Taking Root

Founder of RF SOI Solving the RF Market’s Biggest Challenges

Peregrine Semiconductor

Peregrine Semiconductor joined the Murata family in December 2014 and continues to operate under the Peregrine Semiconductor brand name. The company is a leading fabless provider of high-performance, radio frequency integrated circuits (RFICs). Peregrine’s solutions leverage UltraCMOS technology, a patented, advanced form of silicon on insulator (SOI) that enables the design, manufacture and integration of RF, digital and analog functions onto a single chip. Advancing the performance of RF SOI since 1988, Peregrine today delivers the monolithic integration and superior performance necessary to solve the RF market’s biggest challenges. 

After the Murata acquisition, Peregrine was tasked with growing its two business units—high performance analog (HPA) and mobile wireless solutions (MWS). In 2015, Peregrine added 140 new employees to support this growth initiative. 

Peregrine now has over 400 employees worldwide. The company is headquartered in San Diego, California and has offices in Arlington Heights, Illinois; Reading, United Kingdom; Seongnam-si, South Korea; and Shanghai, China. 

Founder of RF SOI

Peregrine's UltraCMOS technology platform combines the ability to achieve the high levels of performance of traditional specialty processes with the fundamental benefits of standard CMOS—the most widely used semiconductor process technology. UltraCMOS technology provides significant advantages over competing mixed-signal processes—such as gallium arsenide (GaAs), silicon germanium (SiGe), BiCMOS and bulk silicon CMOS—in applications where RF performance, low power and integration are paramount.

Celebrate the closing of the Murata acquisition of Peregrine Semiconductor.

Celebrate the closing of the Murata acquisition of Peregrine Semiconductor.

UltraCMOS technology traces its origins to United States government research-and-development innovation during the 1970s. Founders Ron Reedy and Mark Burgener were convinced RF technology needed to be built on a silicon on insulator (SOI) substrate to accommodate the performance and integration necessary for the future.

After overcoming the barriers required to make advanced SOI commercially feasible, Reedy, Burgener and colleague Graham Garcia published a paper in 1988 sharing the findings on what would become the foundation for the company's UltraCMOS technology. Peregrine Semiconductor was founded two years later in 1990 when the third founder, Rory Moore, joined. The first UltraCMOS patent was filed in 1993. The technology not only worked, but its high performance, reliability and affordability proved to be the driving force behind the RF SOI revolution. In 2004, Peregrine engaged with Murata and began a relationship that would grow and prosper over the next decade.

Solving the RF Market's Biggest Challenges

Peregrine Semiconductor is committed to solving the RF market's biggest challenges. Many Peregrine products are the first of their kind or solve an industry problem that was thought impossible. For example, Peregrine developed an RF switch to solve the cable industry's challenge of supporting DOCSIS 3.1. The PE42722 and PE42723 high linearity switches enable a dual upstream/ downstream band architecture in cable premises equipment (CPE) devices—allowing CPEs to meet the stringent new requirements of the DOCSIS 3.1 cable industry standard. These successful switches are already designed into multiple DOCSIS 3.1 certified products.

Grade school students on tour

Wafers using the UltraCMOS technology.

Peregrine's culture of innovation and problem solving has led to a legacy of industry firsts. In January 2015, Peregrine announced the True DC RF switch, the industry's first RF integrated switch to operate at DC. This switch was recognized as a 2015 "Product of the Year" by Electronic Products magazine. In February 2015, Peregrine unveiled a 40 GHz switch that set a new standard for RF SOI at high frequencies. In July 2015, Peregrine introduced the first RF SOI 300 mm technology platform, UltraCMOS 11. Peregrine collaborated with GLOBALFOUNDRIES to achieve this industry first. Accompanying Peregrine's innovative products and technology is a robust intellectual property portfolio with over 200 filed and pending patents.

Peregrine's products include RF switches, digital step attenuators, digitally tunable capacitors, tuning control switches, power limiters, phased locked loops, mixers, prescalers, DC-DC converters and monolithic phase and amplitude controllers. These products are the trusted choice for market leaders in automotive, broadband, Internet of Things, land-mobile-radio, military, mobile devices, radar, space, test-and-measurement equipment, Wi-Fi and wireless infrastructure. Peregrine has over 4,000 customers and has shipped more than 2.5 billion UltraCMOS units.

An Innovator's Paradise—San Diego

Peregrine's headquarters is located in the technology-rich Sorrento Valley area of San Diego and neighbors telecommunications giant Qualcomm. Over 85 percent of Peregrine’s employees work at the San Diego headquarters.

With an idyllic climate, 70 miles (113 km) of pristine beaches and a strong technology sector, San Diego is an innovator's paradise. The city of San Diego lies in the southwest corner of California, 120 miles (193 km) south of the city of Los Angeles and 20 miles (32 km) north of Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico. San Diego has 1.38 million residents and is the eighth largest city in the United States and the second largest city in California. San Diego is recognized as a hub for advanced research and is home to several top biotechnology, electronics, telecommunications and software companies. 

In 2015, National Geographic named San Diego one of the world's smartest cities because of its "strong technology sector, local innovators, green practices, smart public planning and an unparalleled quality of life."

Popular attractions include the world-famous San Diego Zoo and San Diego Zoo Safari Park, Sea World San Diego and LEGOLAND California. Balboa Park, the largest urban cultural park in the U.S., is home to 15 museums, numerous art galleries, beautiful gardens, the Tony Award-winning The Old Globe Theater and the San Diego Zoo.

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