Today I would like to briefly discuss the semiconductor shortages that are continuing to effect our Industry. Anyone in the Industry should be well aware of the ongoing issues with semiconductor supply that is mainly being driven by our over reliance on a relatively small number of fabs.
Many however may not be aware of the wider impact it is having on supply chains as a whole. Wafer Fabrication, IC Packages and even packing materials have been affected pushing lead times out dramatically often in excess of 50 weeks. The pressures being put on applications as a result are understandably eclipsing everything but the most pressing IC obsolescence concerns.
From a counterfeiters perspective this market is a dream come true. Buyers being forced to look outside of established supply routes to even find components, or in attempts to skirt round the extreme price hikes. All in all this dramatically increases the risk of counterfeit devices entering customer applications, and buyers should be more cautious than ever to ensure anti counterfeit evaluations are not being over looked (to AS6081 or similar).
There is seemingly light at the end of the tunnel though as more fabrication sites have already opened alongside many more due to be opening in the next few years. This will likely result as it has done in the past with an overabundance of stock as the market overcorrects.
Force has been busier than ever during these market conditions assisting our customers with form fit and function drop in replacements on short lead times (where possible for the target component). Now is a particularly good time to qualify in a new component that is more readily available and not subject to the extreme lead times we now find ourselves in.
As always should anyone wish to have their parts reviewed drop me a line directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact our sales line on +44 (0)1264 731200.