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35+ Years of Soldering Leadership

Jim Smith, PhD ABD


Since 1981, Electronics Manufacturing Sciences has provided the knowledge and hands-on support that enable electronics manufacturers to achieve best-in-class reliability and efficiency. Our clients include the world's largest corporations and many companies still in the startup phase.

We focus on soldering because it is both the core process of electronics manufacturing and the most misunderstood. Most of our work is with electronics manufacturers but we work with all industries that use solder. (For example, we developed the process for soldering rear window defroster clips to glass for automobiles and solved problems with leaking auto radiators. We have also done extensive work with mechanical medical devices as well as medical electronics.) If soldering is involved, we have the expertise and teaching skills to make the process more robust and efficient.

Our Science of Soldering© is the only soldering training and certification that teaches soldering for what it is  —  a scientific process.

Jim Smith is President of Electronics Manufacturing Sciences

We offer classes for operators and technicians, engineers and managers. And we come to you. All classes are taught at  your location.


Science of Soldering© is also available as a self-contained DVD-based program for use by your own instructors.

Soldering is Much More Than Melting Metal

Many people believe that soldering only covers the act of applying liquid metal to component surfaces. That is certainly part of soldering. But soldering involves much, much more, including such things as:

  • Component selection
  • Flux selection
  • Inspection strategy
  • Equipment selection and


  • PCB specifications
  • Alloy selection
  • Data collection and
  • Failure analysis
  • Customer education
  • Layout
  • Acceptance criteria
  • Tools selection
  • Test methodology

Often, contract assembly companies perform some or all of the assembly. Choosing and managing  contract  assemblers requires knowledge and experience. We know how to identify the perfect contract manufacturer for your needs (and, just as important, identify those that are not qualified).

Our Long History of Innovations

Over the years, we have been leaders in several process developments. We devised the technique for prevention of heat damage during hand soldering (and are still the only source for the technique through our Science of Soldering© education). We pioneered the use of no-clean fluxes in automotive and telecom electronics (and are now very active in saving clients from dangerous fluxes that are wrongly sold with the "no clean" label). Long before lead–free solder became common, we were advising clients about the challenges they would encounter in both processing and product performance — and how to make the switch to lead-free easily.

Completely Independent With No Conflicts of Interest

Unlike consultants working for manufacturers of chemicals or equipment, Electronics Manufacturing Sciences is completely independent. We do not sell any tools, chemicals, or equipment. Since we have no conflicts of interest, you can be confident that all our advice is based solely on what is in your best interests rather than what will line our pockets.

We Make Clients Self-Sufficient

Most consultants keep clients in the dark and constantly dependent on the consultant's advice. We're different. Our mission is to provide all the knowledge you need to be self-sufficient. We'll give you the knowledge and hands-on help to establish world-class processes and procedures and we'll give followup advice for free. If you want to see us, we will come to you; but you won't need to see us often.

Science of Soldering© was created by James A. (Jim) Smith, PhD ABD. Jim began work in electronics assembly in 1965 and founded Electronics Manufacturing Sciences in 1981 to teach soldering as a unified science.

"Soldering was seen as a dark art and process engineers operated by the seat of their pants," Jim explains. "Defect rates were horrendous. We devised Science of Soldering© to provide the missing process knowledge in terms that everyone in the factory could understand and use. We showed that perfect soldering is not only possible but easy. The whole point of  Science of Soldering© is to make perfect soldering easy and inexpensive."

Many thousands of engineers, operators, technicians and managers worldwide have attended Science of Soldering© classes in their companies. Jim’s soldering workshops have also been featured in NEPCON professional development programs throughout North America and Europe.

A specialist in process development and troubleshooting, Jim has helped set up new manufacturing plants and reconfiguring existing plants in more than 15 countries.

In addition to teaching, Jim is active in root cause analysis and resolution of product failures. For more than 35 years, Detroit automakers have turned to Jim when problems arise in product launches. Jim has designed and implemented soldering process improvements in hundreds of electronics manufacturing facilities on four continents including pioneering work in the use of no-clean fluxes and lead-free solders in automotive and telecom electronics.

Jim’s articles have appeared in more than 100 publications worldwide. His quality management  book with Frank Whitehall Optimizing Quality in Electronics Assembly: A Heretical Approach (McGraw-Hill Professional Publishing, NY 1996) changed the way electronics reliability is understood and managed. His column Unconventional Wisdom appeared monthly in Assembly Magazine for more than ten years and he remains a regular Assembly contributor.