Latest Articles

BPA Consulting Evaluates Copper Trends in PCBs

In the short term, forecasted increases on the demand side for copper prices are likely to remain at least at the current level. The trend in copper usage has diverged in the fact that a number of different applications now exist.

Advanced Circuits Upgrades Processes; Invests $1 Million in New Equipment

"Our goal with this investment is to maintain 100% redundancy enabling our manufacturing plant to continue operating at full capacity," said John Yacoub, president and CEO of Advanced Circuits.

Warning: You May Be Driving Your Printed Circuit Board Shop out of Business

A crisis is looming in the PCB industry that not only threatens the profitability of OEMs and EMS providers, but also puts our national security at risk.

Yellowasp PCB Offers Intelligent Added-Value Service

In an imposing glass-fronted office building in Makati City, a dedicated group of engineering professionals provide comprehensive front-end support to printed circuit manufacturers world-wide, under the name Yellowasp PCB Services. PCB007 asked Managing Director Colin Smithson about the company, its history, its culture, its capability and its approach to the market.

China Week in Review

Wei Chen summarizes the latest news from China--Topoint Reaches Revenue of NT $176 Million in May; Cheer-time Elects Jiang Bingji New Chairman of the Board; and LH Tech Generates NT $151 Million in May.

Global Ventec Laminates - Not Just another Laminate Merchant

Now a busy industrial and commercial town set close to the motorway network, Leamington is an ideal location for distribution businesses, one of which is Global-Ventec Laminates UK Ltd. PCB007 visited GVL's smartly-presented warehousing and panel-cutting facility and asked Managing Director, Mark Goodwin, about the company.

China Week in Review

Wei Chen summarizes the latest news from China--including announcements from Compeq, Tripod, Iteq and Lenovo.

Somacis Welcomes Chinese Delegation; Strengthens Cooperation

This significant meeting is yet another step toward reinforcing the already strong relationship established between the world of industry and the international institution world, and also highlights the need and willingness of cooperation between the two--and the consequential impact it has on the economic world.

Orbotech Brings Fresh Ideas to Circuitex 2008

Bob Neves, of Microtek Laboratories, sits down with Yair Alcobi, Orbotech's Vice President, Marketing and Sales, to learn more about a new laser-based repair system that incorporates over 25 years of knowledge gained in the support of the PCB industry. Alcobi explains how laser and CAM software capabilities were integrated into one package.

Report from Circuitex 2008

In China, three key trade shows exist for the PCB industry--the CPCA Show, the HKPCA Show and last week's Circuitex, held in Suzhou, China. Over 320 exhibitors from around the world made up the Circuitex show floor this year. Show organizers reported there were approximately 20,000 visitors over the three-day show period.


The Walt Street Journal

Industry Analyst and IPC Hall of Famer Walt Custer gives his analysis and forecast of industry market conditions. You might be pleasantly surprised by his predictions for 2008.

An International Conference and Exhibition?

Pierre Emannuel Goutroube, from CIREP in Toulouse, France, dispels the notion that IPC trade shows and educational offerings are no longer relevant for overseas visitors. Goutroube traveled to Las Vegas to find more detailed technical information on embedded components--something he thought the show could definitely deliver.

Feel the Energy with Hunter

Joe O'Neil, President of Hunter Technology, discusses the success of APEX with Dan Beaulieu--calling the show a "renewal of the industry." O'Neil also relays the success of his Santa Clara, CA-based company, which includes the addition of three new SMT lines and a pool of 40 design engineers.

A Conversation with Clyde Coombs

Clyde Coombs, the editor of the industry bible, Printed Circuit Handbook, sits down with Steve Gold to discuss the inception of this book in the early 1960s to its current sixth edition--including what the latest edition covers in terms of lead-free and HDI technology.

Anglia Circuits: Three Factors Ensuring Success

Dr. Chris Thomas unveils the key strategies for success of PCB maker Anglia Circuits.

Rogers--A Material World

Michael Coll, Product Manager for Rogers Corporation, explains the newest set of foils his company is offering to guest Editor Rick Hartley. Rogers offers specialty and high-speed laminates for computer and communications applications. Coll explains that he is seeing more copper foil requests from OEM and fabricator customers--from new resistor foil technology to thinner and smoother foils for various applications.

A Laminates Lesson

Global Laminates President Bruce Hurley discusses the copper-clad substrates his company offers. Hurley says customers are now requiring other advanced materials, not readily available from Asian companies in the U.S. To meet such needs, Global has developed a joint venture with Ventec to manufacture small lots of VT-46 and VT-90 in Southern California.

