February 2009 Issue Print E-mail
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Monday, 02 February 2009 09:53
February 2009 cover


  • Cover Story
    Understanding IPC-9850
    To avoid misunderstandings, purchasers should compare the accuracy and DPMO specifications at the IPC reference speed, and should ask for reference speeds for their specific application, rather than just relying on raw IPC figures.
    By Sjef van Gastel

  • Top 50 EMS Companies
    The $50 Billion Club
    The gap between the Top 10 EMS companies and their smaller rivals is striking. But to make our exclusive list of the largest EMS companies in 2008 involves first reaching $200 million in sales.
    By Mike Buetow and Chelsey Drysdale

  • Test Developments
    The Changing Role of OEM Product Development Engineering Teams
    OEM engineering teams are being asked to do more with less on a regular basis. Result: Product development teams and suppliers see changes in the way they collaborate. A look at the types of changes likely to be driven by product development team downsizing and areas where a focused supply base can help fill the gaps.
    By Duane Benson


  • Caveat Lector
    Let's call a spade a spade. Better yet, let's not call anything "low halogen.".
    Mike Buetow


  • Global Sourcing
    In the failed cases we see in our research, the cost of replacing a supplier far exceeds savings sought by the continuous cost reductions. OEMs start spending many dollars to chase pennies.
    Jennifer Read


  • Screen Printing
    Like SMT many years ago, it appears embedded passives may be the industry's next leap of faith.
    Clive Ashmore

  • Reflow Soldering
    When solderability is causing defects, the use of nitrogen in reflow may be beneficial. For optimal cost-effectiveness, nitrogen should be applied only in the reflow areas.
    Ursula Marquez de Tino

  • Test and Inspection
    It is well documented that the farther up the production line a defect is found, the less expensive it will be to repair. These economic times leave no room for a $1 billion warranty extension.
    Stacy Kalisz Johnson

  • Tech Tips
    Excessive tarnish can inhibit flux effectiveness during manufacturing and may eventually lead to corrosion of the silver finish and underlying copper conductors.
    American Competitiveness Institute


Industry News
Market Watch
Product Spotlight
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Assembly Insider

On the cover: IPC-9850 is a basic industry reference, but doesn’t tell the whole story.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 05 May 2009 06:07


Eastern-US: China’s New Competitor?

Parity emerges among EMS Factories from Asia, Mexico and the US.

For the first time in years we see parity in the Eastern US among EMS factories from Asia, Mexico and the US. This EMS market condition will permit American OEMs (the EMS industry refers to OEMs as customers) to have more EMS pathways to choose from. Now more than ever, such EMS assignments will require deeper investigation relating to the OEMs’ evaluation of manufacturing strategies.

The Human Touch

For those who count on the electronics industry for big feats, it’s been a remarkable couple of years.



Advances in Concentration Monitoring and Closed-Loop Control

Contaminated bath water skews refractive index results. New technology can accurately measure aqueous cleaning agent concentration.

Circuits Disassembly: Materials Characterization and Failure Analysis

A systematic approach to nonconventional methods of encapsulant removal.





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