Many companies are taking on new initiatives and policies for their clients and employees in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, and CUI Devices is among them. The company is supporting clients that produce key medical equipment like ventilators, test equipment, and patient monitors by prioritizing and expediting free product samples. CUI Devices is also following social distancing guidelines and clean workplace practices for their employees.
“We are committed to OEMs, individuals, and companies designing medical equipment to combat COVID-19, by allocating the necessary resources to make their projects a priority,” said CUI Devices President Jeff Schnabel. “We are grateful to the many companies stepping up during these uncertain times to build the equipment necessary to fight COVID-19. CUI Devices also gives our utmost thanks to the hardworking medical teams around the world, while extending our thoughts to the patients and families impacted by this health crisis,” Schnabel concluded.
CUI Devices tracks its beginning to 1989, when CUI Inc. was founded. Based in Tualatin, Oregon, close to downtown Portland, CUI Inc. started by selling oscilloscopes and electromechanical components, then began designing and selling power supplies. That line of business began to grow, culminating in a portfolio of well-regarded AC/DC power supplies and DC/DC converters.
In September 2019, a group of CUI Inc. senior managers purchased the industry-leading electronic components part of the business to form CUI Devices. This new company is focused on supporting and expanding its electronic components line and plans to add new technology categories to continue providing customers throughout the world with high-quality products and service.
Excellence, Relationship and Service are Keys to Success
CUI Devices manufactures and distributes products that serve a variety of industries, including communications, consumer electronic, medical, and IoT or the “internet of things.” The company’s electronic components products are used in a range of applications and fall into several product categories:
- Audio products such as speakers, buzzers, and microphones for GPS devices, security systems, and medical equipment.
- Interconnect products like connectors and cable assemblies for industrial devices and network applications that use a direct interface.
- Motion and sensors including rotary encoders and stepper servo motors for industrial, automation, robotics, and renewable energy applications.
- Switches such as DIP switches for motherboards, expansion cards, and auxiliary cards.
- Thermal Management products like heat sinks, Peltier devices, and DC fans for industrial, consumer electronics, and scientific devices.
AutomationDirect sells CUI Devices’ motion control, sensors, and encoders. CUI Devices’ motion control components include stepper motors and rotary encoders. A stepper motor is a synchronous electric motor that converts digital pulses into a mechanical shaft rotation. As a digital input-output device, this type of motor is best used in applications where control signals appear as digital pulses, such as robotics, pick-and-place machines, and machine tools. Stepper motors are highly reliability and feature a simple construction, allowing them to be used in almost any industrial environment and application.
CUI Devices produces several variations of rotary encoders, highlighted by their groundbreaking AMT series encoder line. An encoder is a device that senses mechanical motion and is typically mounted to the back of a stepper motor. It translates motion such as speed, direction, and shaft angle into electrical signals. Detection of shaft direction is essential in automated equipment as it often initiates other operations within the machine. Encoders are used in a variety of applications that require monitoring and control of a mechanical system, such as aerial drones and computer input devices.
In addition to its high-quality products, CUI Devices is known for providing excellent customer service and helping customers develop the design solutions to meet their unique needs. CUI Devices is constantly striving to innovate to benefit their customers, whether their needs are based on efficiency, cost, or flexibility.
CUI Devices is committed to consumer success, as represented by their core values of excellence, relationship, and service. As a collaborative manufacturer, the company designs, manufactures, and markets a range of electronic components for the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) marketplace.
“CUI Devices is excited to continue to build relationships with customers and partners by focusing on making the design engineer’s job easier and more successful through best-in-class online experiences, technical support, and customer service,” said Chief Executive Officer Matt McKenzie. “These are foundational to our company and continued success.”
Committed to Global Expansion and Local Initiatives
CUI Devices’ employees continue to expand their global reach. Headquartered in Lake Oswego, Oregon, just 10 miles from downtown Portland, CUI Devices operates manufacturing facilities in Canada, China, Taiwan, and Japan and quality centers in Lake Oswego and Beijing, China. The company also has sales offices in Lake Oswego, the United Kingdom, and Tokyo, Japan.
In addition to being a leader in the electronic components industry, CUI Devices supports many community activities in the Portland area. Each year, the company closes its offices on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day to allow employees to give back to their community by volunteering in various organizations. Employees also work closely year-round with local organizations like Young Life, ActSix, Friends of the Children, and Friends of Trees.
Much like AutomationDirect, CUI Devices is also passionate about supporting and mentoring future engineers through STEM outreach programs such as FIRST Robotics, a not-for-profit STEM engagement program for children in grade K-12 worldwide. The company has donated its AMT encoder kits and accessories to the FIRST Robotics Competition for more than five years. The items are then offered through the FIRST Choice program to more than 3,600 teams of high school students who are participating in the competition.
“We look forward to the opportunity to support FIRST and the FIRST Robotics Competition each year,” stated Jeff Smoot, VP of Engineering at CUI Devices. “Their mission to inspire the future-generation of engineers aligns closely with our own values.”
Building Toward the Future
In May 2020, CUI Devices announced a worldwide global distribution agreement with AutomationDirect who will distribute and market CUI Devices’ innovative line of AMT modular encoders.
“Our AMT capacitive encoders are a natural fit in AutomationDirect’s product portfolio and will benefit from their knowledgeable sales staff and relationships with key industrial customers,” stated Jeff Smoot, VP of Engineering at CUI Devices. “We are excited to partner with AutomationDirect and their well-respected reputation in the industrial controls and automation market.”
This agreement is the first step in CUI Devices’ plans to expand its offerings. To continue its mission of collaborating with OEMs to design products, CUI will introduce new product technologies, recruit and retain talented employees, expand manufacturing capabilities, and expand global reach.
“CUI Devices will continue to build and value relationships with customers and partners that began via CUI Inc.,” said CEO McKenzie. “We are committed to our customers and look forward to guiding our company to offer even more to help them be successful.”