Analog Devices, Inc. (NYSE: ADI) and Minebea Co., Ltd. (NMB) of Japan, a leading manufacturer of motors and machinery products, announced that the two companies have formed an agreement to jointly develop resolver systems for the automotive market. This joint- development agreement will result in new highly-reliable and high-performance resolver systems that will be offered at a lower price than commonly found in the industry, making the systems affordable and easy to use for high-volume automotive applications. These applications include electric power steering (EPS), starters/generators and hybrid electric vehicles. EPS systems have many benefits to consumers because they enable environmentally friendly vehicles and can save drivers up to eight percent on gas mileage.

Under the terms of the agreement, Analog Devices will supply resolver-to- digital converter (RDC) integrated circuits to Minebea for use with their family of resolvers. Minebea will market and sell the solution to customers in the automotive market.

A resolver is a mechanical device mounted on a rotating shaft of a motor to give the exact position of the shaft in the form of sine and cosine signals. An RDC converts this information into digital signals for the controller. ADI's RDCs perform this conversion in hardware and also give velocity, direction outputs, as well as encoder emulation.

"With the rapid advancements in control electronics and the increasing proliferation of electric motors in the automotive market, Minebea decided to invest in a strategic partnership that complements our expertise in high- volume and precision mechanical device manufacturing," said Akihiro Hirao, Director, General Manager, Office of Engineering Department, Minebea Co., Ltd. "We chose to partner with Analog Devices because the company has the integrated circuit expertise in resolver-to-digital converter technology, motor control, and DSP we were in search of."

"Minebea is a global leader in mechanical manufacturing technology and has a proven track record in high volume manufacturing," said Phil Davies, Director, Embedded Digital Signal Processor Division, Analog Devices. "We are delighted by this opportunity to collaborate with Minebea to serve the automotive market and believe that Minebea's experience in building quality, high-volume resolvers, combined with Analog Devices' record of delivering industry-leading resolver-to-digital converter technology will result in the platform of choice in high-precision motor control."

Analog Devices is currently developing two versions of 12-bit resolver-to- digital converters to use with Minebea's resolvers. Both components will be rated for automotive temperature and environments ranging from -40 C to 125 C degrees for the highest levels of quality and reliability. The resolver system sends its position, velocity and direction information via a parallel or serial port resulting in easy adoption of the new technology to existing EPS systems, enabling much higher performance at lower costs. In addition, the resolver system will interface with microprocessor-based motor controllers, including ADI's families of embedded DSP motor controllers, such as the ADMCxxx and future ADMC5xx families.

"Due to the resolver system's versatility and ease of use, we are confident that our key customers will benefit greatly by this jointly developed solution," said Nhiem Nguyen, Automotive Business Manager, Embedded Digital Signal Processor Division, Analog Devices. "Automotive manufacturers stand to benefit from significant cost savings in reduced maintenance and warranty liabilities due to the new advancements that this technology enables."

About ADI's Motor Control Solutions

As the industry's leader in motor control solutions, Analog Devices offers the widest and most advanced portfolio of motor control products available today. Analog Devices' solutions for motor control applications include sensors, resolver-to-digital converters, including the industry-leading AD2S90, motion coprocessors and embedded special-purpose DSP-based products. For more information on ADI DSP-based motor control solutions, visit

About Minebea

With revenues of $2.7 billion for fiscal year 2000, Minebea Co., Ltd. is the world's leading manufacturer of ball bearings, fan and spindle motors, and machinery products for computer, household electrical appliances, aerospace and automotive markets. With headquarters in Tokyo, Minebea employs more than 40,000 people worldwide and has 35 manufacturing plants and operations in Japan, Thailand, People's Republic of China, Singapore, the United States, Germany, and the United Kingdom.

About Analog Devices

With revenues of $1.1 billion for the first half of fiscal 2000, Analog Devices is a leading manufacturer of precision high-performance integrated circuits used in analog and digital signal processing applications. Headquartered in Norwood, Massachusetts, the company employs approximately 8,200 people worldwide and has manufacturing facilities in Massachusetts, California, North Carolina, Ireland, the Philippines and Taiwan. Analog Devices' stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and the company is included in the S&P 500 Index.

Analog Devices, Inc.
Embedded Control Systems Group
Wilmington, MA 01887
Tel: 781-937-1428
Fax: 781-821-4273
Minebea Co., Ltd.
Tokyo Head Office
1-8-1 Alco Tower, Shimo-Meguro,
Megoro-ku, Tokyo 153-8662
Tel: 81-3-5434-8637
Fax: 81-3-5434-8607