Standards-based legacy interface solutions

Throughout the evolution of the semiconductor industry, electronics have seen nearly constant change with improvements in process technology, packaging, and manufacturing capabilities. These improvements have pushed development cycles and market expectations for continual cost and power reductions and performance improvements. The improvements are driven by economies of scale and become defined by the high volume and high-performance applications always pushing for the next node.

The challenge is that not all applications have a need or desire for this constant progression. The ability to support legacy systems and the need for backward compatibility is a primary concern in many Industrial, Energy, Transportation, Aerospace, and Military applications. Production and maintenance lifecycles are long and product qualification (or re-qualification) can be lengthy and costly.

Customers in long lifecycle markets are challenged not only by the advancements in semiconductor technologies but also by changes to industry standards developed around device interconnections and system connectivity. Some standards provided backward compatibility while other standards reach the end of their development and deployment. At this point, semiconductor suppliers will scale back and eventually eliminate the supporting products.

The industry has seen this scenario play out numerous times. Examples include the UARTS/serial ports of early systems migrating to USB, and the original PC-based ISA-bus migrating to PCI, to PCI-X, and then to PCI Express (PCIe) which is currently at version 5.0. The storage segment has seen ATA/IDE and SCSI interfaces evolve into SATA and SAS and the network segment has seen ATM and SONET standards being supplanted by Ethernet which itself evolved through 10Mbs, 100Mbs, 1Gbs, 10Gbs and continues to advance.

Below is a sampling on a few of our standards-based interface inventory:

PCI /PCIe

Ethernet

SCSI

UARTs

RS232

Token Ring

Firewire

SATA

Long lifecycle applications with products based on these and similar standards need to plan for their eventual obsolescence. Since our founding in 1981, Rochester Electronics has been focused on providing long lifecycle solutions. This is achieved through partnerships with over 70 leading semiconductor manufacturers to provide 100% authorized and guaranteed products. Additionally, Rochester can provide continuous production on previously discontinued devices through our Build-to-Order (BTO) licensed manufacturing services.

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