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Metallic Nanoparticles May Lower Solar Cost
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7/29/2015   Post a comment
While the domestic solar energy industry grew 34% last year, fundamental technical breakthroughs are still needed to hit the national goal of reducing the cost of solar electricity to 6 cents per kilowatt-hour. Researchers at Rice University say they have found a way reduce the costs of photovoltaic solar cells.
Smart Meters Can Destabilize Grid, Study Says
News & Analysis  
7/28/2015   6 comments
In some geographies including Germany, smart meters are mandatory for new buildings – being an ingredient of smart grids, they allow energy suppliers to match energy generation and consumption by implementing differentiated tariffs and help users to optimize energy consumption profiles.
Rohm Semiconductor Acquires Powervation
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7/28/2015   Post a comment
Analog IC manufacturer Rohm has acquired digital power IC company Powervation for approximately $70 million in cash. The deal will bolster Rohm’s share of the power market as high density systems increasingly call for a digital power.
Freescale to Merge with NXP at Top of Game
News & Analysis  
7/24/2015   9 comments
In what might become the last quarterly financial call for the awaiting acquisition by NXP Semiconductors, Freescale delivered strong second-quarter financial results, backed by record-breaking gross margins, operating profits, and design wins.
Research Project Tackles Driver Takeover Issue
News & Analysis  
7/23/2015   3 comments
Automated driving promises a more relaxed mobility, but what if a situation occurs that exceeds the capabilities of the electronic chauffeur? German aerospace research centre DLR has developed a system that alerts the driver in the case of an emerging problem.
Cypress Dual Mode PMICs Win ACE Energy Award
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7/22/2015   Post a comment
Cypress Semiconductor Corp. has been honored with UBM Canon’s ACE Award for energy technology. The San Jose, Calif.-based company produces dual mode energy harvesting power management integrated circuits for the Internet of Things.
ACE Awards Names NXP ‘Company of the Year’
News & Analysis  
7/22/2015   1 comment
In a year distinguished by a wave of mergers in the chip industry, NXP fired the opening salvo by announcing a merger plan with Freescale. The news stunned the world, but won overwhelming approval from shareholders, customers and employees.
5G Still Needs Millimeter Wave Work
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7/22/2015   Post a comment
Detailed system designs and improved architecture must be developed before millimeter waves can enter the market in a real way for 5G cellular systems around 2020.
Fuel Cell Tech Refueling Network Planned
News & Analysis  
7/21/2015   2 comments
Acceptance of hydrogen fuel cell technology suffers from the lack of an adequate refuelling infrastructure. But the situation could improve faster than some critics expect, as the HyFive project establishes a hydrogen filling station network across Europe.
Research Project Combines Valet Parking, Battery Charging
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7/21/2015   Post a comment
In the V-Charge project, six research partners are currently developing applications around autonomous and, in some cases, electric vehicles. The focus of the project is on methods and algorithms enabling vehicles to autonomously park, charge its batteries and get back to its user as soon at it is summoned.
Taiwan Chipmakers Leery of M&A Wave
News & Analysis  
7/17/2015   1 comment
Taiwan chipmakers say they’re worried that the ongoing wave of global merger and acquisition activity in the semiconductor industry may leave them stranded.
Bell Labs Bucks Short-Term Research Trend
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7/15/2015   Post a comment
Solving networking problems is both an immediate and long-term goal for Bell Labs, as well as an interesting insight into its research strategy. While some legacy laboratories favor 2- or 3-year projects, Bell Labs emphasizes longer-term research.
Battery Startup Gets Ex-Fab Exec
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7/14/2015   Post a comment
Albany battery startup BessTech announced that Doug Grose, former CEO of GlobalFoundries, has joined the company as its chief technology officer. Grose retired from GlobalFoundries and served as CEO for three years
Globalfoundries Launches Own FDSOI Processes
News & Analysis  
7/13/2015   12 comments
Globalfoundries Inc. has announced that it is offering a fully depleted silicon-on-insulator (FD-SOI) manufacturing platform with a nominal 22nm minimum geometry design rule that can operate down to 0.4V.
Supercomputing Centers-of-Excellence Twin
News & Analysis  
7/13/2015   1 comment
IBM announced today two new Centers of Excellence at Oak Ridge National Laboratories and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, both of which will be focused on the joint development of the applications necessary to make the Coral supercomputers successful.
Wafer Fab Closures Analyzed by Diameter, Region
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7/10/2015   Post a comment
Chipmakers closed or repurposed 83 wafer fabs in the period 2009 to 2014 according to IC Insights.
Indian Wafer Fab Will be Specialty Foundry
News & Analysis  
7/10/2015   1 comment
Cricket Semiconductor – a company set up with the purpose of building and operating $1 billion analog and power semiconductor wafer fab in India – will operate as a specialty foundry, according to Lou Hutter, one of two former Texas Instruments executives who formed the company.
