Charles E. Bauer, Ph.D. & Herbert J. Neuhaus, Ph.D.
Portland, OR, USA
With all the excitement around IoT (Internet of Things), big data and cognitive computing the impact of wearable electronics on the manufacturing environment frequently gets lost in the noise. However, the capability and capacity to serve the needs driven by these trends falls on theshoulders of the electronics industry and in particular SMT assembly. This paper explores the seemingly conflicting requirements of achieving low cost while meeting the high volume, high mix product requirements of this brave new world of electronics systems.
Software tools applied to the world of integrated circuits, e.g. field programmable gate arrays, soft radios, etc. provide the flexibility demanded in the design of smart phones, embedded controllers, and specialty sensors. Drawing on these experiences SMT assemblers can serve the burgeoning world of wearable electronics and tailor individual products to specific applications and environments using rapid change approaches driven by quantitative and qualitative analysis of large data sets that define the market expectations. The authors delve into specific tools being developed in Japan, Germany and the USA that facilitate these approaches while outlining specific changes demanded of the supply chain in order to meet the high mix needs of customers at low cost.
Initially Published in the SMTA Proceedings