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   Technology StocksCree Inc.

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From: slacker71112/3/2018 12:46:57 PM
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From: slacker71112/4/2018 7:35:29 AM
   of 10510
These use GaN on silicon but it is still interesting to see. I wonder how many markets GaN on SiC can enter if prices come down.

RavPower’s tiny 45W gallium nitride charger almost sits flush with your wall
Here come the GaN chargers
By Sam Byford@345triangle Dec 4, 2018, 7:00am EST

I did not expect wall chargers to be a hot tech topic as we close out 2018, but here we are. Gallium nitride (GaN) is a term you’re going to start hearing a lot more of; it’s spoken of by some as a replacement for silicon, although so far that is mostly manifesting itself in extremely small USB-C Power Delivery (PD) chargers. Which, well, are cool in their own way.

Anker was the first to get much attention in this field with its regular iPhone brick-sized 27W “Atom” GaN charger, with a larger two-port 60W charger set to come down the line. Now RavPower, a similar company to Anker in that it makes a wide range of affordable, well-regarded charging products, has entered the GaN arena with a 45W charger.

RavPower’s design takes a totally different approach to Anker’s. It’s a single-port charger that focuses on thinness above all else — it only protrudes about half an inch from the wall, and the USB-C port is on the edge, meaning you can easily run the cable behind furniture or tuck it out of the way. When the prongs are folded away, you’re left with a tiny brick that’s about the size of a tin of mints and no less pocketable.

RavPower’s 45W GaN USB-C PD charger (top) alongside Apple’s 29W USB-C MacBook charger.
With 45 watts of power and USB-C PD, this is enough to charge a new MacBook Air or Nintendo Switch with ease, as well as fast-charging iPad Pros and newer iPhones. RavPower claims that it’ll charge a 12-inch MacBook in 2 hours, which I put to the test myself. I didn’t think the charger was going to make it at first, as the MacBook was only 18 percent full after half an hour, but speed picked up dramatically after that and the MacBook battery reached 60 percent after an hour then 100 percent in under 115 minutes. The macOS system report only stated that the charger was pulling 30W from the wall, however, in accordance with Apple’s guidance that higher-wattage power adapters don’t offer faster charging.

Overall, this is a great alternative to Apple’s own 29 or 30W MacBook chargers, which together with a USB-C-to-Lightning cable are also the only official iPhone fast-charging solution you can buy. The Ravpower’s footprint is a little bigger, but the design makes it easier to carry and less intrusive in actual use than Apple’s — and it delivers significantly more power to devices that need it.

Right now the RavPower 45W charger is selling for $51.99 at Amazon, $2 more than Apple’s 30W model. Meanwhile, Anker’s PowerPort Atom PD 1 is only $29.99 and will probably be the better option if you don’t need a slimline design or more than 27 watts. Unfortunately, it isn’t available just yet — it was supposed to go on sale in late November, but that doesn’t seem to have transpired.

In any case, the bottom line is this: gallium nitride technology is a game changer for wall chargers, and you can expect to see it become widespread over the next year or two. The days of chunky wall warts could soon be at an end.

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From: OldAIMGuy12/4/2018 11:26:34 AM
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Last month CREE dipped far enough to trigger a buy of some extra shares. Today, the rebound was enough
to trigger a sell of some of those shares. That generated nearly a 36% LIFO gain, if one's counting.

I now have more shares and more cash in reserve than four years ago when I started this holding. The first
three years were some low wattage but the last year has been "illuminating."

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From: slacker71112/18/2018 8:49:04 AM
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Cree's LED head departs the company in latest management shakeup

Cree headquarters, Durham, N.C.
Cree headquarters, Durham, N.C.

By Lauren K. Ohnesorge – Senior Staff Writer, Triangle Business Journal
a day ago
Another management shuffle at Cree – and this time it’s the Durham semiconductor firm’s LED products division.

David Emerson, longtime executive vice president and general manager of the unit, “stepped down” effective Dec. 10, the company said in a securities filing Friday. In his stead, four-year Cree veteran Claude Demby has been appointed senior vice president and general manager of LED products. Demby was formerly senior vice president of strategy and corporate development. Prior to Cree, he was CEO of Noel Group.

Cree has gone through multiple leadership changes since CEO Gregg Lowe arrived at the company last year.

Top lighting executives – including Daniel Castillo, then-president of the lighting division – left in 2017. As did Frank Plastina, once head of the firm’s Wolfspeed subsidiary. Earlier this year, the company announced a new CFO in Neill Reynolds, replacing longtime CFO Mike McDevitt. And in October, the company named Darren Jackson as its new board chairman.

But the biggest change has been the strategy shift. Cree, whose previous CEO had envisioned it as a lighting-focused company, is putting more of a priority on Wolfspeed, its power and radio frequency device subsidiary. Lowe has said that Wolfspeed, the smallest of the firm’s three units, would soon surpass lighting and LED products in revenue.

