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posted in May 2002
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Valley control: One power management trick for new generation PCs
News & Analysis  
5/15/2002   Post a comment
Pentium-based computers can demand up to 60 amps from 1-V line. But powering the CPU core is only one challenge: clocks, peripherals, PCI and graphics bus drivers - even DDR memory - demand a variety of voltages and currents from an otherwise "Green PC." IMVP demands more aggressive power management techniques. This Fairchild engineer explores the main challenges for powering both desktop and notebook PCs.
Soitec qualifies ASM's vertical furnace for 300-mm SOI wafer production
News & Analysis  
5/15/2002   Post a comment
BERNIN, France -- Silicon-On-Insulator Technologies SA (Soitec) here has qualified a 300-mm wafer vertical furnace supplied by ASM International N.V. for mass production of silicon-on-insulator (SOI) substrates.
157-nm lithography will be ready when needed, concludes Sematech meeting
News & Analysis  
5/15/2002   Post a comment
AUSTIN, TEX. -- Optimism is growing over the prospects of 157-nm lithography being ready sooner than other next-generation exposure technologies, said International Sematech today following an annual meeting of experts.
Credence cuts mixed-signal test costs with building-block approach
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5/15/2002   Post a comment
FREMONT, Calif. -- Credence Systems Corp. today rolled out its newest configurable chip tester for mixed-signal ICs, saying that the ASL 2000MS system will support low-cost testing with a highly-flexible "building-block" architecture.
Motorola licenses MoSys' one-transistor SRAM technology for embedded memory
News & Analysis  
5/15/2002   Post a comment
SUNNYVALE, Calif.--MoSys Inc. today announced it has licensed its one-transistor SRAM technology to Motorola Inc. for embedded memory applications in IC designs. Terms of the agreement were not released.
Validating digital products with simple analogue techniques
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5/15/2002   Post a comment
Digital signals travelling along a circuit board or between logic chips do have measurable analogue characteristics, and overlooking these characteristics can compromise the reliability of the final product.
Developing Flows for 3G FDD Modem Designs
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5/15/2002   Post a comment
Frequency division duplexing (FDD) has emerged as the early modem winner in 3G wireless architectures. Now design engineers must implement and rework design flows to build these complex modem designs.
Brooks-PRI says its double size of nearest competitor in fab automation
News & Analysis  
5/15/2002   Post a comment
CHELMSFORD, Mass.--After seven months of planning and antitrust review, Brooks Automation Inc. today announced completion of its acquisition of PRI Automation Inc. to form the industry's largest supplier of fab automation systems.
Compact silicon drives color phones
Teardown  
5/14/2002   Post a comment
The Sony-Ericsson T68 mobile phone exemplifies the kind of feature-rich, high-margin handset the wireless industry is banking on for future profits. Its hardware design reflects the trend toward more compact, powerful silicon.
Infineon offers 1,200-V transistors with TrenchStop, FieldStop technologies
News & Analysis  
5/14/2002   Post a comment
NUREMBERG, Germany-- During a power electronics trade show here today, Infineon Technologies AG announced a new generation of insulated-gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs) for voltage ranges up to 1,200 V in compact system designs.
10 Reasons to Choose DMT for VDSL Designs
News & Analysis  
5/14/2002   Post a comment
With video catching on in the broadband sector, members of the DSL community are working hard to bring VDSL to life. But, to make these systems work, designers must first solve the heated DMT vs. CAP/QAM battle. Here's why DMT should win.
Fujitsu rolls out its multi-bit 'MirrorFlash' based on R&D with AMD
News & Analysis  
5/14/2002   Post a comment
TOKYO -- Fujitsu Ltd. today announced its version of 64-megabit flash memories based on a multi-bit cell technology developed with flash partner Advanced Micro Devices Inc. Fujitsu is calling its version of the memory "MirrorFlash," while AMD calls the technology "MirrorBit."
