Power Electronics

Shrinking Chip Size Poses Challenge

Advances in design and fabrication processes are supporting uptake of power management integrated circuit (IC) products across automotive, communications, and consumer electronics segments. Concurrently, reductions in chip size are creating a major challenge for manufacturers. New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (www.semiconductors.frost.com), World Power Management ICs Market, reveals that this market generated $9.30 billion in 2002, and is estimated to reach $12.02 billion by 2006. "Steady increase in automotive electronic content coupled with the growth in communications and portable electronic devices is stimulating demand for power management ICs," said Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Alok Tiku. Intensifying demand for personal computers and cell phones in Asia Pacific is further contributing to market growth. Moreover, enhanced applications of liquid crystal display flat panels in North America are propelling demand for switchers, thereby boosting overall market expansion. While shrinking chip sizes have factored well into customer demands, a raft of related challenges has been thrown up. The immediate consequence is the space constraint and increased heat dissipation. IC manufacturers are therefore confronting the challenge of providing the right type of package as well as a thermal system that can dispose the heat. As customers increasingly demand chips that can work on lower input voltages and higher currents, manufacturers who offer integrated solutions are likely to gain the competitive edge. Tiku adds, "Maximizing system performance and increasing functionality while minimizing power consumption will be key in the manufacturing of power management devices." As manufacturers move to optimize growth potential, an emphasis on research and development, constant product innovation, and better service standards will be crucial determinants of market success. For more information, contact



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