Keeping important technologies under British (and Western in general) control

UK tech wise, I’m looking forward to seeing how Sabre develops.
I do know the difference - and I am sure that some else said 'microprocessors'. They are still probably made in the same places. I was going to say could programmable logic be used instead, but....

Is there anywhere in the UK, US, or Europe that makes things like microprocessors, RAM, ROM, EPROM, FPGA, and so on?

There are semiconductor manufacturers in the UK - I wonder what they do? A quick Google search finds:

Swindon Silicon Solutions - mixed signal ASICs (Application Specific Integrated Circuits)
Plessey - microLEDs.

IQE - semiconductor wafers and wafers services

Semefab - semiconductor foundry

Who else is there?
Siemens
 
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Yokel

LE
Sabre? What is Sabre?

Anyway, I thought that Filtronic made semiconductor ccomponents as part of their product range, but no. Lots of good stuff though.

I thought that there used to be some American and South Korean owned semiconductor plants in the UK? Also I thought that UK made discrete semiconductors still assisted? Power electronic components, power transistors/FETs for amplifiers, and so on?
 
Sabre? What is Sabre?

Anyway, I thought that Filtronic made semiconductor ccomponents as part of their product range, but no. Lots of good stuff though.

I thought that there used to be some American and South Korean owned semiconductor plants in the UK? Also I thought that UK made discrete semiconductors still assisted? Power electronic components, power transistors/FETs for amplifiers, and so on?
Hyundai built a semiconductor plant in Dunfermline around 1997 with a shit-ton of public money, including £20million alone for water supply. It was later purchased by Motorola (who became Freescale) who eventually sold it off in 2010 for development as an industrial estate. It lay empty for the entire 13 years of its existence.
Other semiconductor manufacturers in Scotland were National Semiconductor in Greenock (closed), Motorola/ Freescale in East Kilbride (no longer manufacturing) and a handful of other smaller places which have also mostly gone. As far as I know, Semefab are the only ones left.
 
Sabre? What is Sabre?

Anyway, I thought that Filtronic made semiconductor ccomponents as part of their product range, but no. Lots of good stuff though.

I thought that there used to be some American and South Korean owned semiconductor plants in the UK? Also I thought that UK made discrete semiconductors still assisted? Power electronic components, power transistors/FETs for amplifiers, and so on?
Hypersonic rocket engine concept. Company called Reaction Engines is working on it, along with some other projects that are attracting major investment.

Edit to add: SABRE (rocket engine) - Wikipedia
 

Yokel

LE
A welcome development from the US:

Biden orders 100 day review amid supply chain strains

US President Joe Biden has ordered officials to find ways to bolster supply chains as a shortage of computer chips hits carmakers around the world.

It comes after the pandemic has strained many producers and forced the US to scramble for medical gear.

The initial review is focused on computer chips, pharmaceuticals, rare earth minerals and large batteries, such as those used in electric cars.

China is a key supplier for many of those items.

US officials said the review was not targeted at China, which like the US imports most of its computer chips and has been trying to boost domestic production.

They said the administration was interested in increasing some production in the US and expected to work with other countries for items that could not be made domestically.

Reliance on "strategic competitor nations" is expected to be part of the analysis, they added.
 
A welcome development from the US:

Biden orders 100 day review amid supply chain strains

US President Joe Biden has ordered officials to find ways to bolster supply chains as a shortage of computer chips hits carmakers around the world.

It comes after the pandemic has strained many producers and forced the US to scramble for medical gear.

The initial review is focused on computer chips, pharmaceuticals, rare earth minerals and large batteries, such as those used in electric cars.

China is a key supplier for many of those items.

US officials said the review was not targeted at China, which like the US imports most of its computer chips and has been trying to boost domestic production.

They said the administration was interested in increasing some production in the US and expected to work with other countries for items that could not be made domestically.

Reliance on "strategic competitor nations" is expected to be part of the analysis, they added.
There's a more detailed story here on shortages of chips:
Chip supply shortage threaten OEMs amid COVID-19

I haven't seen anyone who actually knows anything about the subject saying it has anything to do with China however.

The story starts off with noting that the auto industry is suffering due to a shortage of chips. It's expected to cost the auto industry more than $60 billion in revenue this year.
Billions of dollars in earnings may be lost by automakers across the globe this year due to a shortage of semiconductor chips, a situation that’s expected to worsen as companies’ battle for supplies of the critical parts.

Consulting firm AlixPartners expects the shortage will cut $60.6 billion in revenue from the global automotive industry this year.

