Aerospace and defense electronics suppliers in the U.S. are doing a better job of screening out counterfeit components coming mainly from China, and these gains will be reflected in more public cases of flagged parts, according to one electronics contract manufacturer. “You’re going to see incidences going up because we’re findng them,” said Robert Toppel, president of Axiom Electronics of Beaverton, Ore.
An investigation by the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee found “overwhelming evidence” that counterfeit electronic parts, mostly from China, are making their way into critical systems used in U.S. military aircraft and other weapons systems. The committee faulted both the Department of Defense (DOD) and contractors for either failing to detect, adequately test or report bogus parts.
Counterfeiting remains a serious problem in the aerospace industry. “About 2 percent of the 26 million parts installed on aircraft worldwide are counterfeit; that’s roughly half a million parts ranging from hardware to advanced electronics equipment,” said Ben Jun, vice president of technology for Cryptography Research of San Francisco.