PXI in race for time

1 min read

A day out a Silverstone for the PXI Show demonstrated that PXI is still not on the radar of many electronics designers.

The Show was a small affair, organised by a number of the leading players in the PXI sector, with a conference running alongside. We at New Electronics lent a hand with pre-show publicity with our supplement in the May 14 issue, but it was clear yesterday that the perception remains that PXI is a technology for manufacturing test. This is clearly a source of some frustration to the vendors and integrators who see the advantages of having a modular platform in an engineering environment can have considerable advantages in terms of cost, flexibility and reuse – and there were a number of people from design consultancies and OEMs whose presence proved the validity of the argument. To briefly go off on a tangent, we did a reader survey a few months ago which revealed a number of 'critical issues', of which you will be hearing more over the coming weeks and months. One of these was frustrations with, or the pressures of, time to market – including a speeding up of the prototyping stage. Coming back to the point, having a modular platform that is inherently reconfigurable and is also ideal for automating tests (for example in an environmental chamber), can be a perfect way of communicating between engineering and NPI. Not only is there commonality with hardware and software, it also becomes easy to create a closed-loop that can aid manufacturability, testability and quality when it progresses onto volume production. Some of the vendors yesterday see this as the biggest potential area of growth for their technology, so why the slow uptake? "People just don't have the time," one exhibitor told me, "they know it makes sense, can save them money, and can save them time - but they just have the hours to put in at the start to look at new technology." It all ties in with our 'critical issues' and more on such topics will follow...