Capella Microsystems Awards TSMC Best Strategic Partner Award

SUNNYVALE--January 30, 2001--Capella Microsystems, Inc., the leading developer of CMOS photonic semiconductors, awarded their foundry partner TSMC, Ltd. with Capella’s first annual Best Strategic Partner award.

The Best Strategic Partner award is presented to the Capella partner who provides exemplary support during the production of Capella’s photodiode integrated circuits. Because Capella is a fabless company, reliable foundry partners are crucial to supplying to its customer base. TSMC demonstrated excellence in strategic advisement, process flexibility, scheduling, and technology support, which were all vital due to Capella’s unique CMOS requirements.

For example, Capella’s CMOS CM1207 integrated photodiode and transimpedence amplifier (PDIC), used in 12X DVD optical pickup units, could only achieve its 120MHz bandwidth performance through complex design efforts and special patented processes. TSMC recognized the value in supporting Capella’s CMOS PDIC solution, and allowed Capella access to tune and adapt TSMC services to produce the CM1207.

Traditionally, PDICs are manufactured using BiPolar or BiCMOS processes limiting the ability to find additional production resources. As devices such as portable electronics require higher performance and reduced power requirements, BiPolar and BiCMOS foundries have had to reach a more advanced stage to support them. Capella Microsystems believes that for a growing number of specific applications, such optical storage and infrared communications, replacing BiPolar and BiCMOS-produced PDICs with CMOS solutions will lead to higher volumes of products. The company also believes that the ability to scale circuit designs to levels of 0.25 and 0.15 microns, will lead to products that have even higher performance and lower power requirements.

“When you have a choice to use CMOS, it makes the best engineering sense, but also the best business sense because of the availability, adaptability, and sheer number of CMOS fabs available worldwide,” says Joe Kua, president of Capella Microsystems. “We truly appreciate TSMC’s taking the initial steps in fostering this new approach.”

About the Company

Capella Microsystems is a leader in high-speed, highly integrated photonic technology and innovative optoelectronic solutions. Capella adapts its core PDIC expertise to improving a wide array of applications including CD/DVD optical storage, gigabit Ethernet, IrDA, and optical sensors. The company was founded in 1996 and is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California with offices in Beijing and Taipei. For more information, visit the company website at

Contains forward looking statements.

Contact Capella Microsystems, Inc., Sunnyvale Derek Cheng, Associate Director of Corporate Communications 408-328-8344