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Spotlight: TY-OHM says resisting fusable resistors is futile

It's likely you've never heard of TY-OHM. Starting life back in 1958 as a family run company in Taiwan, it's been sheltered from the mainstream attention of Europe – despite the fact that it is the pioneering force behind resistors manufacturing in Taiwan.

From its booth on the show floor at Taitronics 2014 the sheer scale of this company is made clear. The bright orange space is packed with glass cases, each showing off one of TY-OHM's many products.

From Metal oxide flameproof resistors, power type wire wound resistors, power moulded resistors, anti-pulse non-inductive wound resistors – the only way you'll see more resistors in one place is if you go stand with the student protestors in Hong Kong.

TY-OHM focuses on manufacturing resistors for power supply applications, but its approach is truly unique. Normally you'd find two types of components in a device: a capacitor and a resistor. The fuse normally functions as a safety device where if you overload it, it will break and shut down the product for safety.

Read more: Taitronics 2014 LIVE: Analysis, news and insights made in Taiwan

"Now most electronic products today are designed to be very compact," TY-OHM's international marketing manager, Joyce Chou, tells us. "and the designer usually wants passive components but has little space for a fuse and a resistor. So how can I use one component and have all the functions? This is where our products come in?"

"Our resistor provides electronics with a fuse function and a resistor function that is built into a single product, and that is our main direction."

It results in what Chou terms a "fusable resistor," and the applications are enormous. About 40 per cent of TY-OHM's revenue comes from cell phone chargers, and another 30 per cent from power suppliers, but the technology can also be found in automotives and home appliances.

Interestingly, what TY-OHM's customers want their resistors for varies depending on what country they are from.

"Japanese customers are more conservative, they get used to certain ways and don't want to try something new," says Chou. "So they still like the cement resistors, like Nintendo. It's still very popular.

"Our European customers use SMD power wire wound chip resistors. This type of SMD resistor can function like a cement resistor but also can be installed in very harsh environments like solar panels. In Europe the solar panel industry is much better than Asia."

Clearly, this is a huge market with a lot of flexibility. Check out TY-OHM's products for yourself on its site.