FAQS

WHAT IS THE GEM PROGRAM?

Generalized Emulation of Microcircuits (GEM) is a U.S Government sponsored program. GEM meets the
form, fit, and functions of the original part by meeting 100% of the performance, quality assurance, and
other requirements specified in the original part specification (SMD, M38510, SCD), and is marked with
the required part number and quality assurance symbol. GEM is operated in accordance with the FAR,
and does not compete with private industry.

WHAT IS AN EMULATED MICROCIRCUIT?

An Emulated GEM device is a mil-quality, Form, Fit, Function, and Interface (F3I) interchangeable
microcircuit. The part is supplied to the same specifications as the original device so that no parts list,
maintenance, repair or documentation changes are required.

WHAT ARE YOUR DELIVERY LEAD TIMES?

Emulated devices are normally designed and fabricated on demand. For a typical, +5 V logic family
device, turn-around time to deliver mil-screened parts is about six months after order acceptance. For
more complex or unique devices, lead time could be a year or longer. If we have residual assets on hand
from a previous delivery, we can typically ship product in two weeks or less.

HOW MUCH WILL IT COST?

Both the development and unit costs are a function of the complexity of the device to be emulated.
When a request is submitted, SRI reviews the detailed customer drawings to estimate effort and costs.
All quoted prices are established by the DLA Land and Maritime GEM Program office. In many cases, the
Emulation Program has funding sources to cover some or all of the development costs, i.e. NonRecurring
Engineering (NRE). NRE can range anywhere from $15,000 to over $2M (for extremely
complex devices). If we have previously delivered parts to your drawings/specifications, there would be
zero NRE. It all depends on the level of effort required and the unique nature of your part. Unit prices
typically range approximately $150 - $250 each, sometimes higher. Again, it will depend on complexity
and quantity.

IS GEM A DISTRIBUTOR OR BROKER FOR OBSOLETE/HARD-TO-FIND MICROCIRCUITS?

No – GEM is a DoD funded program with SRI International as the contractor for on-demand
manufacturing of microcircuits. The GEM Program recreates microcircuits from the ground up, using
specialized technology as part of a MIL-PRF-38535 Qualified Manufacturing Line (Class Q) development
and manufacturing flow. The centerpiece of this flow is a dedicated, low-volume, high-reliability wafer
fab in Princeton, New Jersey.

DOES THE GEM PROGRAM COMPETE WITH OTHER MICROCIRCUIT DISTRIBUTORS/MANUFACTURERS?

No – As a Government funded program GEM does not compete with any other accepted source(s). In
1997, DLA entered into an agreement with the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) to ensure the
GEM Program was not Emulating circuit designs still supported by the IC industry. To comply with this
agreement, all RFQ responses are routed through the DLA Land and Maritime GEM Program office that
makes every attempt to locate an alternative source. Only when no acceptable sources can be found,
will DLA authorize SRI to issue a GEM Emulation proposal on behalf of the GEM Program.

HOW MANY PARTS HAVE YOU DELIVERED?

The GEM Program has delivered over 150,000 qualified units since inception of the program. Of these
devices, there are 445 unique device types. Sales have been made to DoD entities, OEMs, and
distributors.

HOW MANY WEAPONS SYSTEMS DO YOU SUPPORT?

Over 560 different weapons systems have been supported, spanning all military branches; Air Force,
Navy, Army, and Marines.

HOW LONG ARE PARTS AVAILABLE, DO YOU OBSOLETE PARTS?

Once a part has been Emulated it will always be procurable. The GEM program will never obsolete a
part.

HOW DO YOU ORDER PARTS?

Submit a request for quote (RFQ) to either SRI or DLA. Include a procurement specification. Our
technical staff will do a detailed review of the procurement specification to verify that the part falls
within our Emulation capabilities. This review will also establish the lead time and development costs
reflected in the final proposal. DLA reviews all proposals prior to release to the customer. In many cases,
DLA will fund all or part of the development costs, particularly if the requested item has multiple
applications within DoD.

