Plessey Semiconductors has announced the planned release of a number of innovative semiconductor products, including a range of amplifiers, demodulators, synthesizers and high-speed pre-scalers. These products have been designed primarily for the defense and space markets, but are also used in the general communications, automotive and industrial control market segments.

This announcement follows on from a statement issued in January 2010, which stated that the newly named Plessey Semiconductors would operate from its semiconductor manufacturing facility in Roborough, Plymouth, UK, and a technology and design centre in Swindon, Wiltshire, UK. The bipolar process technologies that were originally developed in Swindon are being transferred to the Plymouth facility.

The combination of the high performance bipolar process technologies and the 0.35-micron CMOS process provide Plessey Semiconductors with an advantage for its planned full range of semiconductor products.

Paul James, Commercial Director for Plessey Semiconductors, said, “The first Plessey products designed on the bipolar processes are now coming out of the fab with very positive results. We are ahead of schedule on the first product releases and expect to have prototypes available in Q3 of this year. This is a very exciting time for the company as the realization of our plan to transition from a foundry to a products company is starting to become a reality.”

The products that will be available in prototype in Q3 of 2010 include current and voltage feedback high slew rate operational amplifiers (PS13000 range), high-speed pre-scalers, operating at up to 13 GHz (PS15000 range), demodulators (PS20100 range), synthesizers (PS20500 range) and direct digital synthesizers (1.4 GHz -PS20614 and 1.6 GHz - PS20616).

Keith Strickland, Technology Director, commented, “We are leveraging our extensive in-house semiconductor design experience together with our expertise in process technology development and optimization. These first product releases will lead us to continue to create innovative products for defense, medical, aerospace and aeronautical applications, such as sensors, low and ultra-low power devices, imaging products, and devices for power and battery management. The 0.35 micron CMOS process with its very low dark current is ideal for industrial imaging products.

“With our recent advances in process technology and our design knowledge we will be able to extend and broaden these product offerings. We will take advantage of our high voltage silicon-on-insulator processes coupled with high precision passive components to create exciting new high precision products for the industrial instrumentation market. Our silicon-on-insulator processes offer extended high temperature operation for radiation tolerant products for space and defense as well as the automotive and industrial markets.”