Selling Productivity

Ofer Ton, President of FASTechnologies, talks with Steve Gold about the IPC Printed Circuits Expo, APEX and Designers Summit's change in venue, quality of attendees and why software is a vital--but often challenging--product to sell at a trade show where many people come to "kick the tires."

Young at Heart: New Horizons for Well-Established Chemcut Corporation

Kirk Lauver, Technical Marketing Specialist with Chemcut Corporation, sits down with Ray Rasmussen to discuss his company's progress over the past year and his thoughts on the current market. Lauver also explains the company's added cleaning applications for solar equipment and LCDs, plus a few major enhancements to Chemcut's CC8000 line of etching equipment.

Inside the PCB Executive Management Meetings

An interview with Bare Board Group (BBG) CEO Greg Papendrew reveals what topics were covered at the PCB Executive Management Meetings during the IPC Printed Circuits Expo, APEX and the Designers Summit 2008. The meetings, according to Papendrew, were a fantastic networking and learning opportunity for those in attendance--a way to find out what others are doing to be successful in the current market.


The Key to Low-Cost Solar Cells: Thinner Than a Human Hair?

While thin film technologies receive worldwide attention with their potential to lower the cost of solar energy, some researchers are thinking outside the box and looking into different approaches--resulting in cost reductions for photovoltaic technologies.

A Las Vegas Review

Though most exhibitors expressed enthusiasm for the IPC Printed Circuits Expo, APEX and the Designers Summit 2008 in Las Vegas, Mania Technologie's Vice President, Stuart Hayton, raises some genuine concerns about not only competing with other exhibitors, but also with a city that never sleeps.

NRC Committee on Manufacturing Trends in Printed Circuit Board Technology Recommendations

The Conference Report (H. Rept. 109-702) to H.R. 5122, the John Warner National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007, directed the Secretary of Defense to provide a report on the implementation of the recommendations of the National Research Council (NRC) Committee in Manufacturing Trends in Printed Circuit Board (PrCB) Technology to the House and Senate Armed Services Committees.

Coretec's Gareth Perry Focuses on Advanced Technologies

Coretec's Chief Technology Officer, Gareth Perry, explains talks with Steve Gold about the PCB Management Meetings focus on emerging technologies--a new twist on what had been more marketing-oriented meetings.

CCA Update: Sacramento Day, Schwarzenegger Top Agenda

California Circuits Association's Executive Director Richard Crowe discusses what his organization is planning over the next six months. Highlights of the interview include Sacramento Day, a lobbying visit with the California Chamber of Commerce on May 20, 2008 to push the state to be more "business-friendly," and the SMTA/IPC Golf Tournament coming up in June.

The Consolidation of Global PCB Industries

Rex Rosario, CEO of Graphic PLC, talks about the consolidation of global PCB industries. He answers the question of what such a collaboration will achieve for U.S. and European companies moving forward in current markets. Find out how coming together will make companies stronger and more efficient.

Is China Losing its Luster?

Dan Beaulieu, a well-known industry writer and columnist, offers his opinion on the industry in China. Higher wages, water and energy issues, employee turnover and shipping costs are all taking their toll on the Chinese electronics manufacturing sector. Will it help North American businesses?

The Best of the PCB Industry: IPC Innovative Technology Center Winners

We're highlighting the PCB industry winners of the IPC Innovative Technology Center Award--find out why each won this exciting recognition.

Robots will Play an Integral Role in the Future of the Human Race

MIT professor of Robotics and co-founder of iRobot (Roomba), Rodney Brooks provided the keynote at the opening of the IPC Expo, APEX and Designers Summit Tuesday morning in Las Vegas. Brooks provides a summary of his keynote presentation which looks at the current state of Robotics technologies and also looks at where Robotics is headed.

In the Beginning: How IPC Started a Successful Tradeshow

IPC Hall of Famer Jerry Siegmund takes us back to 1994, when IPC started its first Printed Circuits Expo. Find out how the exhibition began--despite the protests of IPC board members.


Video: EI Drives PCB Technology, Focuses on High-end US Markets

James Wilson, Endicott Interconnect Technology Product Manager for Printed Circuit Boards talks about the company's PCB business today and where it's headed. EI has implemented substantial R&D efforts that are helping the company develop some world-beating technologies to support their customer base.

Video: IPC Addressing Board Storage and Certification for PCB Companies

TAEC Chairman, Don Dupriest, Lockheed Martin, and his committees are working on standards for PCB storage as well as an IPC certification for PCB companies.

IPC Begins to Tackle Counterfeiting

Counterfeiting in electronics is causing enough concern for IPC to offer a Free Forum on the subject. Forum Chair Denny Fritz and Bob Neves join Steve Gold to discuss what could become one of the biggest issues facing our industry.

