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Content posted in November 2001
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Heard on the Beat (Nov. 30)
News & Analysis  
11/30/2001   Post a comment
Heard on the Beat, Nov. 30
IBOC digital radio gets industry nod
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
The National Radio Systems Committee endorsed a digital FM radio broadcast technology Thursday (Nov. 29) and recommended that it be approved as an upgrade to current U.S. analog FM broadcasts.
Sanyo system-in-board package eliminates substrate
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Sanyo Electric Co. Ltd. has moved one step ahead in system-in-package technology with its Integrated System in Board (ISB) packaging approach.
TEL enhances prober to handle mix of 200- and 300-mm wafers
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
TOKYO -- In a move to increase flexibility and throughput in wafer-test operations, Tokyo Electron Ltd. today announced an enhanced version of its P-12XL prober, which adds a new sort loader, semi-automatic probe card changer, and an improved wide area probe polish feature.
Tellabs to acquire Ocular for $355 million
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Core-switch vendor Tellabs Inc. said Friday (Nov. 30) that it planned to acquire Ocular Networks Inc., a move that would give Tellabs an infusion of next-generation technology and expand its market into smaller installations.
Japan's SEH shuts down 6-in. wafer lines in U.S., cuts 350 jobs in Vancouver
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
VANCOUVER, Wash. -- Japanese silicon wafer giant Shin-Etsu Handotai Group (SEH) announced plans to shift its 6-inch production lines from the United States to Malaysia--a move that impacts 25.9% of its workforce, or 350 jobs, in its U.S. subsidiary here. In an apparent move to cut costs, SEH America Inc.--the U.S. subsidiary of SEH--on Thursday here announced plans to shift its older-generation, 6-inch wafer polishing lines from its U.S. headquarters in Vancouver, to a sister plant in Kuala Lu
Semiconductor Alert! (Nov. 26-30)
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Commentary & analysis of week's chip news, Nov. 26-30
MPEG-4 tapped for set-tops, home networks
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
MPEG-4 compression technology is gathering steam, earning keen interest from set-top-box vendors and semiconductor companies hungry to add features to current designs, and from service providers eyeing it for home networking and for set-tops integrated with personal video recorders.
Tessera says ITC won't review finding against Sharp in patent case
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
SAN JOSE -- Tessera Technologies Inc. today said the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has denied a request from Sharp Corp. for a review of an initial determination by an administrative law judge, who found Sharp in violation of chip-scale packaging patents held by Tessera (see Sept. 26 story).
Customs calls for tighter U.S. borders
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
implications of tighter trade measures could be felt in the high-tech sector, The U.S. Customs Service is asking traders -- including those within the electronics industry -- to help devise tighter security measures in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the United States.which will likely have to pass along more information about goods and packages moving through its supply chain.
Alcatel fields PON to deliver triple play of services
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
As cable operators beef up delivery of voice and data services, their networks are increasingly intertwining with optical ones to give a new look to cable's infrastructure. Capitalizing on that new look, Alcatel has developed a passive optical network (PON) scheme, which it demonstrated at the cable industry's Western Show this past week.
Latest missile defense test scheduled
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
The Pentagon said Thursday (Nov. 29) that it will conduct its seventh flight test of the missile defense system on Saturday (Dec. 1) over the Pacific Ocean.
Nassda avoids injunction sought by Synopsys
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Dodging a possibly crippling bullet, Nassda Corp. has avoided a preliminary injunction sought against its flagship product by Synopsys Inc.
ASML pushes out delivery of SVG's 157-nm tool by a year, sources say
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- After dropping its 193-nm scanner line earlier this week, the Silicon Valley Group Inc. (SVG) unit of ASM Lithography has reportedly pushed out the delivery of its 157-nm tool to late-2002--or about a year later than previously expected, according to sources. The delay could be another setback for ASML of the Veldhoven, the Netherlands. Plagued by chronic delays, SVG's Micrascan V 193-nm lithography system is being discontinued by ASML, which on Tuesday said it will conve
Light video codec from Asia eyes cell phones, PDAs
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
A proprietary video compression scheme with backing from Japan, South Korea and China is looking to give MPEG-4 a run for its money in handheld devices.
