Feel the power

As microcontroller frequencies grow, low-cost processors can manage more devices with high precision. That’s driving a huge market for actuators like motors.

In turn, that is fueling substantial growth in power handling devices like IGBTs and MOSFETs. This expansion seems to be occurring more rapidly in high reliability fields like automotive, where engineers are using small motors to move mirrors and seats in more directions. Some consumer markets are seeing a slowdown in usage as semiconductors move to lower voltages.

After talking to a lot of people in the auto and aerospace industry the past couple weeks, I’m surprised how often I’ve heard about MOSFETs and IGBTs. The guys who design cars, planes and industrial products are excited when they describe how they bring benefits. They also like to describe how they handle power in increasingly tight spaces.

Chipmakers like NXP and Fairchild are also doing  a lot to help make smaller, more capable devices. They’re combining networking and many other peripherals onto chips to continue improving reliability and shrinking size.

In many high reliability areas, these components will be one of the key components that must be considered when boards are fabricated and manufacturing processes are set up. Printed circuit board suppliers and EMS companies can gain an edge when they can help customers use power components and actuators more efficiently.


  1. Posted October 4, 2012 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a comment is added I
    get four e-mails with the same comment. Is there any way you can remove people from that service?
    Many thanks!

    • Kim Sterling
      Posted October 17, 2012 at 3:03 pm | Permalink

      Hello Nandish – I’m so sorry for the problem. It looks like you need to click “manage subscription” at the bottom of the e-mails to opt out. There isn’t an admin function that I can find.

      Kim Sterling, IPC

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