japan."

The full line of THINERGY MECs and INFINERGY MPM products will be available for distribution into the Japanese market, as well as the THINERGY Applications Development Platform (ADP) kit.

ilumisys grants IP licenses for LED fluorescent tube replacements

TROY, USA: ilumisys Inc., developer and producer of next-generation solid-state lighting technology, has granted a license for its patents on light-emitting diode (LED) fluorescent tube replacements to ATG Electronics, Diogen Lighting, Hudnut, LEDtronics, LumaSmart and NCS Power Inc.

The ilumisys licensing program allows companies to offer LED fluorescent tube replacement products to the market at a range of price and performance points. By providing licensees access to its expanding patent portfolio, ilumisys believes that both LED product development and installation pace will continue to accelerate.

The licensing agreements provide for royalty payments in exchange for rights to manufacture and sell products covered by Altair Engineering's patent portfolio.

"Our goal with the licensee program is to support the industry by enabling credible LED companies to offer quality, dependable and efficient LED products," said Dave Simon, president of ilumisys. "The program promotes collaboration in the industry and supports a rapidly expanding marketplace."

ilumisys is a spinoff of Altair, a global software and technology company with a growing presence in the energy market. With the backing of Altair, its majority owner, ilumisys has made a deep and substantial investment in research and development that includes more than 50 patent applications filed to date.

Digi-Key announces stock of Cirrus Logic CS4354 stereo DAC

THIEF RIVER FALLS, USA: Electronic components distributor Digi-Key Corp. announced that it has stock of Cirrus Logic’s CS4354 stereo digital-to-analog converter.

This converter and its corresponding CDB4354 evaluation kit are now available for purchase on Digi-Key’s global websites and will be featured in future print and online catalogs.

Cirrus Logic’s CS4354 is its lowest-cost, 24-bit, digital-to-analog converter (DAC) with integrated stereo line drivers. With 40 percent fewer pins and requiring six fewer external capacitors than Cirrus Logic’s third generation DAC, the CS4354 is a smaller and more cost effective DAC solution.

It does not sacrifice the performance customers have come to expect from Cirrus audio products and marks significant progress in simplifying the design of analog output circuitry by reducing the need for multiple system components.

Applications include consumer home audio products such as video game consoles, Blu-ray Disc and DVD systems, TVs, set-top boxes, and digital media players.

i2Systems delivers LED elevator downlights offering 75 percent energy savings

MONTREAL, CANADA: LED lighting developer i2Systems is now shipping the first solid state elevator downlights to be rolled out in volume, chopping energy consumption by 75 percent over conventional halogen models as well as lengthening lamp life from as little as 1,000 hours to 50,000.

The new Apeiron A1161 fixtures utilize ANSI-binned LUXEON Rebel LEDs and associated support services supplied by Future Lighting Solutions.

The energy savings is significant because in-cab recessed lights account for as much as 70 percent of the energy costs involved in elevator operation. The use of i2Systems’ 5W recessed fixtures instead of 20W halogen versions makes it possible to light a six-downlight elevator cab with just 30W of power instead of 180W.

The long LUXEON lifetime further reduces total cost of ownership by eliminating 19 out of 20 relampings, dramatically reducing replacement bulb expenses and related labor costs.

Each Apeiron A1161 fixture has a 200-lumen output and is available with a choice of cool, neutral or warm white LEDs that have been tightly binned for color consistency through Future’s inventory management program. The use of ANSI-binned LEDs ensures an optimal combination of color temperature and color rendering while also enabling the emitters to qualify for the US Department of Energy’s ENERGY STAR® program.

The small LUXEON Rebel form factor enabled i2Systems to achieve a high lumen density that helped produce a uniform beam free of telltale LED “dots,” while the amount of forward light in the Rebel beam pattern helped deliver a wide 120° light distribution to illuminate both the floor and the walls of the elevator cab.