ESS taps NEC's MPEG2 technology for chips in DVD recorders, set-top boxes
News & Analysis  
5/14/2002   Post a comment
FREMONT, Calif. -- ESS Technology Inc. today announced it has licensed MPEG2 audio/video encoder technology from NEC Corp. in Japan, and it plans to integrate the function with MPEG4 capability in a new series of single-chip solutions for home entertainment products. The pact also expands the collaboration between the two companies in set-top box ICs.
Sweden's Umetrics and IBM collaborate on fab monitoring software
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5/13/2002   Post a comment
UMEA, Sweden--Privately-held Umetrics AB today announced a partnership with IBM Corp. to develop wafer fab equipment monitoring software, called FabStat, which will be introduced later this year for advanced process fault detection.
Rambus stock drops on reports of possible antitrust suit, but is it old news?
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
NEW YORK -- News reports of a possible federal antitrust lawsuit against Rambus Inc. pushed the company's stock price down by nearly 3% today in trading, but it remains unclear whether the Federal Trade Commission is planning new legal action against the memory technology supplier.
Lattice expands complex PLD series with 3.3- to 1.8-V parts for 'one-stop solution'
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
HILLSBORO, Ore.--Lattice Semiconductor Corp. today introduced a new 3.3-volt series of complex programmable logic devices (CPLDs), and it expanded the company's lineup of 2.5- and 1.8-volt CPLDs.
Microtune says new tuner chip cuts cost of cable modem frontends by 25%
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
PLANO, Tex. -- With prices collapsing in cable modem markets, Microtune Inc. today launched a new low-cost single-chip broadband tuner, which could potentially save about 25% in the bill of materials for frontend systems in cable modems.
Vector architecture optimized for DSP imaging/wireless apps
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
A novel DSP architecture that exploits the parallelism and narrow data paths typical of image processing will be presented at the Custom Integrated Circuits Conference.
MOSFET design simplifies DRAM
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
Details on a compact memory architecture aimed at high-performance, low-cost embedded DRAM for subquarter-micron generations will be presented at the Custom Integrated Circuits Conference this week.
In-P HBTs fill high- speed, low power optical tranceiver requirements
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
Indium-phosphide-based (In-P) heterojunction bipolar transistors (HBTs) are up to meeting the next generation fiber optic systems demands for circuits operating at 50 GHz clock rates.
Flexible I/O speeds data switch
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
A new concept for crossbar switching fabrics that targets unused switching paths will be presented at the Custom Integrated Circuits Conference this week.
Field programmable mixed-signal SoC offer more levels of integration
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
What is believed to be the first mixed-signal field-programmable system-on-chip (FPSoC) will be presented at the Custom Integrated Circuits Conference this week.
Adaptive approach needed for 10-Gbit/s backplanes
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
As telecom and networking systems move toward 10 Gbit/second speeds, maintaining signal integrity becomes an ever-greater challenge.
Ac scheme bumps I/O density
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
Here's an interesting way to keep up with Rent's Rule as chip dimensions continue to scale down.
600-MHz DSP handles more channels, prepped for 3G basestations
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
Viterbi and turbo decoder coprocessors have been added to a 600-MHz DSP.
Innovative ideas leap design hurdles at CICC
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
The IEEE Custom Integrated Circuits Conference (CICC) has been the prime venue for new perspectives on the toughest problems facing IC designers. This year's event, to be held this week in Orlando, Fla., offers a fresh crop of innovative circuit design ideas, some of which are excerpted in this week's Focus section.
AMD officially rolls out MirrorBit flash in attack on Intel's Strataflash
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
SUNNYVALE, Calif. -- Competition in flash memories intensified today with the official launch of MirrorBit memories by Advanced Micro Devices Inc. The new MirrorBit devices are based on a multi-bit technology that doubles the amount of information on a chip, compared to standard flash cells, and it is AMD's response to Intel Corp.'s Strataflash devices, which were launched in 1997.
