With the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370, British multi-billionaire, Jacob Rothschild, net worth $6 billion, becomes an owner of an important semiconductor patent along with former President Bill Clinton..
Well, truth is stranger than fiction. Follow this story, if you can. It's the story of the perfect marriage between money and power.
Freescale was one of the first semiconductor companies in the world, having started as a division of Motorola in Phoenix, Arizona in 1948 and then becoming autonomous by the divestiture of the Semiconductor Products Sector of Motorola in 2004.
In 1955, a Motorola transistor for car radios was the world’s first commercial high-power transistor. It was also Motorola’s first mass-produced semiconductor device.
In the 1960s, one of the U. S. space program's goals was to land a man on the moon and return him safely to Earth. A division of Motorola, which became Freescale Semiconductor, supplied thousands of semiconductor devices, ground-based tracking and checkout equipment, and 12 on-board tracking and communications units.
In the 1990s, Motorola’s technology was the driving force behind intelligent power switches for anti-lock brake systems, one of the first microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) inertial sensor for automotive airbags, and Motorola’s MPC5200 microprocessor deployed telematic systems for General Motors’ OnStar systems.
On September 15, 2006, Freescale agreed to a $17.6 billion buyout by a consortium led by Blackstone Group and its co-investors, Carlyle Group, TPG Capital, and Permira.
In 2011, the company launched the industry’s first multimode wireless base station processor family that scales from small to large cells – integrating DSP and communications processor technologies to realize a true "base station-on-chip". In addition, a recent ABI Research market study report states that Freescale owns 60% share of the radio frequency (RF) semiconductor device market.
Also in 2011, Freescale announced the company's first magnetometer for location tracking in smart mobile devices. On 26 February 2013, Freescale Semiconductor announced the creation of the world’s smallest (by size) ARM-powered chip.
One application that Freescale says the chips could be used for is swallowable computers. Freescale already works with a variety of health and wellness customers. Both the Fitbit and OmniPod insulin pump use Freescale chips.
The new chip was on display at 'Embedded World' in Nuernberg, Germany, from February 26–28, 2013.
The Kinetis KL-03 chip-scale package (CSP) MCU is the next world's smallest ARM Powered MCU. It is designed to support the latest innovation in smartest, smallest devices.
Simply stated, the KL-03 enables nano technology.
The KL-03 shrinks the world's smallest ARM-based MCU by an additional 15 percent.
This is astonishing.
There is no end to super-small chip applications in the defense, intelligence, and national security industries, also healthcare, and consumer and industrial applications.
Available in the ultra-small 1.6 x 2.0 mm² wafer-level CSP, the Kinetis KL-03 CSP (MKL03Z32CAF4R) reduces even more board space while integrating even more rich MCU features than previously seen in the market.
The Kinetis KL-03 CSP MCU consumes 35 percent less PCB area, yet delivers 60 percent more GPIO than the nearest competing MCU.
The Kinetis KL-03 family of chips joins the Freescale Kinetis mini MCU portfolio, allowing designers to dramatically reduce their board size without compromising the performance, feature integration and power consumption of their end products.
The KL-03 is so small that your handlers could miniaturize a GPS device and ask you to swallow it. Or for a permanently tracking application, your handlers could have the KL-03 GPS device subcutaneously inserted under your skin or injected into you. Then a spy satellite could track you for the rest of your life.
How about that for a New World Order scenario?
Big Brother could keep track of you from cradle to grave.
Scarier still, all your finances could also be on the same chip. And your medical history.
Big Brother could cut off your finances. Or deny you health care.
There could even be reconnaissance drones the size of a horsefly that could fly around and keep everything and everybody under surveillance.
Or killer drones the size of a horsefly that could terminate you with a miniscule 10 milligram dose of VX nerve agent.
KL-03 chips make this science fiction nightmare a distinct possibility.
At the time Flight 370 went missing, Freescale was being sued by Marvell Semiconductor for infringing on seven patents held by Marvell. The case is being litigated in the US District Court for the West District of Texas.
The seven patents are the following:
- 7,496,818: “Apparatus and method for testing and debugging an integrated circuit”by Azimi et. al.. Includes 14 claims (2 indep.). Was application 11/178,807. Granted 2/24/2009.
