The Laboratory for Microelectronics was established at the end of the seventies in collaboration with American Micro-Systems, which funded the production of micro-circuits. Co-ownership of the Iskra Elektro-optika allowed to carry out many advanced and successful products such as mini telephone switchboard, precision scales, etc. The establishment of the cutting-edge technology of thin film integrated circuits for the needs of Slovenian industry in the seventies of the last century requested a highest level of professionalism and reliability. The fab for integrated circuits production was unique for South East Europe and an important part for developement of the defense systems for that time.
In laboratory a hybrid integrated circuits were developed with the highest level of reliability, for example, a laser rangefinder, which was the flagship product and has made Iskra elektro-optika one of the world’s top suppliers during the period of the late seventies. The first integrated telephone in CMOS technology was designed and produced in LMFE. The license for the production has been sold in the United States and Japan. The first product was followed by subsequent versions, which have won almost every continent and have been commonly produced in quantities of 100 millions. Also the design of the first 8-bit microcomputer, for the time being the most advanced one, including input-output units, program memory, etc. was done in LMFE at that time. In the eighties they developed and manufactured integrated circuits for surface-to-air missiles with superior sensor management system that can cope with the invisible stealth.
Slovenes have left a wide trail in Silicon Valley and wrote the first book on the design of mixed circuits ASIC. At the end of the eighties the members of the laboratory for microelectronics led lectures for primarily American and Japanese experts at Stanford University in California. IEEE published the first educational video cassette for design of integrated circuits-systems with analog and digital signals.
Look into the future.
Terahertz technology comes to almost all areas of human activity; in medicine as a complement to X-rays, at airports for security of people, in the food production for control of food quality, etc.
Laboratory for Microelectronics has developed one of the best currently existing terahertz sensor which operates at room temperature and is fabricated in the CMOS fab of Laboratory for Microelectronics at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering. Good properties of the THz sensor opens the opportunities for cooperation with the Slovenian, European and global companies.