intelliFLEX Newsletter || October 17, 2018

The Top 4 Ways the USMCA Will Affect intelliFLEX Members

By Jim Donnelly

After months of negotiations, posturing, and rhetoric, North American negotiators finally have a new trade deal in place. Barring the unexpected, once ratified the USMCA will replace NAFTA as North America's governing trade pact.

Media on both sides of the border have, unsurprisingly, focused on big-ticket provisions like rules for automakers and dairy farmers. But other, less talked-about elements of the USMCA will have more of an impact on North America's Flexible and Hybrid Electronics (FHE) sector – so much so that we couldn't cover everything in this article (we've included a list of items at the end that were beyond our scope). 

Negotiators agreed to various new provisions and "modernizations" on digital trade, e-commerce, and intellectual property, among other things. And though the electronics industry wasn't directly addressed in the agreement, several elements of the USMCA will no doubt affect the industry and its companies in significant ways. 

Here are the top four ways the USMCA will affect intelliFLEX members:

  1. No broad changes to market access or tariffs. Take a deep breath and relax, because there are no planned changes to tariffs or market access regarding electronics once the USMCA is ratified and implemented. 
Read More About USMCA and FHE

Spotlight on Funding Opportunities

Innovation Solutions Canada challenges:
Wireless Comms Detection System, Life Sign Monitoring System

Innovative Solutions Canada is a federal program with more than $100 million in funds available to support and help scale Canada's innovators and entrepreneurs. Twenty federal departments and agencies are participating. The program supports the development of early-stage, pre-commercial innovations. 

The program works with involved departments and agencies to hold public challenges for innovation. These challenges are "designed around a desired outcome rather than a known product or process specification," leaving the door wide open for innovation.

Two current challenges that may interest intelliFLEX members are from Correctional Service Canada: its proposed Detection System for Wireless Communication and Life Sign Monitoring System for inmates.

Learn more on the Industry Canada website.


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TF Massif launches Smart Electronic Banner
to disrupt large format print industry

Vancouver-based TF Massif, a maker of extra-large flexible electronics, will launch interactive, smart and dynamically luminated electronics banner technology at this month's SGIA Expo in Las Vegas. The company will launch the technology through its marketing arm, CAPTIVA Innovations. It says the technology will disrupt the large format print industry, adding that the product will allow large print shops to produce e-banners in-house using existing large format manufacturing line equipment.
Full Story

Array Marketing acquires point-of-sale
display manufacturer Willson & Brown                         

Toronto-based Array Marketing, a CPES2018 award winner, has acquired Warsaw, Poland-based Willson & Brown. Array says the deal will help it enhance its cost-effective, global manufacturing capacity, while also providing a portal into the European "prestige beauty space." Willson & Brown will operate as an Array company under the terms of the deal. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Full Story

Brewer Science announces RDL-first    
fan-out packaging material

Brewer Science recently announced its latest products, which includes additions to the BrewerBOND group of temporary bonding materials and the first iteration of its BrewerBUILD line of thin spin-on packaging materials. The company's latest BrewerBOND products can be combined to create the company's first dual-layer system for temporary product wafer bonding and de-bonding. The company says its new BrewerBUILD product was specifically created for redistribution layer (RDL) first fan-out wafer-level packaging (FOWLP).
Full story

C2MI to add stealth dicing to its capabilities

C2MI, a center of excellence for advanced packaging and microsystems in Bromont, Que., will add new equipment to allow for stealth dicing, a laser-based technique for cutting up silicon wafers, after acquiring a fully automatic DFL 7340 laser saw from Japan's Disco Corp. The saw has several advantages including the fact that it uses a dry (as opposed to water-based) process, and its allowance of improvised exploitation of wafers. For more information on the service you can contact C2MI, the MiQro Innovation Collaboration Centre, at
Full story

Sun Chemical names Myron Petruch      
President and CEO

New Jersey-based Sun Chemical has named Myron Petruch, the former president of Sun Chemical Performance Pigments and General Manager of the company's Pigments Product Division, as its new President and CEO. Petruch succeeds Rudi Lenz, who is transitioning to a new role as vice-chair of the board. During his time at Sun Chemical's Performance Pigments division, Petruch made eight acquisitions and the division experienced eight consecutive years of record sales. In 2017 Petruch was named an executive officer of Sun Chemical's parent company, DIC Corp., and he has been recognized as "Man of the Year" by the Metro New York Printing Ink Association.
Full story

intelliFLEX Advisory Board member
receives IEC award

intelliFLEX Advisory Board member Haridoss Sarma, of GO TO SCOUT 4 R&T, was one of eight Canadians to recently receive an International Electochemical Commission (IEC) 1906 Award. Mr. Sarma's award was in recognition of his involvement in in IEC TC 113, including his role as IEC convenor in JWG 1, where he helped develop nanotechnology vocabulary. The award recognizes international experts that help to significantly advance the work of the IEC. The number of Canadian recipients of the 1906 Award in 2018 equals an all-time high set in 2005.
Full story