Emerson moved into the role of vice president and general manager of LEDs back in 2013 under then-CEO Chuck Swoboda.

A Cree representative did not immediately return a request for more information on Emerson's departure.

Cree closed Friday at $43.52, down 3 percent.

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To: slacker711 who wrote (9916)12/18/2018 9:14:44 AM
From: OldAIMGuy
   of 10510
Thanks S,
I'd missed this update.

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From: slacker7111/6/2019 5:20:50 PM
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We likely hit peak ICE engine sales in 2018. That is four years ahead of expectations at the beginning of the year.

Everything points to EV adoption being ahead of the forecast that Cree gave in February of last year.

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From: slacker7111/7/2019 5:31:08 PM
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Cree and STMicroelectronics Announce Multi-Year Silicon Carbide Wafer Supply Agreement
DURHAM, N.C. and GENEVA, Jan. 7, 2019 — Cree, Inc. (Nasdaq: CREE) announces that it signed a multi-year agreement to produce and supply its Wolfspeed® silicon carbide (SiC) wafers to STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM), a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications. The agreement governs the supply of a quarter billion dollars of Cree’s advanced 150mm silicon carbide bare and epitaxial wafers to STMicroelectronics during this period of extraordinary growth and demand for silicon carbide power devices.

“ST is the only semiconductor company with automotive-grade silicon carbide in mass production today, and we want to press forward to grow our SiC business both in terms of volume and breadth of applications served, targeting leadership in a market estimated at more than $3B in 2025,” said Jean-Marc Chery, president and CEO of STMicroelectronics. “This agreement with Cree will improve our flexibility, sustain our ambition and plans, and contribute to boosting the pervasion of SiC in automotive and industrial applications.”

“We remain focused on increasing the adoption of silicon carbide-based solutions, and this agreement is a testament to our mission,” said Gregg Lowe, CEO of Cree. “This is the third multi-year agreement that we have signed this past year in support of the industry’s transition from silicon to silicon carbide. As the world leader in silicon carbide, Cree continues to expand capacity to meet the growing market needs, particularly in industrial and automotive applications. We are extremely pleased to continue to support STMicroelectronics as we both invest to accelerate this market.”

Wolfspeed, A Cree Company, is the global leader in the manufacture of silicon carbide wafers and epitaxial wafers. The supply agreement enables silicon carbide applications in the broad automotive and industrial markets.

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To: slacker711 who wrote (9919)1/8/2019 6:02:40 AM
From: Lou Weed
   of 10510
Sweet - the materials side of the business is on a roll now. EV is the way forward for sure for SiC technology. Hopefully its adoption in this market space drives costs lower to open up the other markets that are on the cusp of seeing the value add. Gregg Lowe has done a great job since taking over -


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To: Lou Weed who wrote (9920)1/8/2019 8:43:43 AM
From: slacker711
1 Recommendation   of 10510
Previous management certainly makes Lowe look good. I never was a fan but trying to sell Wolfspeed to concentrate on lighting has to be among the dumbest corporate decisions I have seen in a very long time.

One thing I would like is to hear more from Lowe. Cree doesnt seem to go to investor conferences so there hasnt been a ton of communication from management outside of earnings calls.

I'm a little worried about the impact of the China slowdown on lighting/LED sales, but at this point, I still downturns in Cree's stock as an opportunity to pick up shares for the long-term promise of SiC.


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From: slacker7111/10/2019 8:22:16 AM
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EV's + 5G + Servers?

For most data centers, the largest operation cost is electricity. In addition, many large operators are conscious of their environmental footprint as high energy users. These two factors drive DCs to seek ways to improve their energy efficiency. One means of mitigating this growing need for power is to improve the power conversion efficiency in data centers. This can take many forms including overhauling the power distribution architecture within the data center, including changing the point at which AC power is converted to DC, the DC bus voltages and DC conversion stages and the efficiency of the conversion stages at each of these processes. Efficiency is key – it is estimated that a 1% improvement in power conversion efficiency in all the world’s data centers would be equivalent to eliminating 4.6 nuclear power plants.


This architecture has
provided a good balance of efficiency, load response and power density. However, the limits of this design are being tested with higher efficiency demands and faster dynamic load response leading to new architecture proposals. The first is to convert the boost PFC from a full bridge design to a totem-pole design. The totem-pole architecture uses only a half bridge input stage instead of full bridge followed by synchronous rectification diodes or MOSFETs. This eliminates one diode drop and provides power conversion efficiencies at high power up to 99% (up from 97.5% for the full-bridge design). However, high power levels are only achievable with this architecture when the totem-pole switches are implemented with wide bandgap semiconductors. These devices switch faster than silicon with almost zero reverse recovery loss and provide higher power densities than full bridge designs. We believe this design will quickly catch on, especially in high power applications and drive high growth rates for wide bandgap devices such as Silicon Carbide MOSFETs and Gallium Nitride transistors.

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