Selected quotes from our recent earnings call. Read the corporate financials news release: Rogers Corporation Reports Third Quarter 2017 Results

In Q3 2017, Rogers achieved all-time record net sales and record third quarter earnings. Net sales were $207 million, an increase of 25% over Q3 2016. Our results confirm that we have implemented a winning approach and we are clearly benefiting from our solid execution.

Over the past several years, Rogers has greatly expanded, diversified and improved the performance of our business portfolio through new product innovation; thoughtfully identified, well-integrated acquisitions; increased geographic penetration; and enhanced operational execution. Today, our products play a vital role in many exciting advanced mobility and advanced connectivity applications, such as Advanced Driver Assistance Systems or ADAS, electric and hybrid electric vehicles or EV/HEV, and the latest generation of high-performance wireless networks. These rapidly emerging markets play well to Rogers’ strengths, putting us in a great position to capitalize on the significant growth opportunity.

Bruce Hoechner, CEO, on Innovation Leadership & Growth Drivers

Our focus on market-driven innovation is helping us advance our position in a number of rapidly growing areas. One example is our Power Electronics Solutions (PES) business, where we are seeing continued adoption of our silicon nitride substrates for wide bandgap semiconductors. These products offer high thermal connectivity and reliability, which are essential for EV/HEV applications.

We view two growth drivers as key priorities: advanced mobility and advanced connectivity. These categories are aligned with the investments we are making in our technology portfolio, marketing and innovation initiatives.

In advanced mobility applications, our growth is driven by mission-critical products for the EV/HEV market as well as ADAS. In advanced connectivity, we expect future growth to come from the 5G infrastructure buildout where industry sources cite new developments on the horizon.

Bruce Hoechner, CEO, on Rogers’ Business Units

Advanced Connectivity Solutions (ACS) achieved third quarter net sales of $73 million, an 11% increase over Q3 2016. Growth was driven by applications for ADAS, aerospace and defense and 4G LTE infrastructure. During Q3, we saw a rebound in demand for both base station power amps and antennas for wireless 4G LTE applications. We are optimistic about the accelerated rollout of 4.5G and 5G, where service providers are reporting that deployments originally scheduled for the 2020 time frame are moving to late 2018 and early 2019. ADAS is another exciting high-growth area for ACS. Our portfolio supports the full spectrum of requirements for short-, mid-, and long-term sensors for features like blind spot detection and adaptive cruise control. We will continue to focus on introducing new innovative technologies to meet customer and market demand.

The Elastomeric Material Solutions (EMS) team delivered all-time record quarterly net sales of $82 million, an increase of 51% over Q3 2016. We saw particular strength in portable electronics and general industrial applications. We continue to broaden our portfolio of solutions with new design wins and applications, such as the flexible flat cable harness for clean room manufacturing equipment. In addition, revenue from portable electronics has improved, driven by a focus on new designs at many global and regional OEMs where our PORON® polyurethane has won new design wins in a wide variety of sealing applications. We are also accelerating growth in EMS by aggressively pursuing general industrial opportunities.

Power Electronics Solutions (PES) achieved third quarter net sales of $46 million, an increase of 17% over Q3 2016. These results were driven by double-digit growth in applications for renewable energy, e-mobility, and laser diode coolers. As we look ahead in PES, we will maintain focus on e-mobility applications, ranging from electric power steering and regenerative braking to EV/HEV. We are looking at significant growth in demand for these applications, and our leading PES technologies have us well positioned to capitalize in the opportunities that lie ahead.

Q3 2017 Earnings Call Full Transcript

Q3 2017 Financials Press Release

Q3 2017 Earnings Call Slides

 

This year marks the 50th Anniversary of Rogers ACS operations in Chandler, AZ, and represents Rogers 50th year as part of the Chandler business community. Join us to celebrate our shared history and success!

The Western history of Advanced Connectivity Solutions (ACS) started back in 1967, when Rogers Corporation opened its plant in Chandler, Arizona to manufacture flexible circuit materials and high-performance PCB laminates.

Today, ACS has manufacturing locations in Rogers, Connecticut; Chandler, Arizona; Bear, Delaware; Gent, Belgium; and Suzhou, China. The products manufactured at these locations are now used in a wide range of markets, including portable communications, communications infrastructure, and aerospace and defense.

As we celebrate the 50th Anniversary and our shared success story, we give special Thank YOUs to all who have made this possible: our employees, customers, and partners!

On October 27, we held an anniversary event with employees, their family and guests to celebrate the occasion with great food and music!

