The U.S. Partnership for Assured Electronics (USPAE) is inviting electronics manufacturers and related companies to participate in its programs, highlighting the opportunities to collaborate with industry peers and the U.S. government (USG). The USPAE was established in 2020 with a mission of ensuring the USG has access to resilient and trusted electronics supply chains. The USG has many electronics needs, especially for defense- and security-related missions, and the USPAE is lining up funding and collaboration opportunities to address those needs.

Membership in USPAE is open to companies, academic institutions, and nonprofit organizations based in the U.S. or its allies. Members are invited from across the entire supply chain, from research to design, manufacturing, and assembly.

"The USPAE provides industry members with several valuable benefits," said Shane Whiteside, president and CEO at Summit Interconnect and a USPAE board member. "For starters, it opens the door to working with USG customers and related partners and customers. It also fosters collaboration with USG technical leaders, unlocking insights into future needs. And it advocates for policies, programs, and funds to build up resilient, secure supply chains."

The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) recently awarded $42.2 million to USPAE to establish and manage a Defense Electronics Consortium (DEC). The consortium is a vehicle for DoD to contract with trusted partners in industry and academia, including small and medium-sized innovators that typically do not do business with DoD. Through a variety of programs such as conferences, networking events, white papers, and funded projects, the DEC will tackle numerous defense electronics challenges and innovations. Qualifying members of USPAE will automatically have access to the DEC.

The first project to flow through the DEC will be the Lead-Free Defense Electronics Project, which has been funded at $13.9 million and will be led by Purdue University, the University of Maryland, and Auburn University. The project will foster research and action to accelerate the transition to lead-free electronics in aerospace, defense, and other high-performance electronics.

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