Critical Skills for Today's Components Engineer

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Ross Bernheim
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Stock Keeper
Changing Requirements
Ross Bernheim   11/6/2013 2:54:15 PM

More and more countries are adding versions of RoHS or other chemical restrictions. Most disturbing is the EU REACH legislation with new chemicals added every six months. This is a moving target for compliance. Design now and you can be bitten every six months until they get through adding new substances to their list several years from now!

Even if you are not directly subject to these regulations, your customers may very well be and require you to meet them before they will buy from you.

It truely is a global regulatory environment.

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Supply Network Guru
t.alex   11/16/2012 10:04:55 AM

LED is pretty good example. The same goes for tiny components like capacitors, transistors, etc. these can be easily over-spec or under- spec.

Douglas Alexander
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Douglas Alexander   11/15/2012 11:29:49 AM

@t.alex, you are correct. The component qualification requires a technical mind with specific skills. All to often, a vendor will sell a purchasing person a very close to match part, but if purchased, the part could have the wrong lead-spacing, materials content, voltage, current, timing, power, or some other critical threshhold because the supplier was only referencing values like capacitance, inductance, frequency, or some other basic parametric. Trying to match LEDS is a neat trick. Often times the same form, fit, and function alternate manufacturer's LED will have a slightly different color cast that really looks bad and stands out when placed in an area with the original parts.

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Supply Network Guru
t.alex   11/13/2012 12:30:09 AM

I realise a number of companies do not hire properly a component engineer. Most of the time the purchasing manager will shoulder extra responsibility in component selection together with the R&D guys, but usually it ends up not having enough details.

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Supply Network Guru
prabhakar_deosthali   11/8/2012 11:29:57 PM

I cannot agree more to importance of this issue.

As the selection of the right components in the design stage has become so critical in today's world, it is also important to have a clear idea on the product introduction date and the product life time , to be able to have the clear knowledge on the the new legislation that will be applicable to the product being developed when it is introduced in the market.

In this context the component engineer's job becomes more important than that of a design engineer and as Douglas says , the product companies need to have a very clear focus on this function.


My concern here is , are the component designers equipped to design their components to meet the new and upcoming environmental legislations and give enough specs to the product designers in advance ?

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