HPL creates 'Design For Yield' division to speed new IC production
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
SAN JOSE -- HPL Technologies Inc. today launched a new division to address the growing gap between IC design and the ability to produce chips with high yields in wafer fabs. The Design For Yield (DFY) division will focus on development of yield analysis and optimization software for integrated circuit designers, said the San Jose company.
ESS says DVD chip volumes surge in typically slow second quarter
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
FREMONT, Calif. -- ESS Technology Inc. today said it shipped a record-high 2 million advanced DVD decoder chip solutions in April, which is normally the start of a seasonal slowdown period. The company reiterated its guidance for strong sequential growth in DVD chip shipments, predicting a 10-to-20% increase in the current second quarter over the first three months of this year.
Kawasaki and Israeli's Silicom design 'foolproof' USB connection ICs
News & Analysis  
5/13/2002   Post a comment
KFAR SAVA, Israel -- Silicom Ltd. here and San Jose-based Kawasaki LSI USA Inc. today claimed development of the industry's first "self-install" enabled chips for the Universal Serial Bus (USB) standard. The new Iplug-USB enabled chips are part of a three-year partnership agreement between the two companies, which will retain the rights to market the technology under their own brand names.
SIA says trade authority will open Asian markets for U.S. chip suppliers
News & Analysis  
5/10/2002   Post a comment
SAN JOSE--The U.S.-based Semiconductor Industry Association here today praised a bipartisan compromise in the Senate that will allow work to continue on setting up Trade Promotion Authority under the U.S. Administration.
Power chip supplier IXYS reports 27% sequential sales growth in quarter
News & Analysis  
5/10/2002   Post a comment
SANTA CLARA, Calif.--Power semiconductor supplier IXYS Corp. here reported a 27% sequential increase in net revenues to $20.4 million in the company's fiscal fourth quarter, ended March 31, compared to $16.1 million in the prior three-month period. Compared to a year ago, IXYS sales were 36% lower than $32 million in fiscal Q4 2001.
Europe's austriamicrosystems hones strategy for push into global markets
News & Analysis  
5/10/2002   Post a comment
SAN JOSE -- Chip maker austriamicrosystems AG of Austria is pushing hard to put itself on the semiconductor map--globally speaking. The 22-year-old semiconductor company says it is taking aggressive steps to make a name for itself outside of Europe as a major supplier of ASICs and specialty foundry processes for worldwide customers.
Atmel says judge hikes verdict against SST to $36.5 million in patent case
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5/10/2002   Post a comment
SAN JOSE--Atmel Corp. today said a federal judge has increased a jury's verdict against Silicon Storage Technology Inc. from $20 million to $36.5 million in a patent lawsuit over charge-pump technology used to provide programming voltages in memory chips.
Sir John Egan leaves Qinetiq
News & Analysis  
5/10/2002   Post a comment
Privatisation specialist Sir John Egan has quit as non-executive chairman of Qinetiq. His departure comes just as the former MoD defence arm is evaluating potential private sector investors.
Flash Memory and USB Combine to Extend Embedded System Connectivity
News & Analysis  
5/10/2002   Post a comment
Combine the in-system reprogramming capabilities of flash memory with the "plug and play" ease-of-use of USB in a microprocessor? Mitsubishi's Chris Brandt and Jim Page discuss the cost- and space-saving advantages of such a technology marriage.
Opti sues National over bus-interface IC technologies
News & Analysis  
5/9/2002   Post a comment
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. -- Opti Inc. late today announced it has filed a patent infringement suit against National Semiconductor Corp. over bus-interface chip technology. The suit, filed in the Northern District of California, claims that National has infringed on two of Opti's U.S. patents. The patents in question involve chips that incorporate Opti's "low-pin-count interface specification" technology.
HPL Technologies grows revenues 26% in quarter after acquisitions
News & Analysis  
5/9/2002   Post a comment
SAN JOSE -- Yield optimization software supplier HPL Technologies Inc. reported a 26% sequential increase in revenues to $13.7 million in the company's fiscal fourth quarter, ended March 31, compared to $10.9 million in the prior three-month period. HPL's revenues were up 209% from $4.4 million in the same quarter last year.
