Exhibitor Spotlight: RoodMicrotec GmbH
In the first of our exhibitor spotlight series we spoke to Reinhard Pusch, COO & Director at RoodMicrotec GmbH about the growth in the semiconductor industry, new aerospace trends and what they will be showcasing at Space Tech Expo Europe.
Reinhard joined RoodMicrotec in 2004 as CSO and Managing Director. He was appointed COO and Managing Director in June 2016. He is responsible for the overall management of the company together with CEO Martin Sallenhag, and specifically managing the sales organisation, supply chain management and funded projects. He has 27 years’ experience in qualification and test of electronic and optoelectronic components for the telecommunication market. During his time at Alcatel he had experience in various management positions.
Which customer or market demands were the biggest drivers of your company’s growth during the past three years?
Rapid technological innovation especially in the automotive and industry sector is currently driving growth in the semiconductor industry. The advancement of digitisation and the Internet of Things (IoT) further increased demand for semiconductor products and services. Therefore, our customers increasingly ask for more supply chain management and application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) turnkey solutions and high reliability (hi-rel) products for the space and aerospace sector. At RoodMicrotec, the largest independent full-service test house in Europe, we are expert in these services. We collaborate closely with design houses, package suppliers, foundries, institutes and other related parties to offer the optimal solution for our customers.
Do you anticipate that those demands will continue to be your biggest growth drivers for the next three years, or are you anticipating new trends?
We anticipate that those demands will continue but we also expect them to expand more and more to other sectors such as the aerospace sector. Because of the very high quality and reliability demands in this market, failure and technology analysis already plays a decisive role. As we are very experienced in this field, we know what companies in the aerospace sector need. Therefore, we provide comprehensive services in this area such as non-destructive testing with x-ray or ultrasonic and visual inspection of image sensors.
What are your areas of R&D focus? Can you tell us anything about those products/services?
Within our services we continuously improve our methodologies on extreme testing solutions such as wafer testing at temperatures down to -55°C in production. In addition, together with our aerospace customers we develop new non-destructive test methods and production tests for opto-electronic devices. Our customers already benefit from these R&D efforts.
What new trends do you anticipate and what market demands do you see evolving/changing over the next five years?
A new demand currently evolving is using consumer- and industrial-grade components for aerospace applications. So-called components-off-the-shelf (COTS) are a cost-reducing option as the developing costs are covered by the whole industry and not only by one company. RoodMicrotec consults on how to adapt components for the aerospace sector, which were originally released for – as an example – the automotive sector, and provide complete solutions for our customers. We perform, for example, qualifications according to standards like AEC-Q 100/101/200. These are criteria of the Automotive Electronics Council (AEC) to standardise qualification of electronic components in the automotive sector.
What would you say are the key challenges and opportunities currently faced by the industry?
One of the key challenges faced by our industry is changing market conditions. Customers – especially in the aerospace sector – demand more and more COTS instead of cost-intensive hi-rel-specific components. We have to face this task, but even here we see opportunities for us because of our long experience and specific know-how in the automotive sector, which we can adapt to projects of aerospace customers. Furthermore, the space and aerospace sector needs more and more opto-electronic components such as light-emitting diodes (LEDs), laser diodes and image sensors. We qualify those components and therefore see these developments as a chance for us as we support our customers in the introduction of new devices.
What is your company’s approach to strategic partnerships or joint ventures, and what kinds of partnerships are you most open to exploring?
RoodMicrotec depends on highly reliable partners as we are responsible for the whole projects of our customers as well as for the different disciplines within the projects. Therefore, strong partnerships with reliable suppliers such as assembly houses and wafer foundries or with institutes are essential to be able to be at the forefront of technology and to have access to additional resources and ideas in the realisation of sophisticated turnkey projects. Currently we are looking for partners who specialise in high-frequency applications such as gallium nitride (GaN) devices.
What products will you be featuring at the show this year and what response are you expecting?
We will present our services in the field of ASIC turnkey solutions including: supply chain management services; test and product engineering; product qualification and environmental tests; failure and technology analysis and consulting. In addition, we will be featuring three new services at the show: first, visual inspection for image sensors; second, non-destructive test methods with x-ray or computer tomography; third, we will highlight the transfer from specific hi-rel qualifications towards automotive-based qualification methods. We expect that the market will be surprised by our wide portfolio and the experience and know-how of our experts.
Why are you exhibiting and what connections do you hope to make there?
We take all opportunities to meet our customers personally, and on this occasion the decision makers in the aerospace sector. We would like to demonstrate to them our experience and services in the field of ASIC turnkey projects – especially our new approach to the COTS discussion. Furthermore, we expect to connect with interesting partners.
Visit RoodMicrotec GmbH at Space Tech Expo Europe 2017 in stand H73