Thursday, April 19, 2018
Publication Date: 12/1/2010
Archive >  December 2010 Issue >  Electronic Mfg. Services > 

Micro Control Company EMS: Success in Minnesota
The latest automated equipment is on line.

Micro Control Company Electronic Manufacturing Services (EMS) works with customers by creating a cost-effective customized program to meet their requirements. From small beginnings to big ideas, Micro Control Company EMS has worked with new start-ups and large corporations and strives to be a one-stop shop for all customers.

The EMS provider is a privately held business that was founded in 1972 by CEO Harold Hamilton for the purpose of manufacturing test equipment for the electronics industry.

Turning its focus to the burn-in with test part of the industry, Micro Control established itself as a leading supplier of burn-in equipment to some of the largest semiconductor manufacturers in the world. Based on the need for quality electronic assembly that could meet strict deadlines and challenging designs, the company created and equipped a contract manufacturing department that it opened to the public in 1994.

Today, it is a vertically integrated organization; along with Micro Control Company EMS, it has a complete machine shop (fabricating and machining) and painting capabilities.

The company's EMS operation has 25,000 square feet of floor space dedicated to contract manufacturing of printed circuit board assemblies, end-item assemblies and Box-Builds. Included within this space are three standalone multifunction placement robotic machines; two high-speed, automated robotic lines; solder paste printers with vision; high-speed multifunction placement reflow; and in-line automated optical inspection systems.

Buffet-Style Services
Some customers just want populated printed circuit boards and the company is happy to comply — providing turnkey, consignment and combinations thereof. Other customers need more, such as, quick-turn prototypes, cable and harness integration, extensive functional testing, conformal coating for environmental protection, end-item assembly (box-build), and even drop shipping to the end user. Micro Control Company EMS works with the customer to create a program that is cost-effective, utilizing only the goods and services needed, while meeting all the requirements.
Hand-soldering and manual inspection are provided wherever needed.

When it comes to electronic design, Micro Control Company EMS has partnered with a premier local design firm that will work directly with the customer. The designers know the parameters for utilizing Micro Control equipment to its fullest potential and supply a cost-effective solution to the customers who need a design service, without being a cost overhead for the customers who do not. This also applies to mechanical design services.

Driven to Customer Satisfaction
Micro Control Company EMS is customer- and technology-driven, meaning that if there is a technology that the customer needs or that saves them money while increasing quality, the company will consider adding to its services. For example, wave solder machines were removed three years ago, replaced with selective solder equipment that is more environmentally friendly. Selective solder is used for thru-hole components such as connectors and wires, and solders only the pins protruding from the boards. Selective solder lowers costs, improves the product, has less impact on the environment, and it is the preferred pin soldering method that allows for surface mount technology (SMT) and thru-hole components to be placed on both sides of the boards.

To save customers money on stencils, the company has started using a universal framing system; purchasing unframed stencils reduces costs in this area.

Manufacturing Software
The company utilizes the latest in manufacturing software designed for use in an electronic manufacturing environment. When the customer provides a data package, the customer's bill of materials and computer-aided design files are imported into the manufacturing system, creating complete assembly and product routing information. Every change made to a product or process is completely documented and tracked, providing precise configuration control, and virtually eliminating costly build errors. Micro Control Company's investment in the latest manufacturing data management tools provides the best foundation on which to build future growth.

Component Sourcing
Worldwide sourcing agreements ensure the lowest cost component and subassembly purchases, maintaining the cost-effective solutions that the company is known for providing. It utilizes the services of the parent company's purchasing department for lowering costs and increasing its clout, gaining much higher discounts on component purchases. These savings translate into lower component costs for customers, thus reducing the overall cost of the assemblies. In virtually all situations, Micro Control Company EMS has the purchasing power behind it to source all of the customer-specified components often at lower prices than customers are able to find on their own.

Quality is key and the company achieved ISO 9001/2008 in 2004. Customer satisfaction is monitored through semi-annual customer surveys, weekly quality reviews, monthly ISO reviews and semi-annual reviews by management. The company strives to build all assemblies to IPC A 610 Class III, to guarantee customer satisfaction through the highest quality production possible. The customer's bill of materials and approved vendor list is also strictly adhered to, ordering exactly the components the customer has specified and not substituting a different part without approval.

The company provides a workmanship warranty, which is one year for a fully functional tested product. With the company testing the assemblies, it supports the customer for one year, reducing concerns over rejected products.

Micro Control Company EMS is active in many arenas, serving the needs of customers in areas that include medical, industrial, computer, consumer, telecommunications, radio frequency (RF), global positioning systems (GPS) and health/fitness. A special area of expertise is in the ever-expanding field of LEDs. High-power LEDs build up higher heat levels, which has led customers to use metalized printed circuit boards for heat dissipation. Micro Control Company EMS has the knowledge and equipment necessary to efficiently and quickly place LEDs, as well as all other components selected by customers.

Contact: Micro Control Company, 7956 Main Street NE, Minneapolis, MN 55432 800-328-9923 or 763-786-8750 E-mail: Web:


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