Packet voice spurs debate on fate of circuit switches
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Some of the biggest backers of circuit-switched architectures are acknowledging that packetized voice will overtake their analog world soon, but exactly how remains a bone of contention.
ATE, IC-packaging gear, and other tool segments hit hard in Q3, says SEMI
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
SAN JOSE -- It's safe to say that the chip-equipment market was terrible in the third quarter of 2001, especially for suppliers of back-end gear, according to statistics from the Semiconductor Equipment & Materials International (SEMI) trade group here. Shipments and bookings for all chip-equipment segments were depressed in the third quarter of 2001, but the back-end segments like testers and IC-packaging tools were especially hit hard. In some cases, shipments of automatic-test equipment (A
Slump doesn't ease ASIC time-to-market pressures
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
The economic slump that saw a large number of ASIC designs canceled has not lightened the burden for suppliers when it comes to delivering complex chips on tight schedules.
EBN 100 Stock Index
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Electronics industry may finally have hit bottom
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The long-awaited bottom of the industry downturn may finally have been reached, if recent financial statements issued by key companies are any indication. A host of companies, including Dell, Flextronics, and Intel, have confirmed their earlier forecasts for the current quarter, a refreshing change from previous quarters, when revenue and earnings projections were routinely downgraded as the market continued to deteriorate.
Shift to 450-mm wafers pushed out to 2013, says ITRS roadmap
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- While IC technology is expected to accelerate over the next several years, the shift to 450-mm wafers in chip processing appears to have been pushed out by about four years, from 2008 to 2013, according to the new 2001 International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS). In 1999, an executive from International Sematech predicated that chip makers would move from 300- to 450-mm wafers in IC production sometime in the 2008 time frame. Now, it appears that the shif
Exec sees home nets as future cornerstone of cable services
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
In stronger terms than most leaders in the cable industry usually dare, AOL Time Warner co-chief operating officer Robert Pittman used the Western Show Thursday (Nov. 29) to herald home networking as the key platform to extend the reach of cable beyond the set-top box, beyond cable modems, and beyond the transmission of TV shows to couch potatoes.
Dainippon Screen teams with IMEC to develop ultra-clean processes for fabs
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
LEUVEN, Belgium -- Dainippon Screen Mfg. Co. Ltd. of Japan and the IMEC research group here announced plans to collaborate in the development of ultra-clean processes for wafer fabrication. The goal is to create new single-wafer cleaning steps that will be four-to-five years ahead of process requirements in the chip industry.
Flextronics lays off 254 workers in New Hampshire
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Flextronics International Ltd. today has laid off 254 New Hampshire workers as part of the company's ongoing restructuring efforts.
Sematech warns of bottleneck for 157-nm lithography
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
While semiconductor industry officials in California upped the ante for advanced IC production technology with the rollout of the 2001 International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors on Thursday (Nov. 29), a gathering of mostly U.S.-based researchers warned a group of Taiwanese chip manufacturers that numerous obstacles jeopardize a smooth transition to implementing 157-nanometer lithography.
Analog Devices says digital audio IC removes analog processing from stereo players
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
NORWOOD, Mass. -- Analog Devices Inc. today announced a new integrated audio IC aimed at replacing low-cost analog systems designs with new digital processing capability that increases sound quality in consumer automotive and home stereo players.
Data link first between satellites for Silex system
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
The first ever data link between satellites has been established using a laser beam as the signal carrier (pictured).
Engine translates x86 code for MIPS processors
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Dynamite X/M is a CPU translation and optimization software engine that enables software written for legacy x86-based platforms to run on MIPS32 and MIPS64 instruction set architectures (ISAs).
