Rubber and membrane keypads can be backlit

G English Review_tmbCustom plastic injection and compression moulded components together with bespoke metal products have been supplied by G English Electronics for over 40 years. At Southern 2018 it showcased examples of its wide product range, together with variety of in-house services including rapid prototyping, tooling and contract manufacturing.

As a supplier of custom silicone rubber and membrane keypads, it offers backlit solutions with carbon ink, carbon pill or mechanical tactile applications.

Custom designed plastic housings have competitive tooling charges and unit costs and a quick turnaround of four to eight weeks from concept to production.

The company is also supplies bespoke manufactured zinc and aluminium alloy die casting, sheet metal stamping and forming, welding, CNC machining, aluminium extrusion and powdered metallurgy (sintering).

The company is also the UK distributor, and largest partner in Europe, for Sunon thermal management products. The manufacturer of electronics cooling fans has a comprehensive range of AC, DC and the recently introduced EC fans and motors.

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Displays are in all shapes and sizes

MIDAS REVIEWNew TFT products exhibited at Southern Manufacturing 2018 by the Midas Group included micro TFTs, high resolution IPS TFTs, portrait orientation letterbox units, and all round view angle (ARVA) types. Standard RGB and mono devices were demonstrated, alongside the display enhancement products such as cover glass, multi-touch capacitive and resistive multi-touch screens (RMTS)

Round and micro OLEDS complement the company’s traditional mono and RGB OLEDs, VA technology LCDs, high resolution graphic LCDs, alphanumeric LCDs, and ultrasonic sensor ranges.

Comprehensive technical assistance services the product development, working closely with the customer to find the best solutions for a specific application. This is supported by a range of interface, interconnection, and driver board products, designed to work with a range of industry standard processors and controllers such as Raspberry-Pi, UC32, and Arduino.

Technical business development managers offer on-site demonstrations for all display products, to reduce a customer’s project concept stage. The UK-based engineering team can support the chosen product evaluation time by supplying technical support including the initialisation code. The company says it aims to minimise a customer’s time and effort in realising a new product and presenting it to an end market.

Midas also offers over 700 lines stocked through distributors Farnell, RS Components, Rapid, and Maplin, making availability for prototyping and low volume production exceptionally easy

Independent distributor showcases international range

JPR Electronics ReviewElectronic component and accessories distributor, JPR Electronics, showcased components and enclosures from among the 70 plus brands it stocks at Southern Electronics 2018. All are supported by an experienced sales team and securely shipped from the EN ISO 9001:2008 approved warehouse.

Major suppliers on display included Schützinger, manufacturers of the Kelvin four-wire measurement connectors which remove any effects on measurements due to transition resistance and any thermovoltages found in standard measuring leads.

Enclosures from Hammond and CamdenBoss showed examples of industry standard BIM boxes, ergonomic handheld, multi-purpose and instrumentation cases, instrumentation desktop, and 19-inch enclosures, Raspberry Pi, Banana Pi and Arduino product cases, DIN rail fittings, potting and diecast metal boxes, heavy duty and electrical enclosures, custom designed enclosures and IP65 waterproof options.

Over 1,000 different models from Salecom include toggle switches, rocker switches, push buttons and slide switches. Versions are available from ultra-miniature and sub-miniature to miniature, and available for through hole and SMT assembly and supplied sealed, washable and dustproof, depending on product.

A range of relays from Hongfa and Finder include standard and low profile, PCB socket mounted relays and DIN rail versions with SPCO and DPCO contacts available with current ratings from 1.25 to 16A. Operating voltages are five, 12 or 24V DC and 110 and 230V AC.

Opto-electronic components from Kingbright and Winstar displays offer designers low profile, wide viewing angle surface mount LEDs in red, green, yellow and blue colours with a super-bright red option. Reliable LCD module displays including OLED display modules, monochrome TN/STN/FSTN character modules LCD and graphic LCD modules, COG LCD, FSC-LCD, VATN LCM modules and TFT LCM displays were also exhibited.

PCB services adapt to customer needs

1Fabrication services on rigid, flex and rigid-flex PCBs are provided by Hoiho PCB. The company provides a mix of volume and the availability of quick turn services, to cater for most PCB needs.

Quality and customers’ needs have led to investment in technology, automation and equipment for a stable supply of quality PCBs from technology innovative manufacturing zones in Guangdong Province, China.

Cable assembly services include automatic test

Pambry ReviewAutomatic cable tester and cable assembly manufacturing services from Pambry Electronics include manufacture of cable assemblies catering for commercial and military customers, working to either supplied specifications or client drawings. Production staff are qualified to IPC-A-620 wiring harness standard and have experience in cable constructions and connector types.

The latest cable stripping and crimping machines implement consistent and reliable terminations. If required the company can offer full procurement of components. All cables are tested using a customised digital cable tester which was demonstrated at the show. If over moulding is required there is a comprehensive suite of stock tools for commonly used connectors, and the company can adapt to differing cable sizes and connector types. For new designs, SolidWorks 3D software is used and the company liaises with suppliers if prototypes are required. Company logos can be added if appropriate.