It's all through the supply chain, and according to a leading industry consultant the effects of this will "crater the recovery".
“All the way up and down the supply chain, everybody is out some portion of money,” he said. “This could be 10 percent of global demand this year, its impact, which craters the recovery. We don’t think we’re overstating this’’.

The shortage is due to the auto industry shutting down during the lockdowns last year. In response to this the chip manufacturers switched to supplying the companies who were making all the kit needed to let everyone work from home.
Origin of the shortage dates back to early last year when Covid caused rolling shutdowns of vehicle assembly plants. As the facilities closed, the wafer and chip suppliers diverted the parts to other sectors such as consumer electronics, which weren’t expected to be as hurt by stay-at-home orders.

The country whose manufacturers are doing this isn't China, it's apparently Taiwan as it's only Taiwanese suppliers who get mentioned as being responsible.

So if you want supply chain independence and security of supply, the country you actually need to try to isolate yourself from is Taiwan.

As a footnote, so far GM and Ford are the ones who are being mentioned as being affected by this. Toyota apparently don't have a problem as they are sitting on a four month stockpile of chips and don't expect to see any immediate difficulties.

So perhaps the actual issue is that Ford and GM cancelled all their orders and now are crying to the government about how Taiwan are being so beastly to them in not dropping their current customers and running to bail them out.
 

Yokel

LE
There's a more detailed story here on shortages of chips:
Chip supply shortage threaten OEMs amid COVID-19

I haven't seen anyone who actually knows anything about the subject saying it has anything to do with China however.

The story starts off with noting that the auto industry is suffering due to a shortage of chips. It's expected to cost the auto industry more than $60 billion in revenue this year.


It's all through the supply chain, and according to a leading industry consultant the effects of this will "crater the recovery".


The shortage is due to the auto industry shutting down during the lockdowns last year. In response to this the chip manufacturers switched to supplying the companies who were making all the kit needed to let everyone work from home.


The country whose manufacturers are doing this isn't China, it's apparently Taiwan as it's only Taiwanese suppliers who get mentioned as being responsible.

So if you want supply chain independence and security of supply, the country you actually need to try to isolate yourself from is Taiwan.

As a footnote, so far GM and Ford are the ones who are being mentioned as being affected by this. Toyota apparently don't have a problem as they are sitting on a four month stockpile of chips and don't expect to see any immediate difficulties.

So perhaps the actual issue is that Ford and GM cancelled all their orders and now are crying to the government about how Taiwan are being so beastly to them in not dropping their current customers and running to bail them out.

Are you saying that semiconductors have still been sold by the PRC?

I think (hope) that the review will be more wide ranging than chips for cars. It is time to have a look at supply chains as well as product complexity. That might be problematic with consumer products where things like aesthetics or gimmicks often influence the customer more that functionality.
 
Are you saying that semiconductors have still been sold by the PRC?
China import most of their chips. The story I linked said their auto production was going to be the one most heavily affected by the shortage, since they are the world's largest car market.
 

Yokel

LE
China import most of their chips. The story I linked said their auto production was going to be the one most heavily affected by the shortage, since they are the world's largest car market.

We live in confusing times. Do South Korea and Taiwan export chips to China?

Anyway - recycling of electronic equipment had become a sensitive environmental topic. To what extant can valuable metals and even some components be salvaged from old or unserviceable items? We brush old cars, turn them into scrap and send it to China in bulk carriers, but if recycled metals ourselves?

Just a thought. Could we draw lessons from the Second World War in reducing out usage of imported raw materials?
 
Long story short. Russia has purchased the Factory that build and maintain the ships engines for the Norwegian Coastguard and other bits bobs for the Norwegian Navy. Also has a major contract with the U.S Navy.

What is the point of a defense, if Russia is to be responsible for maintenance?
Russias biggest producer of warships, will work together with Bergen Engines.
Sorry, most links are behind a pay wall. No, I am not translating. :)

E24.no
BT.no

My first thought on this was "Who the fook thought this was a good idea?"
My second thought was "WHO THE FOOK THOUGHT THIS WAS A GOOD IDEA, and why are they not answering some very demanding questions in front of the Norwegian government?"
My Third thought was " Politicians are the biggest threat too national security bar none!" *******!

SK
 
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We live in confusing times. Do South Korea and Taiwan export chips to China?
Loads of them. China is probably their biggest customer.

