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Industry News

Around the circuit

January 12, 2011
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Industry News

Agilent Technologies Inc. announced it has acquired certain assets of Signametrics, a manufacturer of PXI, VXI, PCI and USB digital multimeters (DMM), and modular switching products. These test and measurement products are commonly used in manufacturing production and automotive test systems. The acquisition expands Agilent's current offering in DMMs and data acquisition and switching solutions.


CPI International Inc. announced the signing of a definitive merger agreement under which CPI International (CPI) will be acquired by an affiliate of Veritas Capital Fund IV (Veritas Capital) for $19.50 per share in cash. The purchase price reflects a premium of approximately 35 percent over the closing price of CPI common stock on November 24, 2010, and 38 percent over the average closing price of CPI common stock for the 90 days ending November 24, 2010. The transaction is valued at approximately $525 M.

Microsemi Corp., a manufacturer of high performance analog-mixed signal integrated circuits, high reliability semiconductors and RF subsystems, announced the successful completion of its tender offer, through its wholly owned subsidiary Artful Acquisition Corp., for all outstanding shares of Actel Corp. Based upon information provided by Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., the depositary for the tender offer, approximately 23.1 million shares, representing approximately 87.9 percent of Actel's outstanding shares, were validly tendered and not withdrawn in the offer, together with an additional 860,000 shares tendered by notice of guaranteed delivery. Artful Acquisition Corp. accepted for payment all such validly tendered shares. Microsemi does not intend to offer a subsequent offering period in connection with the offer.

Fairchild Semiconductor, long-acknowledged as a power semiconductor leader, is increasing its focus on the mobile handset market. The company is building on its success in the development of semiconductor solutions that deliver new levels of functionality to help differentiate mobile designs. Fairchild creates feature-specific semiconductor products that complement chip sets in mobile devices. It is increasing investment in and development of a targeted portfolio of analog and power intellectual property (IP) to support handset manufacturers' specific signal path requirements.

Technical Research and Manufacturing Inc., a global leader in the design and manufacturing of passive RF and microwave components, is announcing the changing of its name to TRM Microwave and the launch of its new website, www.trmmicrowave.com.

RF Micro Devices Inc. (RFMD), a leader in the design and manufacture of high performance radio frequency components and compound semiconductor technologies, announced the company has added its world-class Gallium Arsenide (GaAs) technology to RFMD's foundry services portfolio and will begin providing a full suite of GaAs Pseudomorphic High Electron Mobility Transistor (PHEMT) technologies to customers of its Foundry Services business unit. Specifically, RFMD will make available three distinct GaAs PHEMT technologies optimized for high power, low noise and RF switching products.

Tektronix Service Solutions, a single-source provider of instrument calibration, repair and related services, announced the expansion of services into Canada with a new service lab in Mississauga, Ontario. The expansion provides enhanced service options and added flexibility for companies that rely on their test, measurement and control instrumentation for day to day operations. Tektronix Service Solutions' new facility is located at 400 Britannia Road East, Unit 2, Mississauga, ON L4Z 1X9.

M/A-COM Technology Solutions Inc. announced that its Santa Clara Design Center has moved to a new facility with state-of-the-art equipment to accommodate the expanded engineering and business functions that occur at this location. This Design Center is focused on the design and development of monolithic PHEMT integrated solutions covering 6 to 50 GHz for commercial and military applications. M/A-COM Tech had previously announced in May 2010 that Henrik Morkner joined the company as Director of Engineering to lead this team in Santa Clara, and this expansion points to the group's commitment to collaborating with its marketing teams and customers to develop industry-leading devices. The new Santa Clara Design Center occupies approximately 11,600 square feet and includes a 1,200 square foot engineering lab for design and test characterization of MMICs, surface-mount devices (SMD) and connectorized modules.

Renaissance Electronics Corp./HXI announced that HXI has moved to the corporate headquarters in Harvard, MA. The new address is 12 Lancaster County Road, Harvard, MA 01451 and the phone number is (978) 772-7774. Web and e-mail addresses remain the same.

IKE Micro, and its sister company Bonding Source, have moved into a newly refurbished facility, doubling their capacity. The 14,000 square foot IKE Micro facility includes a 3,200 Class 10,000 clean room, ESD flooring in the clean room and SMT areas, a larger material handling area for additional turnkey business, and proprietary manufacturing areas. IKE has also installed a high end Palomar 8000 automatic ball bonding machine. The expanded Bonding Source facility includes an area for monitored freezers and a clean room for the laser cutting of epoxy pre-forms. Bonding Source has purchased a CO2 laser machine that will be installed in February 2011.

