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74 SMT007 MAGAZINE I NOVEMBER 2019 The next two to three years on the horizon should bring some challenges and opportuni- ties for the electronics assembly industry. My perspective on the electronics supply chain is very broad in nature. Our firm is involved in PCB rework/repair, including the supply of niche PCB rework, repair, and assembly prod- ucts, as well as the training of soldering techni- cians, engineers, and wire/cable harness users and suppliers. In terms of markets, due to the very diverse nature of our business, we are involved in the military, aerospace, semiconductor, industrial, communications, EMS, IoT, computer, trade school, training center, education, research, and medical fields. The nature of our varied businesses and thousands of customers over 20+ years puts us in the mix from design through prototyping, manufacturing, and Electronics Assembly Industry Outlook product support. Geographically, our products go directly into the market around the world, our rework and repair services are a harbinger of the EMS build market, and our training ser- vices are hyperfocused in the Midwest of the United States. Therefore, we see much of the activity in the global electronics supply chain. There are numerous PCB rework/repair challenges being faced by North American customers. One trend has to do with increas- ing package sizes, which are being driven by the market desires. In the past five years alone, the state-of-the-art semiconductor package has gone from approximately 10 to 30 billion tran- sistors on a single package. These larger pack- age devices—such as LGAs, BGAs, and CCGAs with greater than 50 x 50 mm overall package size—challenge rework equipment and pro- cessing capabilities. Knocking Down the Bone Pile Feature Column by Bob Wettermann, BEST INC.

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