North American Competitiveness

About the IPC Department of Defense Printed Circuit Board Executive Agent Task Force

IPC is the electronic interconnect industry's largest and most authoritative representative group and has formed a task force to assist and counsel the Executive Agent. IPC has extremely deep data points on the industry, first-hand comprehension of business matters and regulation, the foremost expertise on all electronic interconnect matters, and all major PCB and Electronic Manufacturing Services (EMS) participants among its membership.

IPC formed a panel of experts from among its membership for the purpose of advocating the positions and policy directions to the PCB Executive Agent. The goal of this task force is to advise the Executive Agent of the actions necessary to the creation and sustenance of a North American PCB industry capable of supporting DoD and prime OEM needs.

IPC Task Force Documents

IPC Policy Recommendations to the Department of Defense Printed Circuit Board Executive Agent
North American Electronic Interconnect Industry Support to the Department of Defense (.pdf)
IPC Printed Board Defense Roadmap
Future Needs of Printed Boards in Department of Defense Electronics Identified by the North American Electronic Interconnect Industry
The ongoing dramatic reduction of the North American printed board industry is a serious concern. The continuing consolidation of the North American printed board manufacturing base combined with continued outsourcing of low-technology, high-volume printed boards to other global regions, if unaddressed, may result in a dramatically reduced capacity to meet the needs of future military electronics.

The appointment of the EA is an important acknowledgement of these concerns. IPC looks forward to working with the EA in addressing the ongoing support of legacy systems and twenty-first century military electronics. The IPC task force created policy recommendations addressing how the DoD and the North American printed board industry can work together to maintain DoD access to advanced technology.
The IPC Defense Roadmap identifies the printed board designs and materials that will be needed to meet future Department of Defense (DoD) and Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) needs. Also discussed in the roadmap are the North American printed board industry's future technology factors and capabilities for defense electronics. The roadmap is an excellent tool to facilitate better communication between the printed board industry, OEMs designing and manufacturing military hardware, the DoD and the military electronics supply chain.

About the Department of Defense Printed Circuit Board Agent

Recognizing a threat to national security, Congress enacted legislation, contained in the FY 2009 National Defense Authorization Act, that directs the Department of Defense (DoD) to create a position of a Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Executive Agent.

Congress directed the Executive Agent to oversee the development and implementation of a PCB and interconnect technology roadmap for DoD. The Executive Agent is required to create a policy to assure that DoD has access to the PCB manufacturing capabilities and the technical expertise necessary to meet future military requirements. The law also requires the Executive Agent to assess and develop a plan to address the PCB supply chain to meet DoD and trustworthiness requirements for PCB use in defense systems.

The Executive Agent is in a unique position to assure that the North American PCB industry is capable to support future DoD PCB requirements. Only an active PCB EA can take action to ensure our national security, help promote state of the art technology within the industry in North America and sustain a domestic industry capable of satisfying DoD requirements.

Learn more about the Department of Defense Printed Circuit Board Executive Agent