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8 SMT007 MAGAZINE I MARCH 2021 Nolan's Notes by Nolan Johnson, I-CONNECT007 Who's Feeling the Pinch in a Smart Process? In my February column, I shared the story of stumbling upon the 2015 BBC production titled "Building Cars: Secrets to the Assem- bly Line," hosted by James May. It seems that using automotive assembly as an example from which to learn is apropos these days. As reported in e Financial Times on Feb- ruary 3, 2021, "General Motors has ordered a shutdown at three plants and slowed pro- duction at a fourth as it grapples with a global shortage of semiconductors," continuing to point out that "2021 production targets were under threat as a result." Back in December, Tesla was reported to be planning temporary shutdowns due to semiconductor shortages. Volkswagen, as well, is widely reported to be feeling the squeeze on the assembly line. e same is reported to be true at Continental. Surprisingly (well, surprising to me), auto- motive manufacturers are reportedly quite far down the priority list when supply is short. DW 's reporting (the English-language news feeds from German broadcaster Deutsche Welle) states, "e auto industry is known to be down in the pecking order as far as chip- makers are concerned. ey favor consumer electronics companies, such as Apple, as their orders are larger, and they pay better."

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