We also would like to extend our gratitude to the Chandler business community – our business and civic partners for their support as we have grown our presence in the region and the Western technology hub in Chandler!

 

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This post authored by John Coonrod, Technical Marketing Manager, and team originally appeared on the ROG Blog hosted by Microwave Journal.

Filter and antenna designers have long appreciated the benefits of designing distributed high-frequency circuits using defected ground structure (DGS) layouts with different types of circuit materials. As the name suggests, a DGS is a circuit in which an intentional defect or interruption has been formed in the ground plane to realize distributed forms of passive circuit elements, such as capacitors and inductors. DGS shapes are often simple resonant u-shaped slots in the ground plane, intended to enhance the coupling of transmission lines or reduce harmonics. The design approach, which can be used with stripline and grounded coplanar waveguide (GCPW) circuits, is most often used with microstrip circuit designs.

DGS circuit telements are useful, for example, as notch resonators to minimize spurious modes in RF/microwave filters. They are supported as design elements in many commercial computer-aided-engineering (CAE) software programs including in electromagnetic (EM) simulators, allowing engineers to import DGS elements to see their effects on otherwise conventional microstrip circuit designs.

While DGS elements can provide simple, compact components, including antennas, couplers, and filters, one concern long associated with the design approach is radiated energy from the microstrip circuits. Because different DGS shapes perform as resonant circuit elements, they can also act as unwanted EM radiators within a microstrip circuit construction unless properly controlled. Fortunately, such radiation levels can be minimized through the use of multilayer microstrip circuit constructions. By adding a low-cost prepreg layer with its own metal ground plane to the microstrip circuit construction, the second ground layer acts to suppress any unwanted EM radiation from the DGS circuit elements.

DGS circuit technology is not new but has been in use for several decades, limited however where radiating energy may cause problems with surrounding components or circuitry. By careful selection of DGS shapes and circuit materials, the benefits of the technology are available without the radiation issues. Sufficient suppression is provided by the isolation of the prepreg dielectric layer and the second ground plane, without otherwise impacting the properties of the top-layer microstrip transmission lines or the resonant effects of any added DGS elements. The upper ground plane, which is the primary ground plane for the microstrip signal conductors, must be spaced sufficiently from the signal conductors so as not to act like a coplanar circuit structure.

Even simple DGS shapes can provide useful signal responses without requiring elaborate microstrip transmission-line perturbations. For example, an “H” pattern etched into the metal ground plane of a microstrip circuit board can be used to produce a stopband response at a frequency of interest. Variables such as the size and spacing of the “H” pattern will determine the frequency and depth of the stopband notch.

A simple opening etched in the ground plane, for example, can be sufficient to increase the impedance of a microstrip transmission line. DGS shapes include slots in the metal ground plane, dumbbells, and meander lines. Each shape differs in terms of its ratio of inductance (L) to capacitance (C), thus having a different impact on the properties of the microstrip circuitry.

Radiation can be minimized or eliminated by fabricating DGS microstrip circuits as part of a multilayer circuit construction with three metal layers, with the DGS ground plane buried between two different dielectric layers. The top and the second metal layers of this multilayer construction are as might be found in any standard microstrip circuit, except that the ground plane is not continuous. Beneath that DGS ground plane is a second dielectric layer, followed by the second ground plane.

This type of multilayer circuit design effectively reduces any DGS-caused radiation, but it must be properly constructed to benefit from the effects of the DGS circuit elements. Sufficient conductive paths must be formed between the top conductor layer and the top and bottom ground planes for the DGS circuit elements to function properly as resonant elements.

To demonstrate the design approach, a stepped-impedance lowpass filter was designed and fabricated as a multilayer circuit consisting of two different circuit materials, with different dielectric constants (Dk). The top dielectric layer, with the signal conductors and first ground plane, was 8-mil-thick RO4360G2™ laminate from Rogers Corp., a low-loss, glass-reinforced thermoset material with Dk of 6.15 in the z-axis (thickness) at 10 GHz and design Dk of 6.4. The second dielectric layer, with the bottom ground plane, was 22-mil-thick 2929 prepreg material from Rogers Corp., material with a much lower Dk (design Dk of 2.9 in the z-axis).