North American Fabricators Look for New Market Opportunities

What markets should companies be pursuing? According to Bob Clarke, FTG, fabricators are talking more with each other to better define which end markets will prove lucrative in the future.

Video: Sierra Circuits Discusses Their Micro Electronics and HDI Capabilities

Dale Baird, GM for Sierra Micro Electronics and Amit Bahl, HDI Manager for Sierra Proto Express, discuss the technologies driving their business.

Video - Terry Heilman, Sunstone Circuits: How to Beat a Flat North American Market

Once you admit a PCB is a commodity, then you can address how to succeed in a tough manufacturing environment. At least that's what Sunstone CEO Terry Heilman believes. His interview reveals other strategies for success in a flat fab market.

Video Interview: Dupont's Karl Dietz Talks About Embedded Materials

One of the industry's premier technologists, Dupont's Karl Dietz makes his video interview debut for a discussion of embedded materials technology aimed at packaging substrates.

Eltek Achieves Strong Sequential Revenue Growth in the 4Q

Revenue growth in the fourth quarter was driven, in part, by continued penetration of the high-end PCB market in the U.S. This market includes customers in the aerospace, industrial and medical industries who have growing demands for Eltek's flex-rigid capabilities.

Video: Beamind's Christophe Vauche Talks About His Contactless Test System

Beamind COO talks with Bob Neves last week at the CPCA Show in Shanghai, China. Christophe discusses the test issues facing the industry and the solution his company provides.

iNEMI Schedules Three Industry Workshops for 2009 Roadmap

The International Electronics Manufacturing Initiative (iNEMI) has scheduled three regional workshops to give the industry an opportunity to review "work in progress" on the 2009 Roadmap.


The Gold Record: CPCA Show Review

Bob Neves joins Steve Gold as the two review what was (not) new in Shanghai and examine some issues the Chinese market will be grappling with this year--including a need for stronger domestic engineering skills.

Video: Camtek's Issey Endey Discusses the Challenges in the Chinese PCB Market

The Camtek China president offers important insights into the current state of industry affairs in China. Do not miss this honest assessment of the Chinese market.

Is There a Fundamental Disconnect in the Chinese PCB Industry?

For years, the rapid growth of the Chinese PCB industry has masked a funadmental flaw in the way boards are being built in China. Now, with rapidly rising costs, the structural flaws are becoming more apparent.

ECWC 11 Kicks Off in Shanghai

The 11th meeting of the World Electronic Circuits Council kicked off today at the Everbright Hotel in Shanghai. The ECWC 11 Opening Ceremony featured dignitaries from around the world speaking to over 700 attendees.

Price Fall on CCL Benefited PCB Makers but Hurt CCL Makers in February

Coming from price hikes in the second half of last year, CCL prices has been going down since the beginning of this year.

Video: Universal Circuits Installs MacDermid's New Direct Plate System

Driven by the need for a more efficient and flexible process for metalizing holes, Universal Circuits has been working with MacDermid to launch a new replacement for its electroless copper process.

Taiwan Third Tier PCB Maker Lei An Suffering a Financial Crisis

Stiff competition from expanding first-tier PCB makers in Taiwan are causing third-tier makers to struggle due to their smaller niche markets.

High-End Complex PCB Production Requires Multitechnology System Checks

As the complexity, density, and cost of printed-circuit boards continues to escalate-particularly related to embedded electronics for medical and other real-time critical systems-so does the cost of reworking defective boards.

LG Electronics Trades PCB Business to...LG

LG Electronics' PCB division will be exchanged with its affiliate LG Micron's plasma rear panel (PRP) division.

Unitech to Invest An Additional $20M in Shanghai Plant

Unitech announced an additional investment of $20 million in its Shanghai plant, not only to expand the capacity to 550 thousand square feet monthly but also to improve the HDI manufacturing process technology.


R&D Circuits Acquires Interest in Anestel

"R&D Circuits and Anestel already work closely together. This enhanced relationship will allow both of us to improve our ability to meet the unique needs of our customers."

Continued Strength in the PCB Market Boosted TTM's Revenue; Q4 Up 44%

"PCB manufacturing continued its strong contribution to the quarter's results, attributable to our Aerospace/Defense customers as well as strong demand for our high tech manufacturing services," said Alder.

AT&S Posts Strongest Sales for First Nine Months in Its History

With revenues of EUR 368.3m and net profit of EUR 33.3m in the first three quarters of financial 2007/08, AT&S continues its strong growth performance.

Handset and Notebook PCB Industries See Dropping Orders

Notebook and handset printed circuit board (PCB) makers are facing low order visibility for the first quarter of 2008 which is expected to affect their first quarter revenues by 10-15% or possibly even 15-20% or more.