A single power supply enclosure installs into the cab ceiling for simple wiring and easy serviceability, thanks to low LED power consumption that minimizes the size and weight of the transformer required to handle the necessary voltage conversions.

IXYS Colorado intros EVLD02-II evaluation board for IXLD02SI laser diode driver IC

FORT COLLINS, USA: IXYS Corp., a leader in power semiconductors for power conversion and motion control applications, announced that its Colorado division has developed and introduced the EVLD02-II Evaluation Board.

The EVLD02-II provides a convenient and easy to operate platform for evaluation of the IXLD02SI Laser Diode Driver IC (Integrated Circuit) that was developed by IXYS.

Improvements to the EVLD02-II Evaluation Board include clear layout, easier operation, improved thermal performance and improved pulse performance.

The new EVLD02-II has been redesigned from the ground up for ease of use. Input power of +5V (or +7V for higher diode voltage options) is easily supplied via a standard connector (included) that is keyed to ensure proper operation.

All components are placed on the top side of the circuit board and are clearly marked for easy reference to the schematic diagram supplied with each unit. Connection to the customer’s laser diode driver is now via large, easy to use/reuse pads.

All circuit elements are placed far enough apart to allow users to probe the circuit with minimal risk of shorting. The companion operating instructions have both a quick start guide for users familiar with laser diode driver products as well as a comprehensive guide to the operation of the circuit for easy reference.

By utilizing improved thermal techniques in the board layout the EVLD02-II will operate up to 17MHz, utilizing the full frequency range of the IXLD02SI Laser Diode Driver IC. No additional heat sinking is required for the operation of the IXLD02SI as mounted on the EVLD02-II.

Using low inductance board layout techniques, users are now able to take full advantage of the high speed and high performance operation of the IXLD02SI Laser Diode Driver IC. This device features frequencies up to 17MHz, pulse widths as low as 1.5nS and rise and fall times of as little as 600pS. The IXLD02SI also features frequency and pulse width agility which can be set and changed independently in real time.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Avago announces MGA-634P8 ultra LNA

SAN JOSE, USA & SINGAPORE: Avago Technologies, a leading supplier of analog interface components for communications, industrial and consumer applications, has announced the availability of its MGA-634P8 ultra low-noise amplifier (LNA) for base station (BTS) RF front-end design.

With the addition of the 1500 MHz to 2300 MHz MGA-634P8, Avago expands its LNA series to cover new GSM, TDS-CDMA and CDMA cellular infrastructure applications.

The wireless infrastructure industry must provide optimum coverage with the best signal quality in a crowded spectrum. Receiver sensitivity is the most critical requirement in a BTS receiver’s design. LNA selection, in particular the first-stage LNA, greatly affects the BTS receiver’s performance. Low noise figure is a key design goal. The MGA-634P8 has a best-in-class noise figure (NF) of 0.44 dB, 0.69 dB maximum, at 1900 MHz.

Another key design factor is linearity, which affects the receiver’s ability to distinguish between closely spaced wanted and spurious signals. Output third-order intercept, OIP3, is used to specify linearity.

At 1900 MHz and operating from 5 V with a 48 mA bias current, Avago’s proprietary GaAs Enhancement-mode pHEMT process technology gives a noise figure of 0.48 dB and an OIP3 of 36 dBm. The low NF and high OIP3 of Avago’s MGA-634P8 gives designers more margin for the BTS receiver path than available from previous amplifiers. The added performance is achieved with very low quiescent power, approximately 240 mW.

With built-in active bias circuitry, MGA-634P8 operating current is adjustable. This allows designers to make tradeoffs between operating current and output linearity while maintaining an optimum noise figure. BTS designers can meet various design needs and regional requirements with the same Avago LNA.

Since more communication channels must now fit onto a transmit/receive card, PCB real estate has become a key design challenge for BTS engineers. The MGA-634P8 is housed in a quad flat no-lead plastic (QFN) package with a small 4 mm2 footprint and slim 0.75 mm thickness.