Co-verification tool family
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
The Xpert family of hardware/software co-verification products enables system designers to debug system software before hardware prototypes are available.
Government to go ahead on IP acquisition tax relief
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
The government's decision to go ahead with the introduction of tax relief on acquisitions of intellectual property could stimulate more deals, but is also likely to bring changes to how it is traded.
Distributors hit by steep fall in the European semiconductor market
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
There were no signs of recovery for the European semiconductor market during the third quarter of 2001. Sales dropped by 26% in Q32001 against the same period last year, says DMASS.
Sirenza claims 25 million-unit milestone in SiGe products
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
SUNNYVALE, Calif.--Sirenza Microdevices Inc. today said it has now shipped over 25 million products, based on high-performance silicon-germanium (SiGe) process technology. The SiGe chips--including a range of radio-frequency (RF) devices--are fabricated by Atmel Corp., which is supplying foundry services to Sirenza.
10-A DC/DC converters
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Housed in a non-brick package that measures 1.6 x 2 x 0.4-in. packages, the UHE series of 2 to 10-A DC/DC converters deliver output voltages of 1.2, 1.5, 1.8, 2.5, 3.3, 5, 12, or 15 V.
Communications ICs will recovery slowly after 30.6% drop this year, says report
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
SCOTTSDALE, Calif. -- Worldwide revenues for communications ICs will plunge 30.6% to $28.8 billion in 2001 compared to $41.5 million in 2000, and chip sales in this troubled sector will not exceed last year's record until 2004, according to a new forecast from IC Insights Inc.
156.25 MHz Oscillators
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Aimed at Fibre Channel, SONET, and ATM designs, the F4100 series crystal oscillator delivers a frequency up to 156.25 MHz and a 3-V operating supply.
Real-time scope
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
The CSA7404 real-time oscilloscope helps design engineers measure the performance of 2.5-Gbps optical communication systems.
Ethernet module
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
The EPM-NET-100 module combines a 10/100 Ethernet interface with an on-board 32-pin DiskOnChip nonvolatile storage site.
Silver spheres fuse to form 100nm prisms under the influence of light
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
A team from Illinois-based Northwestern University has developed a technique to grow silver prism structures on the scale of 100nm. The process involves nanometre scale silver spheres held within a solution combining to form prisms under the influence of light.
Lego Mindstorms robot cleans up at the International Space Station
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
A Lego Mindstorms waste collector robot (pictured) has been flown up to the International Space Station to help tidy up.
Fab operators 'will direct chip upturn'
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Analysts reckon the shape and strength of the next upturn in the chip making business will depend heavily on the decisions made by fab operators next year.
Silaria begins beta testing its software for code compaction
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Irish processor-core developer Silaria has gone into beta testing with the first phase of its software for reducing the amount of space that programs take up.
Deal in sight for Scottish company on fibre-optic bus for WDM technology
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
Pipistrelle, the Scottish optoelectronics start-up, expects to complete the licensing of fibre optic bus wavelength division multiplexing technology from US-based Lockheed Martin in early 2002.
DRAM could end up in a price trap following a fall in memory prices
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
DRAM producers could end up being caught in a price trap following the precipitous fall in memory prices this year, making it almost impossible to charge more than the bare minimum for devices.
China 'won't hit fab target' without government funding
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11/30/2001   Post a comment
China is likely to fail to get its planned 25 semiconductor fabs in the country within five years, according to Gartner Dataquest senior analyst Dorothy Lai.
Commerce sees larger security role for NIST
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11/29/2001   Post a comment
Bush administration technology officials foresee an expanded role for the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in technology research and other wartime efforts such as homeland security.
Intel names five new fellows to recognize technical achievements
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11/29/2001   Post a comment
SANTA CLARA, Calif.-- Intel Corp. here today appointed five new individuals to the company's highest technical position: Intel fellow. The new Intel Fellows--selected for their technical contributions to the company--provide strategic technical guidance and represent Intel on various industry technical panels.
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