DDi's Fourth Quarter 2007 Revenue Up 4 Percent

"The Company's fourth quarter 2007 net sales increased 4 percent sequentially and year over year to $45 million with expected adjusted EBITDA greater than 10 percent of net sales.

Handset PCB Makers Brace for Sharper-than-expected Sales Decline

With the handset industry being hit by weaker-than-expected demand, handset printed circuit board (PCB) makers are bracing for a sharp fall in first-quarter sales

Endicott Interconnect Technologies Fabricates Award Winning Printed Circuit Board

Endicott Interconnect Technologies has fabricated an award winning PCB for IBM Zurich Research Laboratory to be used in the world's most powerful and advanced optical packet switch, this controller board functions as the intelligence of the switch.

IC Substrate Makers to See Revenues Drop at Varied Rates in 1Q08

The major Taiwan IC substrate makers, including Kinsus Interconnect Technology, Nanya Printed Circuit Board (NPC) and Phoenix Precision Technology (PPT), are expected to see their revenues decline at varied rates in the first quarter of 2008 due to different product mixes

Leicester Circuits UK Limited Acquired

"After acquiring the hi-tech PCB shop Circast four years ago, I've been looking to purchase another big player within the UK to help boost the groups portfolio and also gain the China import experience."

OM Group Completes Acquisition of Electronics Businesses From Rockwood Holdings

OM Group has completed its previously announced acquisition of the electronics businesses from Rockwood Holdings for approximately $315 million in cash.


ASE Suspends FC Substrate Expansion Plan

Oversupply in the market has prompted ASE to suspend its plans to expand its flip-chip substrate capacity.

Video: Michael Gay, Director of Emerging Products for Isola

Michael Gay, Director of Emerging Products for Isola discusses the challenges of creating laminates for lead-free assembly with Joe Fjelstad and explains ways that Isola is addressing customer needs.

Reducing Cost With Real-Time Drill Room Data

This paper outlines specific features and benefits of implementing monitoring software to collect and analyze real-time shop floor data from drill and rout CNC machines.

VIDEO: RBP Chemicals Pushes into India

An interview with RBP Chemicals President Mark Kannenberg reveals why the company is choosing India over China as the center of its global expansion plans.

VIDEO: Teknek Completes a Year of Transition

An interview with Managing Director Stephen Mitchell covers changes made during the first year of his tenure. Mitchell discusses how his company manages to build in Europe while sales increases are mainly in Asia.

VIDEO: Understanding Elcoteq's Growth Strategy

An interview with Elcoteq Director of Corporate Strategy Carsten Barth reveals how the company balances regional expansion plans with the needs of its global telecommunications customers.

Aspocomp and Meadville Restructuring Agreement Completed

The closing of the business restructuring agreement signed by Aspocomp Group Oyj and Meadville Holdings Limited on November 8, 2007, has been completed.

Video: An Interview with WKK Distribution's Hamed El-Abd

One of China's largest distributors WKK is uniquely positioned to understand the many nuances and characteristics of the China market. Hamed El-Abd, company president knows the Chinese market better than most.

VIDEO: Exclusive HKPCA & IPC Show 2007 Opening Ceremony Footage

A video review of the HKPCA & IPC Show 2007 Opening Ceremony. Footage includes important facts and figures about the exhibition, excerpts of of dignitary speeches, and a colorful ribbon cutting complete with dragon dancers.

VIDEO: Printar CEO Discusses New Inkjet Solder Mask Machine

After unveiling the GreenJet digital solder mask printing machine, Printar CEO Amir Noy discusses the details with I-Connect007 Editor Steve Gold.


Titan Completes Acquisition of Nexus Nano Assets

The surrender of assets was completed by agreement between Nexus as debtor and Titan as creditor.

Battery Shortages Dampen Near-term Prospects of Notebook PCB Sales in 2008

The effects of the shortage of notebook-use batteries is spreading to printed circuit board (PCB) makers including Hannstar Board and Gold Circuit Electronics (GCE).

Time for the Electronics Industry to Clean Up Its Act?

As track and gap widths become smaller and layer counts become higher the problem of contamination in the electronics industry has become more acute.

China Week in Review

APCB Kunshan Plant to Double Production Capacity Next Year; Taxation Policy Changes in Mainland China to Adversely Affect Taiwan Companies' Profits; Shanghai Printronics' Songjiang Plant Commences Operation; IC Substrate Orders to Boost Nanya PCB's Performance in November; Unimicron Hit a New High with NT$ 3.97 Billion Revenue in October

Aspocomp Spins off China, India Units into JV with Hong Kong's Meadville

80 percent of the shares of the holding company will be sold to Meadville Holdings Limited, a Hong Kong listed parent company of the Meadville Group. Aspocomp will remain a minority owner with 20 percent ownership.
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