In addition, the new MGA-634P8 LNA shares the same package footprint, pinout and external matching network of the existing 900 MHz MGA-633P8 LNA. A common PCB design can therefore be used for BTS RF front-end designs that operate in different frequency bands allowing different geographic markets to be served by one basic PCB design.

Asia-Pacific leads optical components market

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA: Optical components globally (OC) grew 9 percent sequentially to $1.2 billion in 1Q10, and could have posted roughly another 7 percent, but was limited by supply constraints. Ovum’s preliminary results show the OC global market to have grown 25 percent versus the year-ago period.

Supply constraint is the biggest problem plaguing suppliers. The market outlook is positive, with vendors estimating a 4–10 percent sequential quarterly growth. The market is on track for double digit annual growth, a strong rebound from the annual double digit decline in 2009.

For the first time, we have included regional estimates in our market share reporting – Asia-Pacific is the strongest region with 48 percent of global rolling 4Q revenues, in part due to contract manufacturers in the region. Fig. 1 shows the optical components market share by region.Fig. 1: Optical components market share by region. Source: Ovum.

Among the top 10 vendors, the gold star goes to Finisar who holds a market leading share of 14.3 percent. It posted a whopping 75 percent YoY growth and extended its market share 111 basis points on a rolling four-quarter basis. The second vendor is Sumitomo holding a market share of 10.8 percent and third is Avago Tech with a market share of 8.6 percent.

“This feast after famine situation for OC vendors is symptomatic of suppliers near the bottom of the food chain,” said Daryl Inniss, Vice President and Practice Leader, Components, at Ovum.

“Within 12 months suppliers are challenged to quickly change strategies from cost and capacity cutting to survive the macroeconomic downturn to capacity constraints and accurately determine if the current demand is simply a replenishing exercise that lasts a few quarters, or a new build cycle that can be a multiyear process and may require capital investment for expansion.”

EV Group intros industry's first fully automated wafer bonding system for HB-LED manufacturing

ST. FLORIAN, AUSTRIA: EV Group (EVG), a leading supplier of wafer bonding and lithography equipment for the MEMS, nanotechnology and semiconductor markets, has introduced the EVG560HBL wafer bonder -- the industry's first fully automated wafer bonding system for high-brightness light emitting diode (HB-LED) manufacturing.

The system features a new design for multi-substrate bonding and is capable of throughput rates of an unprecedented 160 bonds per hour. Based on the successful EVG500 wafer bonding series, the EVG560HBL is optimized to meet the unique requirements of HB-LED manufacturers with the advanced automation capabilities that they will need to increase their production capacity and yields.

The HB-LED market continues to grow at a rapid pace due to the rising number of applications that can take advantage of the lower energy consumption and myriad other benefits of LED devices.

According to market research firm Strategies Unlimited (Mountain View, Calif.), the HB-LED market will grow from $8.2 billion in 2010 to $20.2 billion by 2014, driven mainly by the market for LCD display backlights and lighting applications.

To meet this increased demand, HB-LED manufacturers must quickly ramp up to higher production capacity, as well as optimize their manufacturing processes to ensure the highest yields -- both of which drive the need for automated manufacturing solutions.

This is especially critical for the wafer bonding process, which is needed to transfer the active LED layer from epitaxial substrates onto carrier wafers with thermal properties better suited for HB-LED devices.

With a dominant position in the wafer bonder market and having served the HB-LED industry for many years, EVG is uniquely positioned to leverage its expertise to bring the first dedicated automated wafer bonding solution to this industry.

"Through continuous investment and innovation in equipment manufacturing and process engineering expertise, EVG is bringing start-of-the-art processing solutions for high-volume manufacturing applications to our customers," stated Paul Lindner, executive technology director, EV Group.

