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Flexible solutions for your global regulatory compliance needs: ACS

thesiliconreview-michael-proffitt-ceo-acs-17The global product compliance environment is continually evolving. It’s not enough to be compliant today; manufacturers have to plan for tomorrow. And it’s not enough to have the most advanced testing methods and equipment today; we have to adapt to meet the needs of tomorrow.

While ACS offers next-generation testing services to our customers, ACS prides on the ability to build strong partnerships that enables it to remain responsive and flexible in the face of continual change. The company is committed to providing the support customers need to ensure their products overcome hurdles and move efficiently to their target markets.

Delivering Superior Client Service

Founded in 2001, ACS combines extensive expertise in compliance testing and regulatory approvals with on-the-ground manufacturing experience. The company’s goal is to reduce compliance-testing burdens and streamline the approval process.

Its extensive facilities enable us to offer a wide variety of testing services, including EMC testing, Wireless Certifications, Product Safety Approvals, Quality and Performance evaluations, and much more. Employing a variety of anechoic facilities and other advanced testing environments, ACS is able to provide customers with targeted solutions for their product regulatory and compliance testing needs. We continually extend the scope of its operations to meet new requirements as they develop.

Its intense focus on customer service is the cornerstone of its approach: “we listen carefully to our customers’ requirements and adapt our services to ensure they meet each customer’s objectives. Whether they need facilities on short notice or require assistance with compliance challenges, ACS is there as an advocate for our customers. Their best interests are our top priority,” says Michael Proffitt, CEO.

People Make the Difference; says Michael Proffitt

We strive for excellence and professionalism in everything we do. Our courteous and knowledgeable staff is ready to assist customers at every step of the process, and we make every effort to communicate clearly and effectively. From providing updates and reports to seeking feedback so we can continue to improve, ACS is dedicated to serving our customers fully. It is vital that our high level of customer service is as advanced and industry leading as our commitment to accuracy and our degree of accreditation.

Reliable Solutions

Reliability Testing: Solutions are what we provide. At ACS, we understand design engineers’ needs, because we’ve been there ourselves. With our years of hands-on industry experience and state-of-the-art facilities, we are fully equipped to provide comprehensive, flexible compliance solutions to help you get your products to market.

At ACS, we are dedicated to the success of your product. In order to be competitive in the commercial or retail marketplace, a device must prove to be both safe and reliable in a variety of environmental conditions. The Reliability Testing Group at ACS is experienced in conducting qualification testing to the most stringent standards. We apply stresses to your product in order to expose weaknesses, supporting the concept of heightened quality and continuous improvement.

If a standard does not exist for your product, we can help you devise a test plan that will fit your particular needs. Whether it is searching for a mode of failure or testing for reliability, the valuable data we provide will contribute to the success of your product and your business. 

Product Design Validation: Design validation is the effort of testing a device in accordance with defined standards to ensure that it will perform within the limits of its intended use and environment. The accepted reality that reinforces the need for design validation is that if anything can go wrong, it will. This is magnified by the prospect of shipping unproven units into a variety of applications and environments over the lifetime of a product.

Many companies earn quality manufacturing certifications, but these certifications provide no guarantee of adequate design validation. The cost of insufficient design validation is experienced every day. In reality, products often do under-perform or fail.

Product failures are disappointing for customers and can bring huge costs to manufacturers in the form of customer returns and complaints. Results can be devastating from a product release with poor product design validation.

Signature Capture: Electronic signatures are now the norm in retail environments as well as general industry. Because a signature capture pad must withstand thousands of stylus interactions, it is helpful to evaluate different screen materials for wear resistance. ACS has developed a way to simulate repetitive signatures in various dirt/dust environments to help alleviate the “scratched screen” phenomenon.

EMC Compliance Testing

EMC is the core. It is where we started as a company in 2001, and continues to be a primary focus as ACS evolves. And, as both industries and standards evolve, ACS is right there as a partner to work with manufacturers to meet their goals.

As one of the top-ranked labs in the country, ACS is accredited to ISO17025 for a wide range of test methods and standards. We provide EMC testing solutions to meet requirements for:

  • FCC
  • Industry Canada
  • CE Marking for EMC Directive (European Union)
  • VCCI (Japan)
  • BSMI (Taiwan)
  • MIC (Korea) and many others

Why Partner With ACS for EMC Compliance?

ACS has put together the best team available: experienced engineers that once worked as compliance engineers at companies like Motorola, GE, Harris, NCR, and Panasonic. These experts are backed by the right principles, the right testing facilities, and an overwhelming desire to help your business succeed. Keep in mind we’ve been where you are: bringing new products to market. That’s why we know the importance of doing everything in our power to overcome your EMC compliance testing challenges, and build dynamic efficiency into your EMC compliance process.

The Success stories

B/E Aerospace: Founded in 1987, B/E Aerospace has grown exponentially, establishing itself as a leading manufacturer of aircraft interior equipment. They’ve worked with numerous compliance test labs to ensure that their products meet Airbus and general aviation compliance standards. In the past, their seat models’ testing processes have taken longer than a month to complete. During a recent project with ACS, the testing was accomplished in less than four days to meet an aggressive goal.