Battery-Powered Aircraft Crosses the Alps
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7/9/2015   Post a comment
Researchers of the Institute of Aircraft Design in Stuttgart showed the practicability of battery powered aircraft in a flight across the Alps mountains – a first time for a battery-powered plane. The flight also marks a milestone in the quest for energy-efficient and carbon-neutral aviation.
TSMC Urges Taiwan to Solve Long-Term Power Supply Issues
News & Analysis  
7/8/2015   5 comments
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), the world’s largest chip foundry, has urged the Taiwan government to solve a long-term power supply issue that could impact TSMC as soon as five years from now.
Samsung Boosts Batteries with Graphene
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7/6/2015   Post a comment
Researchers from Samsung’s Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT), the company’s R&D hub, have found a way to extend lithium-ion battery life using silicon and graphene. The carbide-free graphene combats expansion to increase battery life by 1.8x over conventional lithium-ion batteries.
Thin Film Solar Cells May Rival Silicon
News & Analysis  
7/6/2015   3 comments
A consortium of 11 European institutions in eight countries aim to one-up the cheap Chinese thin-film solar cells with efficiencies rivaling silicon at a fraction of the cost.
Apple Watch Tear Down Reveals European Chips
News & Analysis  
7/3/2015   1 comment
The Apple Watch, is the trailblazer of a wearables equipment market set to boom by 2020, according to market research organization Yole Developpement. And several leading European chipmakers are set to benefit, according to a tear down of the watch.
FinFETs + FD-SOI Proposition: May Save Power
News & Analysis  
7/2/2015   25 comments
Ron Martino, vice president of application processors and advanced technology for Freescale’s MCUs says there is room both both FinFETs, FD-SOI and combinations of the two.
Intel President, Execs Step Down
News & Analysis  
7/2/2015   11 comments
Intel President Renée James is among several top executives who announced plans to resign from the chip giant. Three other executives from various divisions will also leave the company.
High-Speed Converters Aid Record Terabit Field Trial
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7/2/2015   Post a comment
Ultra high-speed digital-to-analog and analog-to-digital converters from Socionext Inc. (Yokohama, Japan) have been used in communications field trial that achieved 38.4Tbps over 762 kilometers of optical fiber.
Nanogenerator Harvests Energy From Rolling Tires
News & Analysis  
7/1/2015   2 comments
Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (Madison, WI) have developed a nanogenerator that harvests friction energy from a vehicle's rolling tires, promising a new way for automobile manufacturers to achieve more efficiency from their vehicles.
Ericsson Layoffs Target R&D, Supply
News & Analysis  
6/30/2015   6 comments
Ericsson will release 10% of its Swedish workforce as part of an efficiency and cost-reduction plan first announced in March. The plan will cut approximately 2,100 job and save an equivalent of $301 million USD in the second quarter of 2015.
Augmented Reality Helps Blind See the Light
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6/29/2015   Post a comment
Three hundred or so visually challenged people are getting assistance in seeing the world around them, thanks to augmented reality goggles developed at the University of Oxford in England. Smart Specs by Va-ST use 3D mapping and depth sensing to provide object and facial recognition assistance
GaN Converters Charge Simultaneously
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6/29/2015   Post a comment
Mobile devices have gotten slimmer over the years but chargers have remained in the same clunky form factors. Zolt, a subsidiary of gallium nitride fab Avogy, has developed a lipstick tube sized charger capable of powering three devices at once at up to 70 Watts.
Leti’s FD-SOI Lesson: Build Ecosystems
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6/26/2015   Post a comment
Annual open-house events hosted by CEA-Leti and IMEC collided this week, exposing the growing rivalry between the two laboratories. As they court the same partners in the electronics industry, at stake are big contracts and government grants.
Wireless Charging Awareness Surging
News & Analysis  
6/26/2015   1 comment
More than twice the percentage of consumers surveyed said they are now aware of the technology, with most indicating they would like to try it.
Freescale Networks on 16nm
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6/24/2015   Post a comment
Freescale’s next generation of multicore processors will use 16nm FinFET process technology, officials announced at the company’s annual conference, Freescale Technology Forum. Two QorIQ chips, LS1048A and LS1088A, are designed for Internet of Things networking at the edge.<
Low Temperature 2D MoS2 Now at Wafer-Level
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6/24/2015   Post a comment
Researchers at the University of Southampton's Zepler Institute have fabricated and characterised large-area 2D films of molybdenum disulphide (MoS2), an N-type semiconductor, at room temperature using a process which is scalable to any size wafer.
Brazil Startup offers PMIC for Solar Energy Harvesting
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6/24/2015   Post a comment
SiliconReef, a Brazilian startup founded around 2008 that offers analog and mixed-signal design services, has introduced its first product, a power management IC for solar energy harvesting applications.
