DOST’S electronics product development center to enable local electronics industry to develop world-class electronic products

MANILA, Feb. 14 (PNA) — The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has established an electronics product development center (EPDC) that will support the design of electronic products by the local electronics industry.

The country’s first electronics design facility will provide state of the art design, prototyping and testing facilities for printed circuit boards (PCB), which is the primary electronics component that mechanically supports and electrically connects electronic component.

“This facility will provide assistance to product designers to help improve the quality of their designs through the various test equipment and services that will help ensure that the design meets international product standards,” said Project Monitor Darwin Santos of the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD) in an interview with the Philippines News Agency.

It also aims to upgrade the local electronics research and development and make cost-effective and efficient the development and certification of locally-made but world class electronic device products.

The EPDC provides three facilities namely: electro-magnetic compatibility and safety test facility, PCB design and prototyping facility and product prototyping facility.

The EMC and safety test facility allows companies to have their products locally tested for product integrity and compliance as a strict requirement for international exports.

The PCB design and prototyping facility houses global industry standard computer aided design (CAD) tools and facilities for PCB design and prototyping.

These tools which will include signal integrity, mechanical and thermal simulation equipment are intended to provide companies access to fast turnaround time of schematic capture and PCB prototype development.

This will also enable companies to have in-depth analyses of complicated designs before going to the first prototypes of their products.

Its product prototyping laboratory will aid companies for thorough verification of functional and environmental limits of their products that includes signal integrity and eye diagram measurement, stress testing.

The laboratory will also house tools and equipment aimed to fast track prototyping and debugging of products and provide a space for a repository of electronic components commonly needed by companies in their development.

The center will enable the local electronics industry to develop higher value added products such as industrial electronic systems, mobile computing devices, healthcare electronics, and consumer appliances.

“We aim for the country to produce a pool of designers of world-class electronic products in the future,” said Santos.

The center is set for operation within the third quarter of the year.

Once it is fully in place, local companies need not send their designs abroad for fabrication and compliance testing, which are more expensive and will have the advantage of shorter turn-around time especially for companies who cannot afford to put up their own product development facilities.

The EPDC had its groundbreaking ceremony last December 3, 2013 which was attended by DOST Undersecretary Amelia Guevarra, Assistant Secretary and Metals Industry, Research and Development Center (MIRDC) Officer in Charge Robert Dizon, Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI) Director Dennis Villorente and Electronics Industry Association of the Philippines, Inc. (EIAPI) President Alexander Sy.

In his address during the event, ASTI Director Villorente lamented that the industry is currently focused on the assembly of electronic products. Thus, the EPDC supports the growth of the electronics industry through facilitating investments in higher value added services such as product design and development; prototyping and testing; marketing and support.

“As one and united government, we have to be the principal enabler of the country to manufacture its homegrown, low-cost yet high quality products such as laptops, tablets, smartphones, TVs, medical equipment, automotive computer boxes, test and measurement equipment, etc. On this ground, not only could we provide a wider range of services in two or three years’ time, we could also drive our local electronics industry towards global competitiveness,” he stressed. (PNA)