Electronic Design

TAOS, Inc. Announces Every Device in Each Optoelectronic Sensor Solution Product Family is Now RoHS-Compliant

December 5, 2005 (Plano, TX) – Texas Advanced Optoelectronic Solutions®, Inc. (TAOS) announced today that every device in each of its optoelectronic sensor solution product families is now lead-free and fully compliant with the restrictions on hazardous substances required by the European Union. Moreover, TAOS has achieved RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances) compliancy seven months ahead of the July 1, 2006 deadline.

RoHS compliancy is a directive established by the European Union that restricts the use of six hazardous substances in electronic components shipped into Europe. The directive will take effect on July 1, 2006. The RoHS directive requires that manufacturers be able to demonstrate minimal levels of the following identified substances:

  • Lead (Pb) -0.1% PPM
  • Hexavalent chromium (Cr +6) -0.1% PPM
  • Mercury (Hg) -0.1% PPM
  • PolyBrominated Biphenyl (PBB) -0.1% PPM
  • Cadmium (Cd) -0.01% PPM
  • PolyBrominated Diphenyl Ether (PBDE) -0.1% PPM

    For the semiconductor industry, the presence of lead in lead frames represented one of the biggest barriers to meeting the requirements of the RoHS restrictions, but that is not the only potential violation. “We started by submitting each of our devices to an independent testing lab to determine what corrective actions would be necessary to meet the RoHS requirements,” said Ray King, TAOS, Inc. market specialist. “Many manufacturers equate lead-free with RoHS compliance, but there is more to meeting the RoHS requirement than getting the lead out of your devices. At TAOS, our main concern was to not only make all of our products RoHS-compliant, but to meet our customer’s needs by making the product available well in advance of the mandated deadline. We consider that to be an important part of providing our customers with complete intelligent optoelectronic solutions, not just a light sensor.”

    One step taken by TAOS was a process change to replace tin/lead alloys with pure tin in the sidelooker, plastic dual-in-line (PDIP) and chipscale (CS) packages. TAOS has chosen to use a –LF suffix to designate lead-free products. The –LF devices are made to be a transparent replacement for the current part number. In the near term, the non –LF devices will continue to be available for customers to order as well. However, TAOS will eventually transition to manufacturing only RoHS-compliant products.

    Cadmium is another substance included in the RoHS restrictions. Cadmium Sulfide sensors have been the device of choice for many light sensing applications. However, the use of cadmium sulfide detectors most likely will create a non-compliance with the RoHS directive. All light sensors from TAOS, Inc. are silicon-based and contain no cadmium. “We believe that the TAOS ambient light sensors will provide an attractive alternative for applications in which cadmium sulfide-based light sensors had previously been used,” said King.

    All TAOS, Inc. RoHS-compliant devices are available from TAOS, Inc. and its authorized distributors.

    About TAOS, Inc. (Texas Advanced Optoelectronic Solutions) Texas Advanced Optoelectronic Solutions (TAOS), Inc. is based in Plano, Texas. Established in 1998, the company develops, manufacturers and markets leadership integrated optoelectronic products. These devices combine precision mixed-signal functionality and photo-dectors on the same integrated circuit to produce advanced products with performance and cost advantages over conventional solutions.

    More information can be found at http://www.taosinc.com or by phone at 972-673-0759.

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