Startup Taps Into Home Energy Circuit
News & Analysis  
6/23/2015   1 comment
Startup Curb wants to help you find the energy hog in your home -- whether that be your spouse or a space heater. The home automation company has developed a hardware system that attaches to a home circuit breaker to monitor energy consumption.
Freescale MCUs Secure IoT
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6/23/2015   Post a comment
Freescale announced a new family of microcontrollers designed with a focus on security for the Internet of Things. The Kinetis K80, K81, and K82 sport several layers of hardware security.
AMD Denies Mulling Breakup
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6/22/2015   Post a comment
Company denies report that it hired a consulting firm to help it consider options for breaking up the company or spinning off part of its business.
Freescale Adds Comms to IoT MCUs
News & Analysis  
6/22/2015   1 comment
Freescale announced a new set of microcontrollers with integrated communications as part of its Kinetis family. The multi-protocol chips are designed for home automation and industrial control devices in the Internet of Things
Freescale i.MX 7 Finally Here
News & Analysis  
6/22/2015   3 comments
Freescale's latest application processor, the i.MX 7 comes with one or two ARM Cortex-A7 microprocessors as well as one Cortex-M4 micro controller resulting in a unique heterogeneous architecture that consumes as little as 250 microAmps in its Low Power State Retention mode (LPSR).
IBM Demos III-V FinFETs on Silicon
News & Analysis  
6/18/2015   3 comments
IBM has found a way to use confined epitaxial overgrowth (CELO) to build III-V FinFETs on silicon wafers using standard CMOS processing.
ACE Awards Finalists Recognized for Innovation in Electronics
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6/18/2015   Post a comment
Winners to be announced at the Embedded Systems Conference Silicon Valley; ACE Lifetime Achievement to celebrate Linear Technology's Bob Swanson and Bob Dobkin.
AMD Beats Nvidia to 2.5-D Graphics
News & Analysis  
6/16/2015   6 comments
AMD became the first first graphics vendor to ship products using 2.5-D memory chip stacks, beating rival Nvidia.
Fairchild Out "Smarts" Dumb MEMS
News & Analysis  
6/16/2015   7 comments
Fairchild announced its entry into the MEMS market -- under its own label -- last year, even though its been a MEMS foundry since 2001 from which it gained the experience to build "smart" high-end devices with built-in DSPs that it claims reduces power over competing high-accuracy six axis inertial measurement units (IMUs).
Video: 8K-Resolution on YouTube
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6/15/2015   Post a comment
"Ghost Towns" from Neumann Films is claimed to be the first 8K-resolution video available to be viewed on YouTube.
3D Printed Aircraft Parts Will Save Weight, Fuel Says Study
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6/11/2015   Post a comment
A case study completed by researchers at Northwestern University (Evanston, Illinois) finds that using 3-D printing to manufacture the metal parts of aircraft could offer significant savings in fuel, materials and other resources.
Smart Glasses Strap On AR
News & Analysis  
6/10/2015   Post a comment
Emerging technologies like AR comes with a series of challenges and opportunities, executives from smart glasses and AR device companies said during a session. Still, as additional use cases develop the possibilities are endless.
3D Power Packaging With Focus on Embedded Substrate Technologies
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6/10/2015   Post a comment
The power electronics industry and the semiconductor industry, inseparably intertwined with one another, are facing unprecedented efficiency, cost, construction and thermal challenges which provide many opportunities for innovation.
Video: Panorama Rolls Out MEMS-Based Chemical Sensor
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6/5/2015   Post a comment
Panorama Synergy Ltd. (Perth, Western Australia) has developed a chemical sensor based on the interaction of silicon photonic structures with a microscopic cantilever beam.
Batteries Charge for Energy Role
News & Analysis  
6/4/2015   1 comment
Improved technology for smart cities and the decreasing cost of renewable energy installation is rapidly changing the power management market. The resulting decentralization of electricity sources requires new power management solutions and business models, which will drive a multi-billion dollar market in the next 10 years.
City Smarts Marshalled in Germany
News & Analysis  
6/4/2015   9 comments
Germany's smart cities plan aims to make Berlin, Stuttgart, Hamburg and other cities self-sufficient in energy, integrated in access to mass transit with a single e-token, and totally connected to citizens for communication during normal and times of emergencies.
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In conjunction with unveiling of EE Times’ Silicon 60 list, journalist & Silicon 60 researcher Peter Clarke hosts a conversation on startups in the electronics industry. One of Silicon Valley's great contributions to the world has been the demonstration of how the application of entrepreneurship and venture capital to electronics and semiconductor hardware can create wealth with developments in semiconductors, displays, design automation, MEMS and across the breadth of hardware developments. But in recent years concerns have been raised that traditional venture capital has turned its back on hardware-related startups in favor of software and Internet applications and services. Panelists from incubators join Peter Clarke in debate.
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