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Microsemi Microelectronics Group

formerly White Electronic Designs Corp (WEDC)

click to see more info about Microsemi's rugged SSDs
Microsemi Corporation's Power and Microelectronics Group provides advanced technology solutions for the defense/aerospace electronics market.

Our core strengths include our ability to deliver sophisticated multi-chip semiconductor products, high-efficiency memory devices and the miniaturization of defense embedded systems for a diverse set of OEM primes.

The ability to address the unique size, performance and quality requirements for technology creators in the defense market has established Microsemi as the industry's customer-focused solutions provider. Capabilities include: turn-key design through production; manufacturing and obsolescence management for advanced embedded solutions; test qualification; miniaturization of existing designs; combining RF and digital onto one board; die stacking and information assurance technologies.
click here for more info re  Guardian SSD
highest integrity 2.5" military SATA SSDs
with TRRUST-Purge and AES-256 encryption
TRRUST-STOR - from Microsemi

Microsemi - addresses and links (for SSD related products)

Microsemi Microelectronics Group
3601 E. University Drive
Phoenix, AZ 85034
contact us (web form)
Microsemi (Corporate HQ)
One Enterprise
Aliso Viejo, CA 92656
see also: - Microsemi (or WEDC) - editor mentions in

Editor:- March 2, 2015 - Microsemi was ranked #16 (up 3 places) in the Q4 2014 edition of the Top SSD Companies List which is researched and published by

Editor's comments:- May 2014 - there are some segments in the SSD market where customers don't want the suppliers to be changing their values and obsoleting their product lines every few quarters.

In the embedded industrial markets, and in the military market in particular - customers want reliable SSD suppliers who are at the forefront of SSD architecture - that's for sure - but it works better for the customer if those suppliers are in control of their destinies to the degree that they understand upcoming technology changes, own most of their controller IP and firmware and if they can demomstrate that they are able to manage the spikey effects of chip market dynamics by roadmaps and by consistently improving new products while having a track record of long term consistent product availability.

That's one of the reasons I don't have to rewrite a new SSD profile for Microsemi every few quarters - just because of something we may have talked about recently. It seems to me - their products change - but the company remains the same.

Who's who in SSD? - by Zsolt Kerekes, editor - January 20, 2011

Microsemi is 1 of 35 companies in the 1" SSD guide, 1 of more than 50 companies in the military SSD market, 1 of more than 100 companies in the 2.5" SSD market and is also listed in these directories:- fast purge SSDs, SATA SSDs and PATA SSDs.

Microsemi's SSD technology business was initially based on technology developed by a company it acquired in 2010 called White Electronic Designs Corp (WEDC) - which was 1st listed in's SSD buyers guides in 2005. Everything the company does is related to the defense market.

SSDs and the Big Bang....

Now I don't know if you've ever seen the comedy sitcom - the Big Bang Theory?

It's about a bunch of physicist (guys) whose social skills - when it comes to encounters with other humans (in particular - girls) - are nowhere near as highly developed as you might expect from brainiacs with a deep understanding of the make up of the cosmos.

My favorite character in Big Bang is Sheldon Cooper (played by Emmy award winning actor Jim Parsons). When someone accidentally ignites Sheldon with a flippant technical comment or question - his response is a lecture - which goes on and on and on and on...

He takes physics and technology very seriously - and in some ways I'm reminded this is exactly what I do when I get invited to offer a "simple quick reply" about SSDs by some unsuspecting reader in an email. The way such questions are phrased can signal to me that the questioner may not know enough to ask the right question. Some people might call Sheldon's responses (in Big Bang) and mine (re SSDs) as somewhat obsessive when it comes to the detail.

But sometimes an obsessive compulsion to details (my positive definition of OCD) can be a good thing. And this is where we return to Microsemi's SSD products. Do you remember? we started off talking about those earlier on.

back to Microsemi's SSDs

I've been tracking the company's SSD products since 2005 - but even before they launched their 1st SSD - I anticipated they would enter the SSD market because it was a natural extension of their memory technology and the needs of their defense customers.

Last year I had some enjoyable discussions with Jack Bogdanski - Microsemi's Director of New Product Development about a range of detailed SSD technology design issues.

Even though Jack didn't answer all my detailed questions (some of the ways they've solved design problems they prefer to keep secret) I was impressed by the lengths they have gone to in some of their new SSD designs to ensure that they operate reliably under all likely operating conditions, that the data stays secure even if the SSD falls into the wrong hands, and that with customer supply cycles often extending over many years - Microsemi minimizes the risk of forced requalifications.

They design the controller software, they make their own microprocessors - which incidentally made it easier for them to ensure end-to-end data integrity - and they have more than a decade of experience with memories in "hard" defense (as opposed to "soft" industrial) applications.

