The European Union's "Restrictions on Hazardous Substances" (RoHS) directive is scheduled to go into effect on July 1, 2006. This directive, which governs all electronic equipment manufactured or sold in the European Union member countries, limits the amount of lead (Pb) in electronic equipment.
Since announcing the conversion of its product packaging to environmentally friendly Pb-free plating last year, Microchip Technology has shipped a large volume of converted products to help speed regulatory compliance. On 31 October 2005, Microchip announced the shipment of its one billionth Pb-free device. Its new matte tin (Sn) plating material ensures that Microchip's Pb-free products are backward compatible with Pb-based soldering processes, and forward compatible with higher-temperature Pb-free processes.
By enabling its customers to convert to Pb-free semiconductors early, Microchip has helped them to eliminate Pb from their manufacturing processes well ahead of schedule.
All of Microchip's packages are available now in the new matte-tin, Pb-free finish for samples and volume production. Customers may receive SnPb or Pb-free material during the remainder of 2005, while the existing inventory of SnPb-plated products is depleted and replaced with Pb-free material.
More information is available at www.Microchip.com.