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44 PCB007 MAGAZINE I OCTOBER 2020 Interview by Pete Starkey I-CONNECT007 Taiyo America's Don Monn explains new product developments based on understand- ing challenges that OEMs are looking for sup- pliers to overcome on their behalf and discuss- es the attributes of a crack-resistant white sol- der mask for automotive LED applications. Pete Starkey: I'm delighted to have the opportunity to catch up with Don Monn, sales manager with Taiyo Amer- ica. It's wonderful to get the chance to talk to you again. It has been ages since I saw you last. I remember it was at the EIPC c o n f e re n c e i n Rotterdam. Don Monn: It has been a while, but this gives us a great opportunity to talk about some things that are go- ing on. I am looking forward to the chance to get to another conference so we can all sit down and have a Pepsi. Starkey: I look forward to it, too. What have your development people been working on in the meantime? What's new at Taiyo America? Monn: Thanks for asking. Over the last sever- al months, we have had weekly, monthly, and quarterly meetings to talk about what's need- ed in the industry. Typically, when you have a big R&D group, you need to look at the things that aren't currently available. In other words, we would go to customers and OEMs and ask, "What do you need that you don't currently have? What's moving forward?" In a nutshell, we're working on some thermal man- agement materials for the sur- face of circuit boards, as well as the holes. We're working on low Dk and low Df solder masks to help with the speed of high- speed circuitry. We're working on a new high- temperature sol- der mask for the automotive industry t h a t w i l l re a c h h e a t numbers that we haven't seen to date because, as you know, in the automotive industry, they're starting to put packages in solution. And when I say a solution, I mean transmission fluid and oil, which is very hot for very long periods of time. Then, there's always the inkjet solder mask that we've been talking about for years; that's a growing industry right now, as we all knew it would be. And last but not least, we An Update From Taiyo America's Don Monn

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