Microsemi Corporation has announced that Congress has appropriated $1.8 million to allow Microsemi's Power Products Group (formerly Bend, OR-based Advanced Power Technology) to develop technology related to the use of silicon carbide (SiC) semiconductor components in military avionics applications. It is expected that the program will be administered by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL).

This commitment by the Air Force and Congress to further development of the SiC technology supports future designs of lighter and more efficient jet fighter communications systems, and will enable substantial growth of Microsemi's operations in Bend.

SiC brings several advantages in avionics applications, including increased reliability, extended battlespace coverage, point-of-use power conversion, and reduced size and cooling requirements. SiC plays a key role as battlefields becomes more networked and the demands for expanded bandwidth and high operation significantly increase.

News of the Congressional funding came in an announcement in Washington by Oregon U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Gordon Smith. According to Senator Wyden, “This commitment reaffirms the status of Central Oregon as a haven for high technology research,development and production, particularly as it relates to aerospace applications.”

“APT, now Microsemi, has been a Central Oregon leader, in terms of its commitment to its employees, and its commitment to the nation, developing technology of vital importance to maintaining a strong defense,” he said.

According to James J. Peterson, Microsemi president and CEO, “Microsemi is committed to be a technology innovator in the development of next-generation SiC products for defense and commercial applications.”

For more information, visit www.microsemi.com.