Ensuring electronic components are the real deal

Counterfeit electronic components are a growing problem for the electronics industry, often resulting in failures, product recalls and serious safety issues. They also cost industry billions of euros each year. The EU-funded ChipCheck project has developed a new inspection system to establish in under a second whether electronic components are legitimate or counterfeit – helping to eliminate costly product recalls and protecting consumers. The result could be commercially available in under a year

At the moment, manufacturers are unable to check all electronic components – such as those used in aeroplanes, cars, nuclear power plants, and medical devices, for example – even if they would like to. The volume is too large, the protective packaging too obstructive, and the manpower required to do so too costly. And despite precautions, there have been reports of counterfeit components entering the supply chains of even the defence and aerospace industries.