The electronics industry has been clamoring for a federal RoHS law for more than a year. With the proliferation of individual state laws that conflict on requirements, the industry wants one law that supercedes state law and makes compliance infinitely easier. More than 50 percent of electronics industry leaders recently polled are in favor of federal legislation.
The relief may come from a bill soon to be introduced by Representative Hilda Solis from California who is slated to take over the top spot in the House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Environment and Hazardous Materials. According to the association, AeA (Advancing the Business of Technology), she is already promoting federal legislation that mirrors parts of California’s Electronic Waste Recycling Act (California’s RoHS). Currently Minnesota, Maine, Maryland, New Jersey, Tennessee, Vermont, Washington and Wisconsin have similar RoHS laws.
Given the widespread industry support for the concept of a U.S. RoHS, it’s likely the Democratic Congress will support federal legislation to consolidate state laws into one comprehensive federal law.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.