"Leveraging our 30 years of experience in developing wafer bonding solutions for advanced micro-electronics manufacturing, the EVG560HBL is the latest result in our ongoing efforts aimed at helping HB-LED manufacturers develop more efficient, cost-effective and higher yielding devices to meet the demands of their customers."
EVG560HBL System Features

The EVG560HBL is a multi-substrate wafer bonder that offers a number of advanced capabilities to enable high-volume HB-LED manufacturing, including:

* High-force capability, in-situ low-force wedge compensation and proprietary compliant layer technologies -- all to ensure bond uniformity across the entire wafer, which is essential for high-quality, multi-substrate bonding.
* Integrated pre-processing modules for low-temperature metal wafer bonding, which enables higher throughput and provides less thermal stress on the wafer stack, which in turn increases yield.
* Warped/bowed wafer handling capability for maneuvering thin and fragile substrates, which minimizes tool downtime and eliminates wafer breakage issues.
* Unique bond chamber design, which enables customers to change out substrate sizes in less than 30 minutes, increasing tool flexibility and lifetime while enabling easy maintenance and maximized tool uptime.
* Cassette-to-cassette operation.
* Mechanical wafer-to-wafer alignment.
* SECS II/GEM interface.
* Wafer ID tracking for advanced process control.

The EVG560HBL is available for purchase immediately.

OLED displays set to propel industry growth

DUBLIN, IRELAND: Research and Markets has announced the addition of the "Energy Efficient Displays Technologies to 2020 - Organic Light Emitting Diodes (OLED) Displays Set to Propel Growth of the Industry" report to its offering.

Global OLED display market to reach $10.6 billion by 2020
OLED displays have emerged as one of the most promising display technologies in recent years. The estimated market for OLED displays grew at a CAGR of 33.9 percent during the period 2005-2009. The global OLED market was valued at $822 million in 2009 in comparison to $256 million in 2005, and is further expected to grow at a CAGR of 25.5 percent during 2010-2020 to reach $10.6 billion by 2020.

The high growth in demand is expected to follow the take-off of OLED displays in large display applications including television sets, monitors, desktops and others.

As of 2009, OLED displays were mainly used in mobile phones, digital cameras, mp3 players and other small panel applications. The primary revenue driver for OLED displays is mobiles phones, which contribute almost 65 percent of the overall OLED revenues.

The applications that OLED displays are targeting are also served by Liquid Crystal Display (LCD), which make OLED a replacement technology. The manufacturers are concerned about whether the new technological developments will produce additional growth or will only displace the older technologies.

Further, the improvement in the LCD display technology along with a reduction in prices is hampering the deployment of OLED displays. The display industry needs a combination of new applications and technologies to accelerate revenue growth. The authors in consensus with the industry experts anticipates a high revenue potential of OLED displays in the years ahead.

Innovation and mass production likely to cause decline in OLED display prices
The innovation in technology and mass production volume are expected to cause a decline in OLED display prices. The authors, in its interviews with industry experts, find that the OLED displays are much easier and simpler to produce than the dominant LCD displays. Industry experts expect a huge decline in OLED prices once they are being produced in certain volumes.

The path to high volume manufacturing and larger sizes for Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diodes (AMOLED) has been slower and harder than anticipated by the industry experts. The OLED display manufacturers are finding it difficult to reduce prices, which in turn are holding back the commercialization of large panel displays.

OLED display manufactures are involved in R&D and expansion of their production lines, which will help them in attaining economies of scale and thus reduce the prices. OLED displays generate their own light meaning that they do not require any backlighting and thus consume less power. The low power consumption by OLED displays makes them best suited for applications such as laptops and mobile handsets.

OLED displays promise faster response times, wide viewing angles, exceptional colour reproduction, outstanding contrast levels, and high brightness. Further, the thin and lightweight designs of the OLED displays make them attractive to use in a variety of applications such as mobiles, laptops, digital cameras and mp3 players, among others.