This Could be the Start of Something Big

IPC Vice President of Industry Programs Tony Hilvers takes on the Between the Lines column this month due to the departure of IPC President Denny McGuirk.

Early this year, Mary Mac Kinnon, IPC’s director of trade show sales, received a call from Don Banfield, president of Conductive Compounds, Inc., wanting to know what IPC could do for the printed electronics industry. She passed the call on to me.

Don and several of his colleagues are associated with the printing industry and his group wanted to expand their businesses from the printing/graphic arts industry into electronics.

To make a long story short, IPC now has a new committee: the IPC Printed Electronics Management Council Steering Committee. This management council represents members of the entire printed electronics supply chain from raw materials (inks and coated/laminated films) to PCB manufacturers to the manufacturer of functional printed products.

What programs do they want? Well, for one thing, they want printed electronics standards. IPC’s technical department has recently begun developing printed electronics standards for design, base material, additive material and assembly. The IPC printed electronics standards groups met in Santa Clara at the end of November and will meet again at IPC APEX EXPO® in San Diego February, 2012.

The IPC Printed Electronics Management Council Steering Committee, chaired by Banfield, and Vice Chair Steve Tomas, Flexcon, is supporting a technical track on printed electronics and will hold a management council meeting in San Diego. Several steering committee members will also have booths at a special printed electronics area on the show floor.

Ultimately they want what other management councils and technical committees in IPC have always wanted: They want a voice; they want to be heard; they want to be taken seriously and they want to be an industry!

Isn’t that the remarkable power of IPC? Whether it’s printed circuit board manufacturers wanting to develop standards in 1957 or contract manufacturers wanting to improve their branding as the electronics manufacturing services industry in the late ’80s, these groups turned to IPC. And IPC was a home to them.

So regardless of where you are in the electronics supply chain, come home to IPC.

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