Anyway - recycling of electronic equipment had become a sensitive environmental topic. To what extant can valuable metals and even some components be salvaged from old or unserviceable items? We brush old cars, turn them into scrap and send it to China in bulk carriers, but if recycled metals ourselves?
You take your old electronic tat to a recycler. The recycler packs it into a container, and when the container is full it gets sent off to the third world. The stuff gets pulled apart and the circuit boards get parcelled out to contractors who distribute them to workers in slums. The workers sit at the edge of the street and using a heat gun and metal scraper melt the solder and scrape off the chips. The chips then get a wash down with a hose and a good scrub and then laid out on the edge of the pavement to dry. They then get collected and sold back as new to you on EBay from Bob's Totally Honest Discount Electronics Supply.

The circuit boards get burned in an open fire, and the ashes sent to a metal reclamation plant to recover the gold, lead, tin, and other metals. The remaining crud gets dumped in the nearest river.

China stopped accepting imported material for recycling several years ago due to the environmental problems this was causing. The industry has moved off to the Philippines, Indonesia, and various other parts of the third world. They in turn are getting sick about all the first world crap getting shipped to them and are starting to rebel against it as well.

Just a thought. Could we draw lessons from the Second World War in reducing out usage of imported raw materials?
Britain won WWII and Germany lost WWII because Britain was able to access global markets for raw materials while Germany were not. German industry were gradually choked of oil, alloys, fibres, rubber, and everything else they needed to produce modern manufactured goods. Britain only faced the issue of shortages of natural rubber when the Japanese occupied the rubber plantations of south-east Asia.
 

Yokel

LE
Long story short. Russia has purchased the Factory that build and maintain the ships engines for the Norwegian Coastguard and other bits bobs for the Norwegian Navy. Also has a major contract with the U.S Navy.

What is the point of a defense, if Russia is to be responsible for maintenance?
Russias biggest producer of warships, will work together with Bergen Engines.
Sorry, most links are behind a pay wall. No, I am not translating. :)

E24.no
BT.no

My first thought on this was "Who the fook thought this was a good idea?"
My second thought was "WHO THE FOOK THOUGHT THIS WAS A GOOD IDEA, and why are they not answering some very demanding questions in front of the Norwegian government?"
My Third thought was " Politicians are the biggest threat too national security bar none!" *******!

SK

Two issues here - firstly can the Russian owners stop the work for the RNN and others?

The second is that of intellectual property security. I am sure that since the fallout with Ukraine, where a lot of Soviet industry was built up, Russia has not been to produce warship engines on a large scale.

What do the Ministry of Defence in Oslo think about it?
 
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Yokel

LE
Loads of them. China is probably their biggest customer.


You take your old electronic tat to a recycler. The recycler packs it into a container, and when the container is full it gets sent off to the third world. The stuff gets pulled apart and the circuit boards get parcelled out to contractors who distribute them to workers in slums. The workers sit at the edge of the street and using a heat gun and metal scraper melt the solder and scrape off the chips. The chips then get a wash down with a hose and a good scrub and then laid out on the edge of the pavement to dry. They then get collected and sold back as new to you on EBay from Bob's Totally Honest Discount Electronics Supply.

The circuit boards get burned in an open fire, and the ashes sent to a metal reclamation plant to recover the gold, lead, tin, and other metals. The remaining crud gets dumped in the nearest river.

China stopped accepting imported material for recycling several years ago due to the environmental problems this was causing. The industry has moved off to the Philippines, Indonesia, and various other parts of the third world. They in turn are getting sick about all the first world crap getting shipped to them and are starting to rebel against it as well.


Britain won WWII and Germany lost WWII because Britain was able to access global markets for raw materials while Germany were not. German industry were gradually choked of oil, alloys, fibres, rubber, and everything else they needed to produce modern manufactured goods. Britain only faced the issue of shortages of natural rubber when the Japanese occupied the rubber plantations of south-east Asia.

Recycling consumer electronics in the developing world by burning and melting the old boards in a scandal. Bad for the environment, and bad for people inhaling toxic fumes. Since it is full of expensive metals - why not recycle them here, in a proper and controlled process?

If car parts can be recovered from scrapped vehicles in a way that provides auditability, then why not high value semiconductors?
 
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1. Two issues here - firstly can the Russian owners stop the work for the RNN and others?

2. The second is that of intellectual property security. I am sure that since the fallout with Ukraine, where a lot of Soviet industry was built up, Russia has not been to produce warship engines on a large scale.

3. What do the Ministry of Defence in Oslo think about it?
1. Theyve bought a company that is directly responsible for the supply and ,maintenance of major strategic assets for the RNN. Can they stop the work of the RNN? probably not. Can they cause major disruptions if required by Moscow................
a. Im quite sure that any American contracts of a defense type will dry up and disappear "veldig fort"! (very quickly).

