Since the development of automotive electronics is skyrocketing, we expect unlimited opportunities for the DP Patterning technology.

The volume of electronics in modern vehicles continues to grow and so far we have only seen the first glimpse of potential for our solutions on the automotive market. Meeting very high demands on quality and fierce competition in cost efficiency, the DP Patterning technology has the opportunity to become a substantial part of the development. So far, our machine portfolio for the automotive market consists of both electrical and thermal applications, as well as interior and exterior applications such as mirror heaters.

Customer Scenario

Customer

The customer develops, manufactures, and sells products to the competitive and technology intense automotive industry. Both interior and exterior products with electronic functionalities are produced on their sites. They operate four manufacturing sites and have headquarters in US. The manufacturing sites produce finished products starting from electronic assembly to assembly of finished products.

The customer has searched for in-house production of flexible PCB due to intellectual property (IP) issues when distributing the electronic design to their previous PCB manufacturer. They also wanted to be able to develop their own technologies to strengthen their position on the market. The aggressive expansion into electric vehicles did not allow safe sourcing with competitive pricing when the market capability was investigated. They found that an in-house alternative would mitigate the sourcing risk for the aggressive expansion and protect the IP created by new innovative technologies.

Solution

The customer decided to implement new assembly technology, together with manufacturing of flexible circuit boards, aimed for electronic and heater applications in the vehicles. DP Patterning’s mechanical process provided high capacity for the expansion, possible new technology development with unique properties and protected the IP developed in the company when the DPP process is installed in existing manufacturing facilities. In addition, the cost for the produced components was drastically reduced, so market expectation for annual price reductions could be met for years.

Result

In 2018, DP Patterning successfully installed the system in one of the customer’s European facilities, to support the sales and marketing activities with prototype or products for the customers. Customer interest was astonishingly high, and high-volume production started within one year on the DPP production line. The proven process led to increasing volumes from customers and prototype requests from the sales and marketing department. The second machine was installed in 2021 and commissioned to volume production after three months. In the meantime, DP Patterning has supported the customer with innovation and technology development to strengthen their position on the market. A long-term strategic partnership has been established where DP Patterning’s research and development skills in printed electronics came to use in the development program.

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