Seeing Big Possibilities

A comment in old friend Dominique Numakura’s weekly newsletter prompted this audacious thought.

First, though, the background. Dominique has been detailing this year’s JPCA 2010 Show. As he points out in his June 13 issue, there was a new exhibition focused on large-scale electronics. In it, it was revealed how market demand for massive flat panel TVs, digital signage, photovoltaic cells and surface light sources creates concurrent demand for large PCBs. And he notes how, while suppliers like the trend — more volume sold — PCB makers aren’t necessarily embracing it because of the bigger boards require tooling changes and capital equipment investments.

But (!) — and this is where Dominique leaves off and audacious Mike comes in — big boards are what North America traditionally has done well. Could it be that this trend, primarily for industrial and certain consumer electronics — might actually spark a modest return to prominence for domestic fabricators?

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About Mike

Mike Buetow is president of the Printed Circuit Engineering Association ( He previously was editor-in-chief of Circuits Assembly magazine, the leading publication for electronics manufacturing, and PCD&F, the leading publication for printed circuit design and fabrication. He spent 21 years as vice president and editorial director of UP Media Group, for which he oversaw all editorial and production aspects. He has more than 30 years' experience in the electronics industry, including six years at IPC, an electronics trade association, at which he was a technical projects manager and communications director. He has also held editorial positions at SMT Magazine, community newspapers and in book publishing. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois. Follow Mike on Twitter: @mikebuetow

One thought on “Seeing Big Possibilities

  1. Honestly, no. America used to build small products too. But as demand rose, so did outsourcing. As demand for these products rise, guess where it’s going.

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