Electronic Design

For Designers: Logic Nets In Transistor Cans

Logical microcircuits in transistor cans are now being offered by four major companies: Fairchild Semiconductor Corp., Raytheon Co., Philco Corp., General Instrument Corp., and Sperry Gyroscope's Semiconductor Div.

Fairchild and Raytheon are currently selling evaluation quantities of the first logical elements in their respective six-block lines—a Micrologic flip flop by Fairchild and a NOR logic circuit by Raytheon. Both logical elements are packaged in TO-5 and TO-18 cans. Philco is expected to be in production shortly on preliminary transistor-diode logic packs. Sperry Semiconductor Div. is in pilot production on NOR circuits in TO-5 cases. Units are so far only for internal evaluation. A General Instrument Corp. full adder, comprising seven TO-5 cans, will be available in evaluation quantities during April.

TO-circuit modules will be used as function blocks to build up logic circuits, such as shift registers and adders. The TO-circuit modules may be made by vacuum deposition techniques or by combining microresistors and other passive components with a transistor, all within the transistor package.

With these components, "Computer manufacturers may soon be able to realize a 90-percent reduction in size and a 70-percent reduction in cost of the computer's logic section," states Dr. Robert N. Noyce, co-founder and vice president of Fairchild Semiconductor.

Other manufacturers have been pursuing other techniques. TI, Westinghouse, and Burroughs, for example, have microcircuits in a variety of configurations. (Electronic Design, March 29, 1961, p. 4)

The race was on to pack more and more into integrated circuits. And the prophecy of Fairchild's Robert Noyce would soon be realized, probably more so than even he could have foreseen at that early date.

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