Nanogrande to launch new additive 
manufacturing system at Fabtech 2018

Montreal-based Nanogrande will launch the MPL-1, its new additive manufacturing system, at this year's Fabtech conference. The system has a patented method of particle assembly the company says will "revolutionize" the additive manufacturing industry. MPL-1 will allow assembly of metal particles of different sizes, shapes, and types. The company says it is the first to achieve uniform layering and controlled packing density of metal particles below five microns. Nanogrande's President and founder, Juan Schneider, will give a technical presentation at the conference to elaborate on the new technology.  

Full story

C2MI and Varitron to announce Advanced 
Manufacturing Center at IDTechEX Show

Bromont, QC-based C2MI and Saint-Hubert, QC-based Varitron will co-launch their Advanced Manufacturing Center at November's IDTechEX Show! in Santa Clara, Calif. The Center will offer state-of-the-art equipment in the Printed Electronics, Circuit Assembly, Nano Protection and Advanced Cooling fields as well as an integrated supply chain leading to high volume production. C2MI and Varitron's highly skilled teams are available to assist companies with product development and processes.

intelliFLEX signs MOU with Taiwan Smart
Textiles Association

The intelliFLEX Innovation Alliance and Taiwan Smart Textiles Association (TSTA) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for mutual cooperation. The agreement states the two organizations will work together in three main ways: 1) To accumulate research and development experiences from related institutions to connect smart textile products supply chains; 2) To support mutual visits between members in both parties and create an environment for cooperation; and 3) To encourage members in both parties to develop value-added projects. 

Full story

intelliFLEX expands board of directors;
Varitron's Lavoie joins

Patrice Lavoie, of electronic manufacturing services (EMS) provider Varitron, has joined intelliFLEX's Board
of Directors. Lavoie is an industry veteran with more
than 22 years of experience, having previously worked at CMC Electronics and Ultra Electronics, along with having experience in technology transfer and military applications. Lavoie has an industrial engineering background combined with IPC Classs 3 training and had previously worked as a business unit manager, director of operations, and supply chain manager, among other roles.

Full story

Spotlight on new members

TF Massif
Vancouver-based TF Massif builds the world's largest flexible electrified signs and assemblies. With 40 years of experience in thin film assemblies and working with a cross disciplinary team combining material, electrical, mechanical and print engineers, TF Massif has developed a proprietary Large Area Roll to Roll selective process. This has given the company the ability to fabricate the most cost effective conductive Large Area Flexible Printed Circuits in the world. 

CEMworks, from Winnipeg, develops advanced software for fast modeling of electromagnetic wave phenomena in complex electronic and optical systems. The software enables broadband Method-of-Moments solution of large multiscale problems of electromagnetic scattering on composite metal-dielectric 3D targets in homogeneous or stratified media. CEMworks' software is applicable for a wide range of industrial and academic applications.


The annual IDTechEX Show! will take place this November 14 and 15 in Santa Clara, California.

The show presents the latest emerging technologies at one event, with eight concurrent conferences and a single exhibition covering 3D Printing, Electric Vehicles, Energy Storage, Graphene, the Internet of Things, Printed Electronics, Sensors and Wearable Technology.

If you're attending or exhibiting at the show, please stop by the Canadian Pavilion to meet with our 10 member exhibitors:

Canada was well represented at last year's show with more than 50 Canadian organizations on hand, more than 15 exhibitors, and three award wins.

Industry INTELLIGENCE to get ahead

Read our latest intelliWEAR use case

CTT Group: Adding smarts to your driver's seat explores a future in which motorized vehicles have the embedded intelligence to decide if their operator is fit to take control. Insurance companies already offer driver monitoring tools that reward good driving habits with reduced insurance rates. Will a smart seat be next?
Log in to the intelliFLEX Members Portal and locate the PDF in the Publications section of our website.

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