Remcom announced a new partner in its program to provide custom computer systems for speeding FDTD electromagnetic simulation performance. Exxact Corp. develops and manufactures innovatively engineered high performance systems for graphics processing unit (GPU) computing, professional workstation, visual computing and other applications. The company's custom configured systems include the most modern GPU technology available today and can run XFdtd® simulations at speeds orders of magnitudes faster than traditional hardware.

Samsung Telecommunications America (Samsung Mobile) and Cellular South announced their collaboration to build and deploy a fourth generation (4G) mobile broadband network using Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology. The agreement also calls for Samsung Mobile to design and launch two LTE-enabled smartphone handsets available in 2011 in Cellular South's 700 MHz footprint.

Giga-tronics announced that Giga-tronics Inc. and Advanced Test Equipment Rentals (ATEC) partnered to offer lease and rental of Giga-tronics' high-end RF and microwave test and measurement equipment. ATEC, a leader in electronic test equipment asset management, will provide rental and leasing of Giga-tronics RF and microwave test solutions, including fast-switching microwave signal generators, microwave power amplifiers, and high-accuracy power meters and sensors. The partnering agreement will include options for integrated promotion, advertising and sales of test solutions. ATEC will be able to access the US market with the Giga-tronics sales channel and Giga-tronics will be able to supply its products for rental, lease and distribution through ATEC.

Agilent Technologies Inc. announced that Moray Rumney, the lead technologist specializing in LTE at Agilent, has won the Informa LTE North America 2010 award for individual contribution to LTE development. The Informa LTE North America Awards recognize and celebrate excellence in the LTE community. The nine awards categories cover LTE standards, product design and network deployment, plus the individual contribution award. Rumney's work is centered around radio standardization at 3GPP RAN WG4 and more recently at the LTE/SAE Trial Initiative where he helped develop LTE field trial tests. A frequent presenter and chair at wireless industry conferences, he has published many technical articles, hosted web seminars and edited LTE and the Evolution to 4G Wireless. His current standards work includes development of antenna testing methods for LTE MIMO user equipment, and he is working with other Agilent LTE experts on the second edition of Agilent's LTE book, which will include 4G LTE-Advanced.

Rogers Corp. announced that it has signed an agreement with PolyWorks Corp., North Smithfield, RI, to license PolyWorks' technology for molding Rogers' industry-leading high performance foam brand, PORON microcellular polyurethanes, into three-dimensional shapes. The agreement, finalized on November 2, 2010, stems from a multi-year joint development effort to adapt PolyWorks' molding technology to PORON materials technology, enabling Rogers to expand its PORON urethane offerings beyond its traditional continuous sheet form. It calls for Rogers to acquire a custom molding machine from PolyWorks and a license to utilize PolyWorks' technology for the molding of PORON formulations.

Maxim Integrated Products recently qualified and shipped production analog product built on 300 mm wafers. This gives Maxim a significant technology edge in the analog/mixed-signal market. Maxim is now producing 300 mm wafers using its state-of-the-art 180 nm BCD analog process technology (S18) in Powerchip Technology Corp.'s wafer fab through a foundry agreement. This achievement gives Maxim a strategic advantage in the analog market, providing a capital-efficient manufacturing model that enables quick response to changing market conditions. It extends Maxim's hybrid approach to wafer fab capacity, utilizing both in-house and outsourced wafer fabrication.

Contracts

The US Department of Defense is awarding Raytheon a $52.25 M contract modification for 19 APG-79 active electronically scanned array (AESA) radars to be retrofitted into F/A-18E/F aircraft, Lots 26-29. The APG-79 AESA radar, which will replace the APG-73 radar, will provide increased air-to-air detection and track range, increased air-to-ground targeting capabilities, longer launch range for standoff weapons, enhanced capability against advanced threats, and optimized utilization of the Super Hornet's weapons systems. The contract was awarded to Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems of El Segundo, CA. Work will be performed in Forest, MS (43 percent); Dallas, TX (29 percent); El Segundo, CA (27 percent); and Andover, MA (1 percent), and is expected to be completed in December 2013.

Harris Corp., an international communications and information technology company, has received orders from the US Marine Corps totaling $21 M for additional Falcon III® AN/PRC-117G multiband manpack radios, vehicular amplifier adapters and other accessories. The Marine Corps will acquire the systems as part of its accelerating transition to high-speed, wideband networked tactical communications. The orders were received in July, August and September.

Anaren Inc. has been selected to receive a contract valued in excess of $20 M from Thales-Alenia-Space (France) for development and production of integrated beamforming assemblies that will be deployed on the IridiumNEXT satellite payload. The contract award, expected to be finalized within 90 days, covers design services and manufacture of up to 81 beamforming networks. Work has been authorized to begin immediately, with production deliveries starting in October 2012.