Also demonstrated was a Personal Noise Dose Meter,  worn by employees to check they are working within government daily noise limits.

Store and charge devices via the cloud

smartboxx-review_tmbManufacturer and distributor of store and charge solutions for mobile devices, Nuwco, showed TechGuard Connect featuring Bretford Connect, a cloud-based web portal on the Smartboxx stand. It allows for real-time locker management from anywhere, says the company.
The system raises the bar for management and tracking of assets, says the company, with a cloud-based service that enables remote locker management capabilities from anywhere.

TechGuard Connect paired with the cloud-based management software supports remote locker management from anywhere in the world. IT administrators are able to access real-time locker statistics, remotely unlock bays, and provide a full audit trail through data logging.
Software and firmware updates can be done remotely.

There are RFID card or keypad options to manage devices. To help create an audit trail, RFID access allows facility managers to monitor locker usage. The ability to check devices out and back in again is coming soon for enhanced accountability, says the company.

The lockers have 10 bays, RFID or keypad user access, wired or wireless data, and AC or USB power options to charge devices such as phones, tablets and laptops. There is also a selection of colour and branding options.

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PCB services adapt to customer needs

1Fabrication services on rigid, flex and rigid-flex PCBs are provided by Hoiho PCB. The company provides a mix of volume and the availability of quick turn services, to cater for most PCB needs.

Quality and customers’ needs have led to investment in technology, automation and equipment for a stable supply of quality PCBs from technology innovative manufacturing zones in Guangdong Province, China.

Find out more at

EMC materials offer protection

Kemtron Preview edit_tmbBelieved to be the UK’s largest manufacturer of EMC materials, Kemtron offers a complete range of EMC gaskets, EMC ventilation panels, shielded windows and conductive adhesives.

The first level of EMC shielding is PCB design, however despite best efforts, the enclosure will usually need some form of shielding in the enclosure seams and openings, such as doors, windows and ventilation. It is imperative that EMC for enclosure design is considered at an early stage. Consideration should also be given to the environment the equipment will live in, as dust and water sealing can be incorporated into the EMC gasket. Types of gasket suitable for enclosure applications are conductive fabric over foam, knitted mesh or combination gaskets for really harsh environments. Beryllium copper fingers are suitable where high performance is required.

For smaller enclosures or machined parts, the most cost-effective method of providing an EMC/environmental seal is to use a conductive O ring in a groove, conductive elastomers are silicones or fluorosilicone filled with highly conductive particles. Where there is insufficient land to put a groove, the gasket can be directly applied to the surface with conductive form in place, this is a conductive elastomer paste applied through a syringe by an XYZ robot.

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Board test strategy benefits quality

Flying Test preview edit_tmbCombining the accuracy and test capabilities of Spea flying test ICT machines with integrated boundary scan, device programming and full functional testing, Flying Test Systems believes it achieves a level of test coverage, end-to-end cycle times and overall test efficiency that is realising significant improvements in both cost of test and final product quality for clients. It adds the benefits, whether they have in-house test equipment or use the company’s test, repair and return services.

Breaking away from the traditional circuit board test’s multi-stage process, with ICT machines, then board level functional, device programming and boundary scan as discrete processes with associated handling, data reporting and coverage / redundancy issues, the company adopts a layered test concept. Each system component, whether hardware or software contributes its strengths to the whole test cycle rather than solely to the individual process being considered. As an example, performing a board or system-level functional test inside a flying probe system can allow the use of strategically placed signals, even where no traditional test access is provided, to simulate external stimuli or to speed up a test which would take significantly longer in the functional test realm (injecting signals into time delay circuits and watchdogs, for example).

Using multiple test stages, with intelligent and adaptive sequencing inside one test platform enables a true one-stop-test solution, says the company.

Find out more on the Flying Test Systems website

Consultancy and audit preparation join IPC training offering

ART review_tmbEstablished in 1988, Advanced Rework Technology, claims to be the longest running electronics training and consultancy company in the UK.

It runs training courses to IPC standards and is an IPC authorised training centre, and offers training at both certified IPC trainer (CIT) level and at certified IPC application specialist (CIS) levels.

Two of the most widely used standards have been updated to keep pace with the ever-changing electronics industry. Training materials were released for IPC-A-610 and J-STD 001 Revision G, allowing companies to transition swiftly to the revision for all training requirements.

The company is also one of the only UK/regional IPC training centres who can offer all of the IPC training programmes, including certified interconnect designer (CID) and both the IPC-A-620 and J-STD space application training course.

Company expansion means it can offer consultancy and audit preparation. It presents courses at the training centre based in Essex and on customer’s premises.

As well as IPC training, it can offer specialised, bespoke, training in all aspects of PCB soldering and repair and rework.

Managing director, Debbie Wade, is the chair of the IPC-A-620 training committee, European Training and European Standards steering committees, helping write standards as well as the training programmes.

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