Originally Published MPMN
MD&M MINNEAPOLIS 2009: FIRST-TIME EXHIBITORS
LaBarge Gets a Charge Out of Medical Electronic Assemblies
LaBarge’s selective solder machine uses drop-jet fluxing, ultraviolet and convection preheat, and precision-controlled solder nozzles.
At first glance, LaBarge Inc. (St. Louis) would appear to manufacture electronic assemblies for products that are about as far removed from the hospital as possible: military aircrafts, radar systems, satellite launch vehicles, airport security equipment, and oilfield tooling, for example. But don’t let that fool you. While the company has had a range of industrial customers since its inception in 1953, it has reached a point today where the fabrication of medical electronic assemblies has become a more-important part of its business.
“The company began as a steel pipe distributor,” remarks Gregg Mozdy, LaBarge’s director of business development. “After rapid growth, it diversified and entered the electronics manufacturing industry in 1967. Since then, we have specialized in manufacturing high-reliability electronics.”
Manufacturing for the medical device sector has occupied the company for almost four decades, Mozdy explains. “In 1970, LaBarge’s product offerings included the world’s first electronic thermometer. But eventually, we decided to no longer manufacture our own proprietary products, instead choosing to serve as a manufacturing service partner to large medical device developers.” In December 2008, the company acquired Pensar Electronic Solutions LLC, further expanding its footprint in the medical electronics market.
The company manufactures a host of electronic assemblies, from interconnect systems and printed circuit board assemblies to box-level assemblies, panel builds, and mechanical and electromechanical assemblies. It also offers prototyping services, engineering support, flexible materials management, and complete testing—all of which are compliant with the RoHS directive.
Covering a large swath of the biomedical industry, applications include drug-delivery systems; vascular, neural, and aural monitoring equipment; cardiac diagnostic, defibrillation, and monitoring equipment; cataract surgery systems; and respiratory therapy systems.
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