Gary Lerude, MWJ Technical Editor
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Gary Lerude

Gary Lerude is the Technical Editor of Microwave Journal. Previously, he spent his career as a “midwife” aiding the growth of the compound semiconductor industry, from device to application, from defense to commercial. He spent 19 years at Texas Instruments, 11 years at MACOM and six years with TriQuint. Gary holds a bachelor’s in EE, a master’s in systems engineering and an engineers degree (ABD) in EE.

Weekly Report

For the week ending December 11

December 14, 2015

Here's a recap of last week's company, product, market and technology news:

Companies and Products

Advantech reported better than expected growth in GaN PAs for satcom, reflecting linearity, power density and size.

During the "go shop" period, 14 parties expressed interest in acquiring ANADIGICS. The board signed NDAs with five parties and released a statement that an offer "superior" to the $32 million deal with GaAs Labs is "likely." Read the company's SEC filing.

Echodyne announced the first array antenna using metamaterials, designed for X-Band AESAs. The company says cost and weight are reduced by 10x and size 5x compared to traditional AESAs.

Google Fiber invited Chicago and LA to join the 1 Gbps fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) club. While Google is getting the press for pushing 1 Gbps, AT&T is quietly deploying Gbps connections to more cities, taking advantage of Google's draft. The Washington Post tells the story.

Keysight introduced beam forming and channel modeling to EESof's 5G baseband verification library.

MACOM completed the acquisition of FiBest, a Japanese supplier of optical transceivers and components. MACOM paid $60 million for the company, adding another segment to fill out their optical strategy.

In sequence, NXP acquired Freescale after NXP's high performance RF business was sold to JAC Capital and renamed Ampleon. A new chapter in the RF power industry begins, with Ampleon's CEO making a strong commitment to infrastructure and RF energy applications and promising increased R&D.

Peregrine introduced a 1.7 to 2.2 GHz, 8-bit phase shifter with ±3° accuracy, 1° RMS error and 60 dBm IIP3. The PE44820 runs on the UltraCMOS process.

Just shy of the one year anniversary of RFMD's merger with TriQuint, Qorvo announced their manufacturing footprint for new product designs, refocusing their existing fabs:

  • Oregon will process "commercial" GaAs (largely mobile),
  • Texas will handle GaN, high performance GaAs and BAW filters, and
  • North Carolina will add high volume SAW filter processing, previously done in Apopka.
  • Apopka will continue to manufacture temperature-compensated SAW (TC-SAW) filters.

The transition will occur gradually, to honor existing customer commitments.

Southwest Antennas expanded their anechoic chamber test capabilities through a relationship with Avalon Test.

TSMC will build a 12-inch silicon wafer fab in Nanjing, China, investing $3 billion. The fab, which will be operational in 2018, will run a 16 nm process and produce 20,000 wafers per month.

Markets and Technology

Modern Society — Video generates at least 61 percent of downstream bandwidth in the U.S. Netflix is #1, at 37 percent, YouTube #2 at 18 percent.

Sources of Internet traffic in the U.S.

Sources of Internet traffic in the U.S.

Network Effect is a website that explores the ethics of apps and websites that "hook us" and often encourage obsessive engagement. The New York Times discusses the site and issues it explores.

Wal-Mart is developing their own mobile payment system, one that ties to a shopper's walmart.com account. Expect to see it in stores during the first half of 2016. Wall Street Journal article.

Using large global consumer surveys, Ericsson discerned 10 trends that are changing our lives and reflect the far-reaching influence of the Internet. This video summarized the 10.

IoT — Various wireless networks are competing to become the standard for the Internet of Things (IoT). Silver Spring Networks is proposing a mesh-based approach, which they have named Starfish, that they say has virtually unlimited reach. Wall Street Journal article.

SpectrumSatellite spectrum fared well at the recent WRC-15 conference, including decisions on bands at L-, C- and Ku-Bands.

China — November statistics show that China's economy continues to be soft. Yet I would draw the opposite conclusion by the number of cranes I saw from Shanghai to Nanjing, during my visit last week.


Update: The item describing Qorvo's manufacturing footprint was updated to add the italicized items, based on additional information provided by Qorvo.

If you come across news that you think I should include in this weekly summary, please send it to me at glerude@mwjournal.com. Have a good week.

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