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46 PCB007 MAGAZINE I JANUARY 2020 market. Calumet transitioned its focus from the head down to growing technological capa- bilities side by side with OEMs and other customers. Our tech- nology has significantly evolved over the past six years, position- ing Calumet to compete at the highest levels for all customers, but especially the aerospace and defense market. Calumet is al- so developing technologies that could reset the technology curve and bring semi-additive processing in volume to the United States. Dunn: It is great to see a domestic PCB man- ufacturer investing in leading-edge, forward- looking technology. I understand that two technologies you currently have in develop- ment are flexible circuits and the Averatek A-SAP™ process. Can you explain a little more about your corporate philosophy, and what is driving this focus on investment in the future? LaBeau: Calumet's corporate philosophy is to meet the needs of the domestic market through the advancement of a full-scale ho- listic solution for PCB design and fabrication, from rigid to flex and 15–25-micron space and trace. Calumet's engineering and manufactur- ing strives to provide world-class quality, tech- nology, and service to continue to position the North American market as reliable and robust. We are focused on employees, customers, and technologies as driven by our internal strategic plan and the voices of the market. The market demands a robust workforce to meet the cur- rent and future demands as driven by compo- nentry and size/weight restrictions. Brassard: Exactly. There is where America is and where America should be, with respect to the types of technology U.S. companies can design, engineer, manufacture, and de- ploy. I'm fine with a global supply chain, but it's very important that American companies manufacture cutting-edge technologies on U.S. soil. Calumet Electronics is flying the compa- ny toward the holes that need to be plugged in the U.S., in some cases, by providing ad- vanced technologies securely sourced within the U.S. with short lead-times, and in other cases, industrializing industry- changing technologies, such as Averatek's A-SAP™. We can't be everything to everyone, but we drive hard to provide solid solutions that are 100% engi- neered and manufactured in the United States. Dunn: This year's IPC APEX EXPO is going to have several different opportunities for attend- ees to learn more about semi-additive process- es for PCB manufacturing, and you are an in- tegral part of that education. Can you give us a sneak peek? What are some of the benefits of this process for end-users? Brassard: The potential applications for Aver- atek's A-SAP™ technology boggles the mind, or more realistically, solves real engineering and manufacturing problems in aerospace, defense, medical, and just about every industry where size matters, weight, reliability, or cost mat- ters. The A-SAP™ process resets manufactur- ing complexity on technologies that cannot be produced at volume currently within the U.S. Imagine your design going from nine parts up on a 18x21 panel to 70 parts up, while reducing layer count, eliminating lamination cycles, and increasing reliability due to stronger chemical bonds. These capabilities are on the horizon for the domestic electronics industry. LaBeau: Calumet is excited to be present- ing on the initial results from the industrial- ization of the A-SAP™ process. Over the past seven months, Calumet has developed equip- ment, processing guidelines, and prototype products, realizing space and trace down to 20 microns. We will be presenting these ear- ly results at IPC APEX EXPO. Although results are what folks want to see, the bigger ques- tion and engagement we hope to draw forth is Todd Brassard

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