AMD cuts 200 more jobs in Austin as it prepares Fab 25 for flash production
News & Analysis  
5/9/2002   Post a comment
AUSTIN, Tex. -- About 200 additional workers will be laid off by Advanced Micro Devices Inc. here as the Silicon Valley-based company transitions its 200-mm wafer Fab 25 facility from microprocessor production to flash memories.
OFDM Uncovered Part 2: Design Challenges
Design How-To  
5/9/2002   Post a comment
While OFDM is an attractive option for WLAN designers, it also brings with it some key implementation challenges. In Part 2 of this set, we examine how designers can handle offset, phase-noise and dynamic range headaches in OFDM architectures.
Preparing for a New Era of Growth in EDA
Design How-To  
5/9/2002   Post a comment
If you are involved with EDA tools, chip design, silicon IP, or chip-based electronic systems, you probably already know about the Design Automation Conference, returning this year to the Big Easy. Co-technical committee chairs Luciano Lavagno and David Blaauw discuss some of this year's DAC highlights, including technical coverage of embedded-system design challenges, the re-emergence of analog design, and new approaches for dealing with increasing IC complexity and power consumption.
Taiwan's Powerchip orders PRI's reticle stocker for new 300-mm fab
News & Analysis  
5/8/2002   Post a comment
BILLERICA, Mass.--PRI Automation Inc. today announced it has been selected by memory maker Powerchip Semiconductor Corp. to supply bare reticle stocker systems for a new 300-mm wafer fab being constructed in Taiwan.
Analysis: New network DRAMs become hot commodity
News & Analysis  
5/8/2002   Post a comment
You would think the networking equipment market was booming again, the way DRAM vendors are falling all over themselves courting OEMs.
Samsung, Toshiba strike network-specific DRAM pact as competition heats up
News & Analysis  
5/8/2002   Post a comment
TOKYO -- With the battle over "network DRAMs" spreading, Toshiba Corp. and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. today formally announced an agreement to produce fully compatible versions of fast-cycle RAMs, which are based on specifications jointly developed by Toshiba and Fujitsu Ltd.
Design Considerations for Edge Routers: Part 1
Design How-To  
5/8/2002   Post a comment
The service edge router is the melting pot of the comm sector housing everything from ATM to IP traffic. In Part 1, we layout the key design considerations that engineers need to evaluate when building these router designs.
TI announces major win in Motorola cable modem; Broadcom not worried
News & Analysis  
5/7/2002   Post a comment
DALLAS --Texas Instruments Inc. here today announced that it has teamed with Motorola Inc.'s Broadband Communications Sector teamed to create and deliver certified data over cable service interface specification (DOCSIS) 1.0, 1.1 and 2.0 cable modems for the broadband cable market.
APT to acquire Microsemi's low-frequency RF transistor business
News & Analysis  
5/7/2002   Post a comment
IRVINE, Calif.--Microsemi Corp. today announced plans to sell its low-frequency RF bipolar transistor business to Advanced Power Technology Inc. of Bend, Ore., for $12.2 million in cash.
Virage will buy In-Chip Systems to combine embedded memory with SoC platforms
News & Analysis  
5/7/2002   Post a comment
FREMONT, Calif.--Embedded memory technology supplier Virage Logic Corp. today announced an agreement to acquire In-Chip Systems Inc. of Sunnyvale, Calif., a supplier of logic platforms for system-on-chip (SoC) designs. The purchase will be for stock and cash valued at less than $20 million, according to Virage.
Trikon's 33% sequential drop in sales matches downgraded guidance
News & Analysis  
5/7/2002   Post a comment
NEWPORT, Wales -- Trikon Technologies Inc. reported a net loss of $3.8 million on revenues of $8.0 million in the first quarter of 2002, compared to a net income of $6.7 million on sales of $37.6 million in the same period last year.
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