One World, One Industry: The Future of Electronics in the Automotive Industry

Automotive electronics is not a new topic. While there is a trend for both performance and luxury electronics, many of the recent conversations tend to focus on self-driving/autonomous vehicles. While the technology is exciting, it is just the tip of the iceberg. Did you know that your car is most likely the most technologically advanced device you own? It seems weird to refer to a car as a device, but modern automobiles have more chips and circuit boards than your average home Internet appliance.

In fact, high-tech systems in cars has been around since the 1980s. And we aren’t just talking about for GPS, computerized screens, or entertainment. Electronically controlled ignition and fuel injection systems allow automotive designers to meet standard requirements for fuel economy, while lowering emissions. With these systems, cars can still maintain high levels of performance and convenience for drivers. Today’s automobiles are comprised of many processors.

Printed circuit boards play a vital role in the performance and reliability of everything from engine, fuel injection, ignition systems, and throttle control. And that’s just a start. Most of today’s cars have between 30 and 80 separate electronic controllers.

Furthering the importance of proper standards for manufacturing, Volvo recently announced that all their manufactured vehicle models will be electric or hybrid by 2019. This decision marks Volvo as the first traditional automaker to work toward phasing out cars powered by only internal combustion engines. This means more electronics, which means more effort needs to be placed on ensuring these vehicles can handle the rigorous thermal cycles present in a vehicles day to-day usage.

In conjunction with that, France has announced that as part of their plan to be carbon neutral by 2050, they are rolling out a plan to eliminate gas powered vehicles by 2040. IPC will continue to work hard to drive the proper manufacturing required to ensure electric vehicles are produced to correct standards.

In the coming weeks, we will have a certification program available for IPC-6012DA: Automotive Applications Addendum to IPC-6012D, Qualification and Performance Specification for Rigid Printed Boards, which provides documentation/drawings for rigid printed boards that must survive the vibration and thermal cycling environments of electronic interconnects within the automotive industry.

And, as of last year, IPC began the development of a press-fit standard for automotive requirements[1]. This standard, which was requested by the European automotive electronics industry, intends to cover the qualifications and acceptance requirements for press-fit pin technology that includes the reliability needs for automotive and other industries, such as aerospace.

For more information on IPC’s standards development initiatives including those for the automotive industry, visit our standards website[2].

References

1. IPC Announces Development of a Pressfit Pin Standard for Automotive Requirements

2. IPC.org/Standards

John Mitchell is president and CEO of IPC—Association Connecting Electronics Industries. To read past columns or to contact Mitchell, click here.

This column originally appeared in the September 2017 issue of The PCB Magazine, click here.

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2017

One World, One Industry: The Future of Electronics in the Automotive Industry

09-15-2017

Automotive electronics is not a new topic. While there is a trend for both performance and luxury electronics, many of the recent conversations tend to focus on self-driving/autonomous vehicles. While the technology is exciting, it is just the tip of the iceberg.

View Story

One World, One Industry: India Makes Manufacturing Gains to Participate in a Global Economy

08-18-2017

The manufacturing industry is truly a global one. While the past few decades have seen the rise of manufacturing in China and countries throughout Europe and South America, the last 10 years have been marked by significant progress in India. While the greater Asian area has flourished, India has been hampered by many factors including a struggling infrastructure.

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One World, One Industry: Three Ways to Close the Skills Gap in U.S. Manufacturing

07-12-2017

The skills gap is a chronic problem in the manufacturing sector. Most manufacturing companies have a hard time aligning the talent needed to run their businesses with the talent that is available to work locally. And as new innovations emerge, new skills requirements emerge as well.

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One World, One Industry: Having an Impact from the Shop Floor to the Halls of Government

07-07-2017

When you have concerns about government regulations and policies that impact your business, what can you do? Among several options, a direct approach is one of the best: Reach out to your elected officials and share your concerns. The odds are good that they will be responsive and look into ways of helping out a hometown business.

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China—A Critical Partner for Trade

06-09-2017

Count me among those business leaders who thought the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was on the right track last year and would have brought significant benefits to all nations, including the United States. Before President Trump withdrew the United States from the TPP trade negotiations, I had argued it would have unified the world’s most dynamic economic region—bringing together developed and developing countries that collectively represent 825 million consumers and 40% of the world’s economic output.

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One World, One Industry: 100 Days In—President Trump and a Better Manufacturing Policy

04-19-2017

To truly increase the number of American manufacturing jobs, President Trump should support increased investment in research and development for advanced manufacturing, promote and fund STEM education in primary and secondary schools, and build stronger apprenticeship programs. It is this type of investment—in human capital and technology—that will truly help make American manufacturing great again.

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One World, One Industry: IPC’s Global Policy Framework for 2017—Smart Advocacy for the Industry

04-10-2017

As President Trump was being sworn in several weeks ago, and as the new Congress was getting down to work, IPC released its Global Policy Framework for 2017. As we work to represent more than 3,800 member facilities across the electronics industry’s global supply chain, IPC will adhere to this framework to guide our policy work in the coming months. All of our advocacy efforts are aimed at fostering an environment in which electronics manufacturers and their suppliers can thrive and grow.

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One World, One Industry: Emerging Technology, Training for the Future, and the Next Industrial Revolution

02-13-2017

Technology isn’t just a tangible entity. It moves beyond what we can see, feel, and touch. It is ideas and theories. It includes philosophy and risks. In a way, technology itself is like the stock market. Different industries hedge their bets on emerging trends. These trends develop into useful products that change our world.

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One World, One Industry: Implications of the Trump Presidency

01-20-2017

Our biggest concern is the impact on international trade. Specifically, President-elect Trump has said he would drop U.S. participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), put a hold on the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP), seek to renegotiate NAFTA, slap higher tariffs on imports from China, and seek greater penalties on nations accused of dumping products or raw materials and committing intellectual property violations.

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2016

One World, One Industry: Strengthening Your Value Proposition to Boost Organization Success

12-16-2016

John Mitchell's new column's title says it all: One World, One Industry. In the coming columns, the IPC president will be covering issues affecting the entire global electronics industry supply chain with specific expertise on global standards, education, advocacy and solutions.

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One World, One Industry: Six Leadership Lessons from 20 Years in the Electronics Industry

11-07-2016

The orchestra conductor is an apt metaphor for the successful leader. Effective leadership often boils down to the ability to inspire others (the symphony) to their best work, while keeping and driving the overall vision of the organization (the musical score).

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One World, One Industry: Voting — A Civic Duty and Industry Opportunity

10-17-2016

On Tuesday, November 8, more than 240 million people in the United States will have the opportunity to go to the polls and vote, make their voices heard in government, and influence the direction of public policy for years to come. Much of the world is closely watching with interest in this major U.S. election.

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