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24 SMT007 MAGAZINE I SEPTEMBER 2023 e PCB has become a neglected compo- nent from the Smart assembly manufacturing perspective, wrongly regarded as just a "given" material. We need to put it right. PCB manu- facturing needs to become Smart in order to make the local fabrication business model work as part of the holistic electronics' "smarter, secure, and sustainable" approach—what I'm calling the new three Ss of manufacturing. Advanced chip packaging and printed cir- cuit boards share a common attribute in that they are not simple materials, but rather sub- assemblies in their own right. Packaged semi- conductors are essentially 3D assemblies com- The Smart Business Case for Local PCB Manufacturing prised of several different chip components, as well as others, in a kind of "PCB-less" assem- bly. PCBs are similarly fabricated using a range of different processes and materials. Whereas semiconductor packages may inherit Smart processes, either from regular semiconductor or discrete assembly manufacturing, PCB fab- rication has seen relatively little evolution. Technologies involved in PCB performance continue to evolve gradually: e subject of several key IPC standards updates as quality and long-term reliability is sought with higher frequencies and power profiles in harsher envi- ronments and conditions. ough much of the Smart Factory Insights Feature Column by Michael Ford, AEGIS SOFTWARE

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