Association News – August 2017
North American PCB Business Weakens but Book-to-Bill Ratio Remains Positive
IPC – Association Connecting Electronics Industries announced today the May 2017 findings from its monthly North American Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Statistical Program. PCB sales and orders were both down compared to last year. Weaker orders caused the PCB book-to-bill ratio to retreat but it remained positive at 1.05.
Total North American PCB shipments in May 2017 were down 3.1 percent compared to the same month last year. This year to date, shipments are 4.3 percent below the same period last year. Compared to the preceding month, May shipments decreased 26.7 percent.
PCB bookings in May decreased 7.3 percent year-on-year, pushing year-to-date order growth back into negative territory at 1.3 percent below the same period last year. Bookings in May were down 33.6 percent compared to the previous month.
“May was a slow month for the North American PCB industry as both sales and orders were below last year’s levels,” said Sharon Starr, IPC’s director of market research. “Although weak orders pulled the book-to-bill ratio down from April’s 20-month peak, the good news is that the ratio remains above parity (1.00) for the fourth consecutive month, which is a positive indicator for strengthening sales in the second half of the year,” she added.
SMTA International Conference Program Finalized and Registration Now Open
The SMTA is pleased to announce that the program for the SMTA International Conference and Exhibition is finalized and available on-line at www.smta.org/smtai and registration is open. Taking place September 17-21, 2017 at the Donald Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Illinois, the conference features 20 workshops, 140 technical papers, and numerous complimentary offerings for engineers and professionals in the electronics manufacturing industry.
Technical tracks will cover Advanced Packaging Technology; Manufacturing Excellence – process and assembly; Substrates/PCB Technology; Flux, Solder and Adhesives; and Inspection Technologies. Engineers from major manufacturing companies like Celestica, Flex, IBM, Intel, Lockheed Martin, Sanmina Corporation, and several universities will present their latest research on critical process improvements, new materials and technologies. One session on Monday afternoon comprised of all women presenters will be followed by a panel discussion on the technical achievements of women, mentoring, and STEM initiatives. Three focused symposia rounding out the technical conference are the Technical Innovations Symposium, Harsh Environments Symposium, and Lead-Free Soldering Technology Symposium.
Twenty half-day educational workshops are offered Sunday and Monday from expert instructors on topics including Fan-Out Wafer-Level Packaging and 3D Packaging, DfX, Cleaning, Ball Grid Array (BGA) issues, Flex Circuits, Reliability, Inspection, Temperature Profiling, Reflow Soldering, Stencil Printing, Surface Finishes, Process Troubleshooting and more.
Microsoft’s General Manager of their HoloLens Hardware Design Team, Rune Jensen, will keynote the conference with a presentation Tuesday morning titled “Experiencing Mixed Reality – using the Microsoft HoloLens.” The ability to project 3D images into a user’s field of view has many exciting applications in the industrial space with the ability to provide real-time information or images fixed in-space to a real-world object. Microsoft calls this “mixed reality.” Rune will share technical challenges and triumphs as well as illustrate several practical applications of this innovative technology.
The early registration deadline is August 25, 2017. For full details and to register for SMTA International, visit http://www.smta.org/smtai or contact SMTA Executive Director Tanya Martin: 952-920-7682 or firstname.lastname@example.org