ITS Electronics Inc. announced an initial $4 M contract with TECOM Industries Inc. to supply its High Power Transceiver-HPT that will enable the antenna system for a major commercial carrier's new onboard Wi-Fi service. TECOM's KuStream™ 1000 antenna system is being installed on the carrier's fleet of more than 500 aircraft. Equipage has begun at a rate of 15 aircraft per month, and will ultimately expand to 25 aircraft per month.

Herley Industries Inc. announced that its Micro Systems Inc. subsidiary in Fort Walton Beach, FL, has been awarded $3 M in contracts to accomplish changes to its aerial target ground control stations and airborne avionics for a US Navy customer. The contracts require a change in operating frequency and a major update to the company's ground control station hardware to transition to the use of laptop computers to replace aging custom designed target and master control consoles. The change in operating frequency is directed at minimizing interference issues that are sometimes encountered with the existing systems.

Integral Systems Inc. announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, RT Logic, has been awarded more than $21 M in multiple government, military and commercial contracts over the past three months, $11.4 M of which was closed in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010. Under the terms of the contracts, RT Logic will provide its proven commercial-based Telemetrix® signal processing systems that are currently used by greater than 85 percent of US space missions.

TriQuint Semiconductor, an RF products manufacturer and foundry services provider, announced that it has been awarded a Defense Production Act Title III gallium nitride (GaN) manufacturing development contract by the US Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL). The overall goal of the contract is to increase yield, lower costs and improve time-to-market cycles for defense and commercial GaN integrated circuits. The contract was awarded based on TriQuint's success and experience developing new gallium nitride technologies and products.

Auriga Microwave recently secured two contracts with Department of Defense prime contractors. The work product from the two contracts will be derived from Auriga's ongoing successful efforts within the Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program.

Demonstrating its key role in helping drive the most advanced 3G and 4G mobile devices, ANADIGICS Inc. announced that its power amplifiers have been selected by Samsung for their highly anticipated GALAXY Tab product. ANADIGICS' AWC6323 power amplifier (PA) is used in the Samsung GALAXY Tab offered by Sprint and Verizon Wireless in the United States, and ANADIGICS' AWU6601 PA powers the Samsung GALAXY Tab in the Korean market. Both PAs are part of the ANADIGICS High-Efficiency-at-Low-Power (HELP™) portfolio of products that enhance the performance and efficiency of 3G devices.

Applied Radar Inc. recently delivered a 64-Channel Analog RF Receiver Unit (ARRU-64™) to the US Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) at Wright-Patterson AFB, OH. The system development was funded through an AFRL Phase-3 Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) contract managed by AFRL at Hanscom AFB, MA, and the hardware prototype was purchased by the Air Force through a separate contract from MacAulay-Brown Inc. (MacB) in Dayton, OH.

Personnel

SkyCross announced it has appointed Ben Naskar, a wireless industry veteran, to the position of CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors. Naskar succeeds outgoing Chairman and Acting CEO, Dennis McKenna, who had previously announced his plan to retire at the end of 2010. Naskar has more than 20 years of experience in the wireless semiconductor industry. Prior to joining SkyCross, he was a Corporate Officer, Vice President and General Manager of the Wireless Networking Business Unit at Atheros Communications. In this position, Naskar grew business unit revenue by 200 percent over three years, gaining market share in all product segments. Previously, Naskar served as Vice President and General Manager of the Communications Group at PMC-Sierra.

Aeroflex/Inmet has announced that Mark Burton joined its sales team as a Regional Manager of Business Development. Burton had served as Director of Business Development for MCE Technologies prior to its being purchased by Aeroflex. He has also served in various sales, marketing and operations roles at Allan Industries, JFW, Broadwave and Trilithic. He can be reached at (734) 792-9608 or by e-mail at: mark.burton@aeroflex.com.

Rep Appointments

Paciwave Inc., a supplier of microwave solid-state switches, attenuators, DLVAs and custom integrated microwave assemblies, announced the expansion of its network of regional sales representatives with the following new representative appointments: Medeos SRL (+39 02 458 62160), located in the greater Milano area, will be representing the company in Italy. Versys SARL (+33 1 69 59 1653), located in the greater Paris area, will be representing the company in France.

Valpey Fisher Corp. announced the addition of GIGACOMP to the Valpey Fisher global sales network as its authorized sales representative for all Valpey Fisher Corp. product lines in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Eastern Europe. The cooperation between Valpey Fisher and GIGACOMP will create greater local presence for Valpey Fisher to introduce its new RF/microwave products in Europe.

America II Electronics Inc., an independent distributor of semiconductors and passive components, has finalized a global authorized distribution agreement with Aviel Electronics, a division of RF Industries. Through this agreement, America II strengthens its product portfolio and further demonstrates a commitment to its customers.

Recent Articles by Jennifer DiMarco, Staff Editor

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