SMT Magazine

SMT-Nov2017

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52 SMT Magazine • November 2017 Component Cost Disparity Study Update First, a quick update on the conclusion to our material pricing disparity study. 1,2,3,4 Unfor- tunately, we have received "crickets" from the agencies that were contacted. In my opinion, this industry issue is too important to drop. So, we'll keep digging for data. If any of you in our reading audience can contribute data or firsthand experiences concerning the price of assembly material in high labor rate regions, versus material pricing when the assembly is done remotely in low labor rate areas, please let me know. Of course, as suggested in a past column 5 this issue becomes moot if the com- ponents begin to be manufactured in the same geographic location where they are assembled into products. The many current reshoring efforts being un- dertaken in high labor rate regions make the is- sue crucial. This is especially true if the assem- bly activity is being done by a company which is of small or medium size, either an EMS (elec- tronic manufacturing services) or an OPD (orig- inal product developer)—specifically, one that does not have multiple global assembly opera- tions served by a central procurement capability. On Solder Joint Voids—The Dilemma In parallel to the continuing attempt to gather data that address the disparity in com- ponent cost between high- and low-labor rate assembly regions, in this column, we leap off the bandwagon into another thorny issue: sol- der joint voiding. On the surface, it doesn't seem to be an is- sue: "No voiding permitted." That's easy. How- ever, not so fast says Inspector John J. Fadoozle, America's #1 private eye. The number of vari- ables involved in void creation is daunting and not as well understood as you might think, not- withstanding the hundreds of technical papers written on the subject. And, there will be voids. JUMPING OFF THE BANDWAGON 52 SMT Magazine • October 2017

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