Military Embedded Systems

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Military IC aftermarket trends -- Q & A with Dale Lillard, president of Lansdale Semiconductor

Decades-old military platforms like the Aegis weapon system and the Patriot missile defense systems, as well as key systems for fighter jets like the F-16, continue to go through modernizations and embrace open architecture designs, but critical integrated circuits (ICs) used in these systems have not changed since they were originally designed in the 1970s and 1980s. The U.S. military relies on aftermarket suppliers such as Lansdale Semiconductor to design these components exactly as they were first built by various semiconductor companies decades ago.

In this Q&A with Dale Lillard, president of Lansdale Semiconductor (Phoenix, Arizona), he shares how the military IC aftermarket performs compared to the rest of the defense electronics market, how this market segment is impacted by the global pandemic, and the vagaries of counterfeit-part mitigation. He also provides updated insights into several controversies he called attention to in the government IC-procurement process over the years. Edited excerpts follow.