2. Buisness is buisness, what would you do after aquiring a nice shiny company that make Rolls Royce engines.

3. Officially: Nei da, det gå helt fint.
Unofficially : Ohh, fook! Hva i alle svarte helvete har skjedde NÅ! Har kapteinen fra ingstad fått jobb i Bergen Engines?

SK

p.s Its Saturday, I am boozing. Skål til deres!
 
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Recycling consumer electronics in the developing world by burning and melting the old boards in a scandal. Bad for the environment, and bad for people inhaling toxic fumes. Since it is full of expensive metals - why not recycle them here, in a proper and controlled process?

If car parts can be recovered from scrapped vehicles in a way that provides auditability, then why not high value semiconductors?
If a profit can be made from it, someone would be doing it.

I suspect that not enough value can be obtained from selling on second had semiconductors compared to the cost of removing them from scrap boards and legally disposing of the waste. However, it is more than 20 years since I looked into it myself.
 
Recycling consumer electronics in the developing world by burning and melting the old boards in a scandal. Bad for the environment, and bad for people inhaling toxic fumes. Since it is full of expensive metals - why not recycle them here, in a proper and controlled process?
It's much cheaper to fix environmental problems with a bribe than to prevent them from happening in the first place.

If car parts can be recovered from scrapped vehicles in a way that provides auditability, then why not high value semiconductors?
Lots of high value semiconductors are recovered in a similar way as auto parts. That is, someone prints out a certificate that says this very expensive semiconductor is a brand new production part straight from the factory and not something that was taken out of a chopped up stolen car. That of course is why absolutely nobody would think of stealing a car to chop it up for parts and selling them to repair shops or stealing the catalytic converter to sell it for the platinum metals.

Certificates and audit paperwork are easy to produce. All you need is a laser printer and customers who care only about getting the lowest price. There's no shortage of either.
 

Yokel

LE
It's much cheaper to fix environmental problems with a bribe than to prevent them from happening in the first place.


Lots of high value semiconductors are recovered in a similar way as auto parts. That is, someone prints out a certificate that says this very expensive semiconductor is a brand new production part straight from the factory and not something that was taken out of a chopped up stolen car. That of course is why absolutely nobody would think of stealing a car to chop it up for parts and selling them to repair shops or stealing the catalytic converter to sell it for the platinum metals.

Certificates and audit paperwork are easy to produce. All you need is a laser printer and customers who care only about getting the lowest price. There's no shortage of either.

I would hope that safety critical car paints and similar things are subject to ISO9001 type checks and balanced? Surely something like a bumper or a radiator can be safely salvaged from a vehicle scrapped as it is beyond economic repair?

I am talking about reputable companies in places such as the UK or Canada. Places with strong anti fraud systems.
 

endure

GCM
Hyundai built a semiconductor plant in Dunfermline around 1997 with a shit-ton of public money, including £20million alone for water supply. It was later purchased by Motorola (who became Freescale) who eventually sold it off in 2010 for development as an industrial estate. It lay empty for the entire 13 years of its existence.
Other semiconductor manufacturers in Scotland were National Semiconductor in Greenock (closed), Motorola/ Freescale in East Kilbride (no longer manufacturing) and a handful of other smaller places which have also mostly gone. As far as I know, Semefab are the only ones left.
There was Inmos at Aztec West in Bristol in the 80s. I used to work for a sub contractor who made surface mount boards for their Transputers. They were sold off to Thomson.
 
I would hope that safety critical car paints and similar things are subject to ISO9001 type checks and balanced? Surely something like a bumper or a radiator can be safely salvaged from a vehicle scrapped as it is beyond economic repair?
Safety critical auto parts? You mean like the fake air bags and brake linings made from sawdust and compressed grass that I told you about in this very thread three weeks ago?

I am talking about reputable companies in places such as the UK or Canada. Places with strong anti fraud systems.
Ah, but businesses don't want to deal with reputable companies. They want to buy the cheapest thing they can find off EBay.

Modern business makes a fetish of process and certification regardless of the outcome. The attitude is that so long as all the right boxes are ticked nobody can be criticised for picking the cheapest thing they can find.
 
Safety critical auto parts? You mean like the fake air bags and brake linings made from sawdust and compressed grass that I told you about in this very thread three weeks ago?


Ah, but businesses don't want to deal with reputable companies. They want to buy the cheapest thing they can find off EBay.

Modern business makes a fetish of process and certification regardless of the outcome. The attitude is that so long as all the right boxes are ticked nobody can be criticised for picking the cheapest thing they can find.
Exactly. ISO9001 simply allows you to define the boxes that are to be ticked. It guarantees nothing.
 
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