One detail gives you an idea of how far the obsession with getting it right goes. When it came to the design of the architecture to manage sudden SSD power loss - realizing the importance of getting this right they applied more engineers to this than most companies deploy to entire an entire 2.5" SSD.

So - if you're in the defense market and - in particular need SSDs to fit into the tight spaces and environmental constraints of aerospace projects - and if you're looking for a long serious conversation about some minute aspect of the SSD design - which no-one else seems to take seriously - but which is a deeply sensitive issue for you - then the SSD people in Microsemi might be good to talk to.

But make sure you set aside enough time for the follow up reply. It may not be a quick one.

For more info about Microsemi take a look at the links above and Microsemi editor mentions in

I currently talk to more than 300 makers of SSDs and another 100 or so companies which are closely enmeshed around the SSD ecosphere - which are all profiled here on the mouse site.

I learn about new SSD companies every day, including many in stealth mode. If you're interested in the growing big picture of the SSD market canvass - StorageSearch will help you along the way. Many SSD company CEOs read our site too - and say they value our thought leading SSD content - even when we say something that's not always comfortable to hear. I hope you'll find it it useful too.
Microsemi mentions from recent SSD market history

In May 2010 - Microsemi announced it had completed the acquisition of White Electronic Designs.

In August 2010 - Microsemi announced it now offers a 16GB SLC NAND version of its PBGA SSDs - which are designed specifically for use in the rugged and demanding environments of defense and aerospace applications.

In March 2011 - Microsemi announced initial production and availability of its TRRUST-Stor a rugged 2.5" SATA SSD designed for mission critical applications in the aerospace, defense, and military markets. Security features in the new SSD include:- AES encryption with a 256-bit key with XTS, a fast purge feature called SnapPurge which destroys key in less than 30mS and hardware-based fast clear of the entire drive which takes less than 4 seconds. Uncorrectable bit error rate is one sector per 1030 bits read. Other reliability oriented features include:- Built-In-Self-Test (BIST) and power interruption protection with over and under voltage detection and protection which does not rely on super caps or batteries.

In May 2011 - Microsemi announced that its TRRUST-STOR (2.5" rugged SSDs) are the industry's first SSDs to pass zero-failure testing at vibration levels that are consistent with the industry's most severe environments.

In September 2011 - Microsemi announced it's shipping secure rugged SATA SSD chips for embedded defense applications with upto 75GB SLC capacity in a single 32mm x 28mm PBGA (plastic ball grid array).

In April 2012 - Microsemi announced it is offering a new type of ruggedized SATA connector option for its its TRRUST-Stor SSDs which provides a complete vibration-resistant solution which eliminates pin fretting and intermittent disconnects to assure long-term dependability.

In August 2012 - Microsemi announced it has achieved NIST certification for the AES (encryption ) algorithm on its ultra-secure rugged TRRUST-Stor SSD.

In May 2013 - Microsemi announced that it has secured multiple design-wins for its new Series 200 TRRUST-Stor (rugged self encrypting, 2.5" SATA SSD with 256GB SLC capacity which can do a full hardware-based erase in less than 8 seconds.

In March 2015 - Microsemi introduced its 2nd generation highly secure, rugged 64GB BGA SLC SSD - the MSM064 with anti malicious attack technology.
how fast can your SSD run backwards?
SSDs are complex devices and there's a lot of mysterious behavior which isn't fully revealed by benchmarks and vendor's product datasheets and whitepapers. Underlying all the important aspects of SSD behavior are asymmetries which arise from the intrinsic technologies and architecture inside the SSD.

Which symmetries are most important in an SSD?

That depends on your application. But knowing that these symmetries exist, what they are, and judging how your selected SSD compares will give you new insights into SSD performance, cost and reliability.

There's no such thing as - the perfect SSD - existing in the market today - but the SSD symmetry list helps you to understand where any SSD in any memory technology stands relative to the ideal.
SSD symmetries article And it explains why deviations from the ideal can matter. to read the article

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Microsemi has a new BGA SSD

and has agreed to acquire Vitesse for $389 million
Editor:- March 17, 2015 - Microsemi today introduced its 2nd generation highly secure, rugged 64GB BGA SLC SSD - the MSM064.
PBGA SSDs for rugged apps - click for more infoFeatures include:-
  • TRRUST-Purge clears encryption key in less than 30ms
  • hardware-based self destruct - renders media data forensically unrecoverable in less than 10 seconds
  • anti malicious attack technology
  • no super caps or batteries
  • write protect option for read-only applications
"Embedded computing applications have increased the need for compact small form factor, highly secure and trusted data-at-rest protection," said B J Heggli, GM for Microsemi's memory and storage business. "We introduced this latest 64GB SSD in our BGA package to expressly meet the data security and extreme reliability requirements of a growing number of embedded applications. And because Microsemi owns the processor technology, customers are also assured of critical long-term availability."

