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Sun Microsystems Inc. Tuesday named David Yen, who currently heads the company’s storage division, to run a newly created business to develop microelectronics to sell globally.

Yen will oversee a the Microelectronics group, developing microelectronics for networking, cryptography and high-performance computing that will also serve as a supplier to Sun’s existing systems businesses, in addition to serving other customers globally, Sun said in a news release.

Jon Benson, a Sun senior vice president, will succeed Yen as head of the storage business.

Sun has been developing microelectronincs for about 20 years, including its Sparc processors. Innovations expected from the new Microelectronics group will range from high-speed networking silicon designs to the next generation of open-sourced chip multithreading processors.

Solaris running on hardware from Dell Inc., Hewlett-Packard Co. and IBM Corp. indicates that “Sun’s innovations have value and appeal beyond our own servers and storage products,” Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz said in a written statement. So, Sun wants to “fuel that same success” with its own microelectronics products.

Yen, a 27-year industry veteran, has served Sun as vice president and general manager for its enterprise server business, executive vice president of processor and network products and executive vice president of scalable systems.

Benson, a 20-year veteran of the storage industry, most recently served as vice president of engineering for Sun’s virtual storage and tape solutions business.

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