The seat was a layback aircraft pod, designed for executive seating. There were numerous safety requirements to meet, chiefly relating to noise and energy limits. The deeply electronic seats must not interfere with pacemakers or other electronic devices, while still maintaining the voltage to control the seat movement actuators, calculators for reclining and resistance, for example.

Frustrated with the lengthy process of their previous labs, B/E Aerospace partnered with ACS for their testing, stressing the importance of the aggressive schedule. “They were able to accommodate us immediately,” recalls Alain Ledo, a B/E Aerospace certification engineer. Before testing began, B/E staff raised concerns to ACS that their seats would be too large for the testing chambers. ACS immediately requested that they send photos and dimensions, then measured their semi-anechoic chamber and determined how to make the seats fit at a certain angle.

The team at ACS also understood B/E’s strict time requirements: only four days to complete the entire test. “There’s always a required timeline,” Alain says. “Otherwise other important deadlines can’t be met. … This timeline was aggressive. We needed to complete testing in only four days.” The ACS team had it done in three.

“The ACS staff assume a level of responsibility that… feels as if our challenges and successes are also theirs,” Alain notes. “It’s comforting to know that they care about our concerns, such as the product getting out on time. They accommodated our needs as much as possible. They’re an excellent lab to work with.” That sense of shared responsibility is what keeps B/E coming back to ACS for more product testing. “Even after the testing, they continued to support our team by providing the testing report in a very timely fashion,” Alain says. “We requested to have it in two weeks; they got it to us in one. Their commitment to timeliness is impressive.”

Synapse Wireless: Based in the engineering hub of Huntsville, Alabama, Synapse Wireless specializes in intelligent wireless control and monitoring technologies, including radio modules.

One module, the SM200, is a proprietary implementation of 802.15.4, used in controlling the current surging through wires in solar panels. Synapse needed the module tested to new CE Marking standards, such as the new version of EN 300 328 for wireless and radio devices. That’s when they turned to Advanced Compliance Solutions.

The majority of labs in the US remain unequipped to perform these tests. ACS, on the other hand, had invested in the new equipment to handle the testing for the new CE standards. “ACS is one of the few labs who can perform the testing to that standard,” says Chris Messick, a compliance engineer at Synapse. “I don’t know if any other test lab in the area has the necessary equipment.”

After a brief consultation process, the Synapse team realized that they would have to readjust the module’s power levels before the testing process, since they were using a new higher gain antenna than the one they had previously used. But this only took a day—after that, Chris recalls, “It was a fairly straightforward experience.”

Synapse was impressed with ACS’s quick turnaround time on projects: they consistently delivered results within one to two weeks on complex compliance projects. And because Synapse avoided a redesign of the module and a second round of testing, Chris credits ACS with proposing “cost-saving solutions for the overall project.”

“They’re very knowledgeable about the standards and regulations,” Chris says. “And they are always available to sit with me, or have a phone call to discuss our direction and expose any surprises before they become an issue for us. They were able to anticipate our challenges, to provide clear expectations, and helped our team to understand where to re-examine our product before we set it into testing. Simply put, the ACS team knows their stuff.”

Meet the man behind the success

thesiliconreview-compliance-cover-17Michael Proffitt, CEO: Technology alone doesn’t ensure effective and efficient compliance testing; it is the relationships and the trust forged between ACS and valued customers that delivers outstanding, expedient, results. Co-founder and CEO Michael Proffitt believes that these partnerships enable his company to accomplish the goals and objectives of each customer – and help them achieve success in their competitive marketplace.

In 1987, while working towards his degree from the University of Georgia, Michael scored a position with Siemens Energy & Automation, Inc., one of the world’s most prestigious and innovative engineering and electronics companies. There, he progressed from Marketing Analyst to Sales Engineer and finally to National Account Manager – and found time to complete an MBA in Finance from Georgia State University.

In 2001, with over 14 years of manufacturing industry experience, Michael founded ACS with his brother, Scott. Their goal was, and is, to deliver superior client service in the testing and certification industry through practical experience and a culture that focuses on customer relationships.

Since its founding, ACS has, with the help of dedicated employees, grown into a company that meets this objective and of which Michael is proud to be a part. As CEO, Michael is responsible for overseeing the general operations of ACS, as well as all financial and accounting activities.

Michael is a father of a daughter and two sons. When he’s not helping customers overcome regulatory and compliance hurtles, he’s helping his kids surmount Eagle Scout challenges. In addition to scouting, Michael enjoys sailing, camping, and catching a college football game whenever he can.

“Our EMC Compliance offerings are truly global in scope. We have provided EMC Compliance testing services for market entry into over 50 countries on 6 continents.”

"We designed our industry-leading facilities to adapt to the complex needs of our customers, meet the demands of global compliance, and provide optimal service throughout the process."

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