Component Markings – the way of the dodo bird?

A recent blog post in EETimes got us a bit concerned that there may be a trend starting among component manufacturers to stop marking individual components. Markings are NOT just for hobbyists — this is why we think they are important:

  1. Markings make debugging and inspection much easier. The person doing the work has confidence that the correct part is installed.
  2. Our AOI (automated optical inspection) machine inspects these marks to ensure the right part is properly installed.
  3. Suppliers do make mistakes and sometimes ship the wrong parts labelled as the correct parts. The markings on the part body help us detect this at first-article or incoming inspections. Doing so, we can head off significant rework that can result from running the incorrect part at high speed.
  4. Other errors can also occur occasionally, and rework is less error-prone when the parts are marked.
  5. Prototyping where assembly is manual is also much easier when parts are marked.

You can read the article that got us thinking here >>