Once a proposal is accepted, non-DOD or Defense Contractors can contract directly with SRI as the GEM
Program contractor. DoD and Service customers can use the MIPR process to fund effort through DLA’s
existing contract vehicle.

WHAT IS YOUR CAGE CODE?

SRI International’s cage code for GEM parts is 0DKS7.

WHAT IS THE EMULATION PROCESS?

Click here to learn more about the emulation process.

WHAT QUALITY STANDARDS DO GEM PARTS MEET? ARE YOU QML CERTIFIED?

SRI is a fully certified (Class Q) QML manufacturer in accordance with MIL-PRF-38535. This certifies that
SRI complies with the manufacturing systems and testing requirements necessary to supply high-reliability
military class Q, class B and /883B compliant devices. All parts are fully traceable and delivered
with a certificate of conformance in compliance with customer procurement requirements. Throughout
the years of GEM production, not one part has been returned as defective. Click here to learn more.

CAN YOU HANDLE SECURE, TRUSTED PARTS?

Since 2007 the DoD Trusted Access Program Office (TAPO) accredited SRI's wafer foundry as a
Department of Defense (DoD) Category 1A Trusted Foundry. Click here to learn more. 

WHAT TECHNOLOGIES AND FEATURE SIZE DOES THE EMULATION TECHNOLOGY COVER?

We utilize Bipolar, HV CMOS, SOI, BiCMOS, and CMOS process technologies with gate sizes from 3.0 μm
down to 0.35 μm, with plans to shrink further. Our technology has been engineered to span a wide
range of original technologies ranging from RTL and DTL through the various TTL families, NMOS, PMOS,
CMOS, etc ….

WHAT IF I DON’T HAVE ANY DOCUMENTATION?

SRI has developed several techniques to recover missing technical data directly from obsolete
microcircuits using electrical characterization and physical reverse engineering processes, including a
sophisticated netlist extraction system to recover design data from silicon die. Known-good working
sample parts are required for electrical characterization, but non-functioning parts can be used for
physical reverse engineering. More information can be found on our technical data recovery/reverse engineering web pages

HOW CAN AN EMULATION BE EQUIVALENT TO THE ORIGINAL PART?

A new emulated GEM part undergoes electrical characterization to verify the performance under all
operating conditions meets the parts procurement specification.

HOW CAN I BE CERTAIN GEM PARTS ARE NOT COUNTERFEIT?

SRI is the original, MIL-PRF-38535 QML-certified manufacturer of all GEM microcircuits. The devices are
designed and manufactured on-shore in our Category 1A DMEA-certified Trusted Foundry in Princeton,
NJ. All devices are designed and manufactured to the customer’s specification, such as Source Control
Drawings (SCDs) or Standard Microcircuit Drawing (SMDs) only with the approval and authorization of
DLA. All GEM devices are marked with the SRI CAGE code 0DKS7 and are sourced through the DLA GEM
Program Office or directly from SRI International. Using the Emulation program avoids purchasing
obsolete microcircuits on the gray market and eliminates the threat of counterfeit parts. Learn more
here. Learn more here.

HOW CAN I FIND IF YOU HAVE EMULATED A PARTICULAR PART?

You can do a part number search on the GEM website or download a complete parts list. The parts list
includes over 25,000 microcircuits, including parts that have been designated as “Emulation Available”
or “Emulation Capability”. DLA also has a Standard Microcircuit Cross-Reference website. This search
provides a cross-reference of microcircuits covered by Standard Microcircuit Drawings, MIL-M-38510
specifications and Vendor Item Drawings.

HOW DO YOU HANDLE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY (IP)?

If you are referring to potential legal infringement on intellectual property in the original design, there
is no issue. We are not remanufacturing and/or re-implementing the original circuitry. Our Emulated
devices are designed using an Emulation ASIC gate array methodology. Our circuitry uses common
building blocks or circuit elements. We are compliant with the original specification without copying
internal circuitry from the original manufacturer.

If a Customer wishes to provide proprietary IP to be included in a part to be emulated, SRI follows
conventional industry practices to fully maintain the legal and confidential rights of third parties. A
Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) would be executed.