- 7,216,276: “Apparatus and method for testing and debugging an integrated circuit”by Azimi et. al.. Includes 52 claims (9 indep.). Was application 10/375,986. Granted 5/8/2007.
- 7,562,276: “Apparatus and method for testing and debugging an integrated circuit”by Azimi et. al. Includes 24 claims (6 indep.). Was application 11/800,614. Granted 7/14/2009.
- 6,903,448: “High performance leadframe in electronic package”by Sutardja et. al.. Includes 90 claims (10 indep.). Was application 10/392,436. Granted 6/7/2005.
- 7,573,249: “Power array system and method”by Sutardja et. al.. Includes 25 claims (3 indep.). Was application 11/906,084. Granted 8/11/2009.
- 7,444,571: “Apparatus and method for testing and debugging an integrated circuit”by Azimi et. al. Includes 44 claims (11 indep.). Was application 11/065,584. Granted 10/28/2008.
- 7,379,718: “Method and apparatus to manage power consumption of a semiconductor device”by Dor et. al.. Includes 20 claims (5 indep.). Was application 11/014,805. Granted 5/27/2008.
Freescale turned around and countersued Marvell, also in the Federal District Court of West Texas.
The five patents in that second case include the following:
- 5,825,640: “Charge pump circuit and method” by Quigley et. al. and assigned to Motorola, Inc.. Prosecuted by Atkins; Robert D.. Includes 23 claims (4 indep.). Was application 08/885,970. Filed 6/30/1997. Granted 10/20/1998.
- 5,943,274: “Method and apparatus for amplifying a signal to produce a latched digital signal”by Roth et. al. and assigned to Motorola, Inc.. Prosecuted by Hill; Susan C.. Includes 24 claims (4 indep.). Was application 09/016,914. Filed 2/2/1998 & Granted 8/24/1999.
- 6,920,316: “High performance integrated circuit regulator with substrate transient suppression”by Connell et. al. and assigned to Freescale Semiconductor, Inc. Includes 36 claims (6 indep.). Was application 09/946,010. Filed 9/4/2001. Granted 7/19/2005.
- 7,927,927: “Semiconductor package and method therefor”by Quan et. al. and assigned to Freescale Semiconductor, Inc... Includes 15 claims (3 indep.). Was application 09/928,737. Filed 8/13/2001. Granted 4/19/2011.
- 5,467,455: “Data processing system and method for performing dynamic bus termination”by Gay et. al. and assigned to Motorola, Inc.. Prosecuted by Witek; Keith E.. Includes 29 claims (9 indep.). Was application 08/145,117. Filed 11/3/1993 & Granted 11/14/1995
Taken together, the twelve patents involved in both lawsuits represent some of the most important proprietary technology in the semiconductor industry today.
Freescale recently lost a patent infringement lawsuit filed by Tessera Corporation and was forced to pay an undisclosed amount as part of the settlement. The verdict is being appealed.
Freescale is also being sued by Vantage Point Technology, Inc. for patent infringement in Texas Eastern District.
Freescale has also been served by Computer Sciences Corp. This is a breach of contract case and it is being litigated in the Texas Western District under Sam Sparks.
DR. SHANE DODD
The mystery of Dr. Shane Todd: In June, 2012, did a brilliant U.S. electrical engineer working on a gallium nitride-based semiconductor amplifying device with enormous industrial and strategic potential for a Chinese company, Huawei, commit suicide – or was he murdered because he knew too many Chinese secrets?
Was Dr. Todd murdered because he was becoming increasingly anxious about being asked by the Chinese to compromise American security?
Was he murdered because he had just submitted his resignation and was planning on returning to the U.S. to work for Nuvotronics, an American research company?
A coroner’s inquiry that opened in Singapore in May, 2013, to investigate the many inconsistencies and contradictions in the official coroner's report could have offered a final chance of resolving whether Todd committed suicide or was killed -- but the Singapore corner refused the FBI's offer to lead the investigation.
Also, the Singapore coroner stonewalled the five attorneys from Singapore's three top law firms that were hired by the Todd family.
