Peregrine (Murata) buys Arctic Sand for its low-loss power converter tech

March 21, 2017 // By Graham Prophet
Peregrine Semiconductor, a Murata company and source of RF SOI (silicon on insulator, notably its UltraCMOS technology), is to acquire Arctic Sand Technologies. An MIT spin-off, Arctic Sand designs and manufactures low-power semiconductors for use in DC-DC power conversion applications.

Murata says this acquisition will accelerate its vision to revolutionize power electronics with the smallest, most efficient power solutions. Arctic Sand’s technology is based on MIT patents co-authored by Arctic Sand’s founder and Chief Scientist David Giuliano, which the company has branded TIPS – Transformative Integrated Power Solutions. This architecture enables ultra-low profile solutions with highest power conversion efficiency performance. TIPS, the company says, enables higher switching frequencies to be used with optimised conversion efficiencies which are significantly higher than leading players in the markets today – all in a footprint and profile which is substantially smaller. Its silicon enables total solution footprints to be typically 2x smaller and with 2-3x lower profile, for higher power conversion packaging density and ultra-thin platforms. The architecture also promises lower ripple and EMI, and demonstrates significant improvements in transient performance. The architecture is applicable to buck, buck-boost and boost topologies for many different applications. Arctic Sand’s website cites products for powering LED display backlighting and buck products for microprocessor cores for mobile applications; prior to acqisiton, the company was setting its sights on applications such as servers, storage and networking, and for integration to processors and ASICs.

 

Jim Cable, chairman and CTO of Peregrine Semiconductor and global R&D director at Murata Manufacturing, comments, “With this acquisition, Peregrine and Murata gain Arctic Sand’s disruptive technology, strong IP portfolio and world-class team. With a vision to revolutionize the power electronics industry, we’re building the power integrated circuit (IC) ‘dream team’. We will now leverage Peregrine’s semiconductor expertise to accelerate the adoption of Arctic Sand’s technology and their ability to ship in volume. With this acquisition, we’re one step closer to dramatically smaller, lighter, faster and more efficient power solutions.”

 

Peregrine, a subsidiary of Murata, originally identified Arctic Sand’s technology as a key component for successful development of disruptive power management solutions. Peregrine became a Murata company in Dec. 2014 and has since added