I-Connect007 Editor’s Choice: Five Must-Reads for the Week

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This week, we bring you a wide swath of news, columns, and articles from the past week. Altium announced a new cloud platform that connects design stakeholders with users of its Altium 365 environment. Cadence Design Systems has acquired a company that develops computational fluid dynamics technology to help expand its system analysis offerings.

Columnist Michael Ford clarifies what the term “smart” means, and what it doesn’t. And Hu Yang of Zhongtai Securities has written a great feature that delves into the worldwide price increase of copper-clad laminates, which he predicts could rise to 20% in early 2021. Finally, we bring you the 2020 “Just Ask” Compilation, which features all your questions for some of our experts: Happy Holden, John Mitchell, Joe Fjelstad, Tara Dunn, and Heidi Barnes, as well as their answers. Don’t forget to bookmark this handy compilation!

I-Connect007 'Just Ask' Q&A Compilation Available Now
Published April 21

Last year, we asked readers to send in questions for a who’s who of industry experts: Happy Holden, John Mitchell, Joe Fjelstad, Tara Dunn, and Heidi Barnes. Now, we have compiled all of your questions and the experts’ answers into one handy compendium for your easy access. And don’t forget to pose your questions for our next “Just Ask” series expert, “Trouble in Your Tank” columnist Mike Carano.

Altium’s New Cloud Platform Connects Electronics Industry Ecosystem
Published April 20

Altium continues to expand the technology around Altium 365. The new cloud-based platform Nexar allows design stakeholders to provide their software and services to existing users of Altium 365. After joining the Nexar community, fabricators, EMS companies, and component distributors and manufacturers can offer up-to-date information to PCB designers and engineers during the design cycle. 

Cadence Acquires Pointwise to Expand System Analysis Offerings
Published April 16

Cadence moves further into system analysis with its acquisition of the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) development company Pointwise. The Pointwise mesh-generation technology reads in data from the leading CAD formats and will build upon Cadence’s Clarity and Celsius product line.

Time, Space, Structure, and Model Analysis of CCL Price Increase
Published April 19

Hu Yang of Zhongtai Securities Research Center authored this investigative article for our partners at PCB China Magazine. As Hu explains, prices of materials are expected to increase, possibly up to 20%, in 2021. He also describes the considerable bargaining power that our industry has regarding material cost.

Smart Is Not A Binary Concept
Published April 21

For all the talk about “smart” technology and processes, there’s still a lot of confusion about exactly what the term entails. Michael Ford comes to the rescue with this column that describes what “smart” is and what it is not. He provides a smart process IQ test to measure the intelligence of smart technologies, starting with the smartphone and continuing up through industry processes such as IPC-CFX.




Suggested Items

Technology and Development Prospects for the European Marketplace

01/18/2022 | Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
Nolan Johnson speaks with Tarja Rapala-Virtanen technical director of the EIPC who breaks down the current state of the European market and which technologies and market segments are seeing growth.

A Tour of the New Isola Factory: Investing in North America

12/23/2021 | Barry Matties, I-Connect007
Barry Matties recently toured Isola’s new 118,000-square-foot low-volume, high-mix manufacturing facility in Chandler, Arizona. The facility’s construction began in 2020 and, like many building projects, was delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Building a new factory during the pandemic was certainly a challenge but the team persevered and the new greenfield facility is now operating to meet the needs of the North American market. During the tour, Barry met with Travis Kelly, Ed Kelley, Sean Mirshafiei, Jenny Inocencio, and Walt Niziolek. They covered a range of topics, including lab operations, hiring, the supply chain, R&D, and the concept of the new facility. The factory was designed to extensively utilize automation to improve efficiencies and, as Travis Kelly stated, “to de-risk the labor shortage issue.”

Agfa Taking Leap to Digital Platform

12/13/2021 | Pete Starkey, I-Connect007
I-Connect007 Technical Editor Pete Starkey spoke with Agfa Business Unit Manager Frank Louwet ahead of last month’s productronica show in Europe. They discuss the company’s desire to reduce its carbon footprint and the benefits of this change, particularly with a move to digital inkjet printing, and describes some of the company’s newest products. As Louwet explains, "Our claim is 'Grow your business, not your footprint.' By going digital you can grow your business without having to increase your waste materials, your processing chemicals, your water, and even your floor space."

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