U.S. Senator Max Baucus, currently the U.S. Ambassador to China, met with the Todd family in 2013. He was also stonewalled by the Singapore coroner.
Mr Todd, who was 31-years old when he died, had joined the Singapore government-backed Institute for Micro Electronics (IME) eighteen months earlier, and for the final year of his life he worked on an IME project to develop the amplifying device, using gallium nitride (GaN), a heat-resistant material with the potential to make superconductors with many possible uses in the civilian and military fields.
IME is part of the Singaporean government-run Agency for Science, Technology, and Research ("A Star") and has as one of its key collaborative research partners, Huawei, the Chinese telecom company.
Dr Todd had been trained in the U.S. on proprietary equipment that produces GaN but is restricted for export because of its potential military applications.
Two severe design issues for cellular base stations that might be resolved by using GaN technology for advanced RF power amplifier concepts. NXP's Rik Jos discusses the design flaws and the GaN solution in this link:
One switch for all internet systems...just what is needed to control the flow of all information or shut it down.
Think about it! One switch to turn on or shut down all internet systems!
HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
The patents for the Kinetis KL-03 Chip Scale MCU Package, were approved by the U.S. Patent Office four days after Flight 370 went missing.
But here's where it gets interesting. Four of the five Patent holders of the KL-03 were Chinese employees of Freescale Semiconductor of Austin TX. And guess what? All four were passengers aboard Flight 370.
The patent ownership is divided as follows:
Peidong Wang (Suzhou, China) -- 20 percent
Zhijun Chen (Suzhou, China) -- 20 percent
Zhihong Cheng ((Suzhou, China) -- 20 percent
Li Ying (Suzhou, China) -- 20 percent
Freescale Semiconductor -- 20 percent
When Flight 370 went missing, the patents had not been approved. Thus, Freescale Semiconductor would get 100 percent if the other patent holders are declared dead. Patent holders cannot pass the patent to their heirs until a patent is approved.
Stated another way, if a patent holder dies, the surviving patent holders equally divide ownership.
If all patent holders with the exception of one surviving patent holder die, as was the case with Flight 370, then the one surviving patent holder gets 100 percent of ownership.
Since the disappearance of Flight 370, the one surviving patent holder is, of course, Freescale Semiconductor.
So, who owns Freescale?
Again, in 2006, Freescale agreed to a $17.6 billion buyout by a consortium led by Blackstone Group and its co-investors, Carlyle Group, TPG Capital, and Permira.
Blackstone owns Freescale.
And Jacob Rothschild is a member of Blackstone's International Advisory Board and one of Blackstone's biggest investors. And Bill Clinton is the senior advisor to the Carlyle Group.
Jacob Rothschild and Bill Clinton. Ah, the perfect match. The perfect marriage between money and power. A marriage made in heaven.
Another bonus: With the four Chinese chip design engineers aboard Flight 370 missing and presumed dead, four important witnesses in the lawsuits against against Freescale won't be appearing in court anytime soon. Freescale may end up owning the all-important, enormously valuable, disputed patents free and clear.
The really disturbing thing? A total of 20 Freescale Semiconductor employees were aboard Flight 370. Not just the four Chinese chip design engineers, but a total of 20 Freescale employees were aboard Flight 370.
Twenty fewer employees for Blackstone to worry about. Twenty fewer employees to testify in the numerous lawsuits against Freescale. Twenty fewer employees to be bribed or blackmailed. Twenty fewer employees who were in a position to steal intellectual property or to work for a competitor, like Marvell, Tessera, Vantage Point, or Computer Sciences Corporation.
Twenty fewer people to "manage". Twenty fewer problem children.
Twenty fewer witnesses.
Flight 370 notwithstanding -- or maybe because of Flight 370 -- I bet the whole line of Kinetis KL-03 chips is already in full production and selling like hotcakes.
Does all this sound familiar?
It should. Remember Dr. Shane Todd? The semiconductor industry is ruthless, particularly when national security interests ae involved.
FREESCALE'S PRESS RELEASE
Perhaps partly as a result of our investigation, Freescale Semiconductor now admits that 20 of its employees were passengers on Flight 370 in a press release that was curiously backdated to March 8. See below.