IN MY OPINION

Interconnect Advances Fuel Technology Growth
By Orwill Hawkins, Vice President of Marketing, LadyBug Technologies

With increased frequencies, higher data rates, and lower noise levels, the microwave industry serves as a leader in technological capability. Demand for quality interconnects has increased right along with other higher-performance areas in the industry.
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MILITARY MICROWAVE DIGEST


MMD March 2014
New Military Microwave Digest

ON THE MARKET


E-Band Active X5 Multiplier
Model SFA-743843516-12SF-N1 is an E-band X5 active multiplier with center frequency at 79 GHz with minimum +/-5 GHz operational bandwidth. It converts 14.8 to 16.8 GHz/+5 dBm input signal to deliver 74 to 84 GHz frequency band with more than +16 dBm power.
Sage Millimeter

Hand-Flex™ Coaxial Cable
Covering DC to 12.5 GHz, this 8” coaxial cable, 141-8SMNB+, has a bulkhead Female Type-N connector at one end and SMA-Male at the other. Features include low loss, excellent return loss, hand formable, and an 8mm bend radius for tight installations.
Mini-Circuits

Phase Trimmer Series
This new phase trimmer series is designed for RF applications where phase match between two cables is needed for proper system performance. Phase trimmers, offered from DC to 50 GHz, will give an accurate phase adjustment over a specified frequency range.
RLC Electronics

Planar Monolithics Industries
Model PTRAN-100M18G-SFB-3UVPX-MAH is a transceiver covering the frequency range of 100 MHz to 18 GHz. The transceiver fits into a 3U Open VPX form factor utilizing the high speed VITA 67 RF connector.
Planar Monolithics Industries

SMT High-Power Attenuators
Now available with full design support capabilities are three new SMT high-power attenuators from Anaren. These 30 to 50W devices are high-performance, high-power chip attenuators covering DC to 3.0 GHz and feature high return loss and small footprints.
Richardson RFPD

See all products in this issue


 

January 2014

A Case for Microelectronic Packaging and Assembly in the U.S.
By Casey Krawiec, Global Sales and Marketing Manager
Quik-Pak

Liam Devlin, CEO, Plextek RF Integration

Flexible manufacturing! Fast time-to-market! Easy communication! These are all answers to the hypothetical game show question, “What do you need from your U.S. packaging and assembly supplier?” Chip designers are often pushed to validate the performance of their new designs as quickly as possible. The time-to-market is often paramount. Validation can be a time-consuming process, especially if it takes several iterations before you are satisfied with the performance of the packaged device.

How many evening conference calls do you have to have with your overseas Outsourced Semiconductor Assembly and Test (OSAT) provider to make this happen? When millions of units need to be produced, it’s clear that the OSAT overseas is going to make it worth your while to use them.

However, when there aren’t millions of units needing assembly, as is often the case with MW and RF components, engineers in the U.S. have learned that it makes sense to have their devices assembled in the U.S. The same is true when the packaging and assembly isn’t so simple and routine. With design engineers wanting clear communication and IP protection, they don’t want to use overseas suppliers. Intellectual property protection concerns are mitigated by having a U.S.-based packaging and assembly supplier. The concern is particularly high for military customers and those customers having novel, cutting-edge technologies. In addition, the complexity of high frequency device packaging and assembly often requires close communication and special processes that only the U.S.-based supplier can offer.

There is a lot of talk about insourcing these days, with the term “insourcing” being defined as, “the return of manufacturing to the U.S.” Reasons given for the rise in insourcing include falling U.S. energy costs, rising overseas transportation costs (for both freight and travel), rising overseas wages relative to U.S. wages, and the discovery that there are a bunch of hidden costs when using an overseas supplier. What are these hidden costs? They include the time lost dealing with an inflexible manufacturer, slow response time that stretch out the time-to-market, and miscommunication that creates delays. U.S. companies like Quik-Pak, a division of Delphon, know what it takes to compete. At Quik-Pak, we’ve asked our customers what they need and they all tell us, “Save us time!” We do this by being nimble, responsive, and obsessed with clear and concise communication. If we didn’t, outsourced packaging and assembly would remain outsourced and a lot of U.S. engineers would miss dinner on a regular basis. U.S. microelectronic packaging and assembly companies have advantages, but you need to look at the big picture to recognize what they are.

Quik-Pak
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FROM WHERE WE SIT

Uncertain Times for DefenseIn Defense of DARPA; Lamenting Bell Labs
By Barry Manz

A federal agency like DARPA is a sitting duck for politicians and assorted other critics. It has come up with some truly bizarre programs over years that ultimately either delivered no tangible results, were canceled before they could cause any damage, or attempted to answer questions that nobody was asking or needed answers to. Read More...


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