The stepped-impedance lowpass filter, with voids etched into the first ground plane as DGS elements, made use of conductor widths and the two different Dk materials to achieve the impedance transitions required for the filter’s frequency response. Narrower conductors can achieve very high impedances with DGS whereas wider conductors are capable of lower impedances on the higher-Dk circuit material. Analysis of the multilayer stepped-impedance lowpass filter with DGS revealed that the use of two different Dk materials and DGS combined to provide a much sharper filter cutoff slope than a conventional microstrip filter design, with good suppression of spurious harmonics and deeper and wider stopband.

This filter is one example of how DGS can be applied to RF/microwave circuit designs. The use of microstrip DGS makes it possible to place transmission zeros in the filter’s forward transmission (S21) response curve. Placement of the transmission zeros can cause the filter’s stopband floor to be lower. But DGS circuits can be used to form delay lines and phase shifters, since shapes such as DGS slots slow even-mode transmissions, with energy propagating around the edges of the slot, changing the effective velocity of the wave and the effective Dk of the circuit.

Note: For more detail on the benefits of DGS in high-frequency microstrip circuits, don’t miss the author’s MicroApps presentation scheduled for European Microwave Week in Nuremberg, Germany at 2 pm on October 11, 2017. 

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Do you have a design or fabrication question? Rogers Corporation’s experts are available to help. Log in to the Rogers Technology Support Hub and “Ask an Engineer today.

 

Rogers Corporation’s internship program provides a dynamic learning environment where students from universities around the world are offered opportunities to work on real-world challenges and meaningful projects that will positively impact our business, our customers, and our interns.

Elastomeric Material Solutions interns Tom Brzyski and Payton Rehling in Rogers, CT.

We work with interns from a wide variety of schools, including Worcester Polytechnic Institute, UCONN, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Arizona State University, Bethany College, Michigan State University and Illinois Institute of Technology.

We are proud that many of our previous interns are now among our most valued employees!

While it is sometimes challenging for mentors to ensure interns have meaningful work, our crews rise to the occasion – not only organizing impactful projects, but also dedicating time and attention to the interns’ development throughout their tenure.

Alec Labb, Quality Engineering Intern in our Bear, DE facility, applauds Rogers’ dedication to the true spirit of internships. He writes, “Rogers undeniably goes above and beyond in the task of defeating internship stereotypes by valuing the company’s interns and providing each one with meaningful and consequential projects.”

Alec Labb, Quality Engineering Intern, in Bear, DE.

Our interns made significant contributions to several priority projects such as: creating support tools for our Footwear and Impact sales team (Bailey Gannett, mentored by Kelly Nelson), characterizing PTFE films for use in venting (Derek Mollohan, mentored by Joseph Puglisi), assisting in the certification of our new dielectric cabinet in Carol Stream, IL (Alec Labb & Payton Rehling, mentored by Don Charbonneau) and driving key corporate and marketing communications initiatives (Evan Byrne, mentored by Amy Kweder and Jill Malczewski).

Best of all, Rogers is not the only beneficiary of the program. Each intern has expressed sincere appreciation for the experience they gained and the knowledge imparted to them by their respective mentors.

Many thanks to the Rogers interns for all of their hard work and effort.  We wish them all the best and hope that their paths may cross with Rogers again!

Many thanks to the intern mentors, as well, for investing their time and energy into the talent of the future!

Rogers Corporate Marketing Communications interns Evan Byrne, Mitchell Durbin, Emily Arnold, Leslie Bernadino and Joshua Knoll at the new global headquarters in Chandler, AZ.

Consumer products intern Bailey Gannet at a “foamy” breakfast celebration in Rogers, CT.

Power Electronics Solutions interns at a summer BBQ in Eschenbach, Germany.

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A Chinese automobile manufacturer identified an issue with water leaking into the brake light of one of its models, causing short circuits and potentially a fire. The deterioration of the EPDM material originally used to seal around the brake light caused the leakage. As the material aged, its capacity to seal out moisture significantly decreased. Once water entered the brake light housing it flowed downward to the light’s battery located directly beneath the brake light module. At a minimum it would cause a short circuit, in a worst case scenarios it could cause a fire.

The OEM evaluated six options for sealing materials, among them EPDM and rubber. The selected material would have to pass two stringent tests conducted by the OEM; a water-tight test and an assembly test.

The car manufacturer chose Rogers’ BISCO® HT-800 silicone, assured that the material will provide reliable, long-term performance. They also chose to add HT-870, another of Rogers’ silicone formulations, to its material list. Find out more…

Case Study: Rogers Partners with Chinese OEM on Automotive Brake Light Gasket 

Designers can quickly find the silicone material that’s right for their gasketing, heat shield, and sealing applications here: BISCO® Silicone materials.

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