PS - also this week - Microsemi announced it has agreed to acquire Vitesse Semiconductor for approximately $389 million.

Vitesse designs a diverse portfolio of high-performance semiconductors, application software, and integrated turnkey systems solutions for carrier, enterprise and Internet of Things (IoT) networks worldwide.
It can be done - if you have control of all the firmware inside the SSD. And invest a lot of work.

How much work?

Microsemi told me (in 2011) a team of 5 people had worked for nearly 2 years on the SSD power management.
to be or not to be?
hold up capacitor extremes in 2.5" MIL SSDs
"Microsemi has had the privilege of providing high-reliability semiconductor solutions for leading edge space programs more than 55 years. We are proud that our technology plays a role in the Rosetta Spacecraft Mission and salute the European Space Agency, NASA, its partners and all of the individuals who made the mission a success."
James J. Peterson, chairman and CEO of Microsemi, in a congratulatory announcement containing the disclosure that his company had provided over 15,000 components for the 4 billion mile, 10 year mission. (November 18, 2014)
"To avoid obsolescence in military systems, the design team must ensure that the die will perform at extreme temperatures and conditions. Therefore data from external silicon manufacturers isn't assumed to be dependable and instead parts are diligently characterized in sufficient quantities over a wide temperature range."
Michael Flatley, Product Application Manager, Microsemi in his blog - Solve obsolescence problems before they start (September 2013)
Microsemi's new SSD for vetronics can erase 256GB in < 8S
Editor:- May 23, 2013 - Microsemi today announced that it has secured multiple design-wins for its new Series 200 TRRUST-Stor (rugged self encrypting, 2.5" SATA SSD with 256GB SLC capacity and fast purge).

The company says a full hardware-based erase takes less than 8 seconds. The 200 model has R/W throughput which is twice as fast as the company's earlier TRRUST-Stor due to a new generation of the company's Armor processor.

Developed to endure harsh environments the new SSD - which has hardware-implemented AES 256 encryption - can withstand up to 3,000G shock and 30G rms of vibration.
Microsemi' speeds up fast SSD erase
Editor:- October 23, 2012 - Microsemi today announced a new faster erasing 2.5" industrial SSD. The SECURRE-Stor (upto 128GB) can perform a first level software fast-erase in 0.1S followed by a fully destructive hardware erase in less than 10 seconds.

The company says applications include secure laptops, automated teller machines and other systems currently using hard disk drives that may need to be physically destroyed to prevent data from getting into the wrong hands.
Microsemi eliminates weakest link in high capacity SATA SSDs
Editor:- April 9, 2012 - Microsemi today announced it is offering a new type of ruggedized SATA connector option for its its TRRUST-Stor SSDs which provides a complete vibration-resistant solution which eliminates pin fretting and intermittent disconnects to assure long-term dependability.

"The weakest link in many embedded applications is the connector, which can sabotage the operation of critical hardware," said B J Heggli, VP of Strategic Development for Microsemi.
Military storage "Our new connector family protects against the effects of severe shock and vibration, which safeguards the flow of data. As a result, we can now offer customers what is perhaps the most secure and rugged SSD available on the market."
SSD ad - click for more info
Microsemi packs MIL SATA 75GB SLC SSD into PBGA
Editor:- September 29, 2011 - Microsemi announced it's shipping secure rugged SATA SSD chips for embedded defense applications with upto 75GB SLC capacity in a single 32mm x 28mm PBGA (plastic ball grid array).

Advanced security features include AES-128 encryption, self-destruct capability and whole-module erase with "push-button" trigger option, which are essential for mission-critical defense and aerospace applications, ruggedized mobile systems, surveillance, avionics, navigation and ruggedized portable storage solutions.

"Our ability to miniaturize microelectronics systems has proven to be a key advantage in defense applications where SWaP solutions are critical," said Jack Bogdanski, director of marketing for Microsemi. "Offering a complete solid state storage system in a compact module allows designers to add more features to their systems, while supporting key security features that are increasingly important to our defense and aerospace customers."
miniature SSDs approx 1 inch and smaller Editor's comments:- as with their 2.5" SSDs - Microsemi's new SSD chips protect data integrity from sudden power loss using a unique architecture which doesn't involve batteries or supercaps. See also:- tiny SSDs
flash SSD capacity - the iceberg syndrome
Have you ever wondered how the amount of flash inside a flash SSD compares to the capacity shown on the invoice?

What you see isn't always what you get.
nothing surprised the penguins - click to read  the article There can be huge variations in different designs as vendors leverage invisible internal capacity to tweak key performance and reliability parameters. the article
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