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ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit)

An ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit) is a microchip designed for a special application, such as a particular kind of transmission protocol or a hand-held computer. You might contrast it with general integrated circuits, such as the microprocessor and the random access memory chips in your PC. ASICs are used in a wide-range of applications, including auto emission control, environmental monitoring, and personal digital assistants (PDAs).

An ASIC can be pre-manufactured for a special application or it can be custom manufactured (typically using components from a "building block" library of components) for a particular customer application.

This was last updated in September 2005

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