The horror of humidity

It was possibly one of the most innovative electro-mechanical systems the company had ever developed. Not only did it offer numerous technical advantages over competitive products, it was also designed to be much more reliable too.

Indeed, because it was designed with high reliability as one of its unique selling points, the engineering team that developed it took months to painstakingly evaluate every component used inside it.

Not only that, after the first prototypes of the system had been produced they were subjected to hours of rigorous testing in the company’s UK research and development centre before the folks in the production department were finally given the green light to proceed with full-scale manufacturing.

When the system was finally launched in Europe, it was met with great accolades by the press and the public alike. Not only was it deemed to be one of the most inventive systems that the company had produced, it also went on to find great commercial success too.

But the marketing director wasn’t happy just to rest on his laurels. Keen to explore the potential of dominating the global market, he flew out to Asia, where he secured several lucrative deals with key Chinese distributors who were equally impressed by the capabilities of the new product.

Needless to say, the managing director was very pleased with the efforts of his marketing manager. As product sales in Asia started to soar, more than a few congratulatory bottles of bubbly were opened at the UK headquarters.

But the brief triumph was not to last. While complaints about the reliability of the system were few and far between in Europe, in Asia it was an entirely different story. Indeed, in southern China and in Thailand especially, customers were rather dissatisfied with the reliability of the new product and complaints started to flood back to the UK headquarters.

Needless to say, the UK technical team were rather distraught when they heard the news. And the technical director immediately ordered his team to get hold of some of the faulty systems to find out what might be causing the problems.

It didn’t take long before the reason behind the failures became apparent. You see, while the UK production team had tested the system extensively under conditions that it might encounter in Europe, they had not anticipated that it would ever be deployed in extremely humid climates in Asia.

And sadly, it was that very high humidity that had led to corrosion on some of the system’s contacts and components, which had then led to the failures that were being experienced by the company’s customers.

Fortunately, having identified the problems, the engineers were quick to fix them and I’m now pleased to say that the new system is once again enjoying the success that it deserves – wherever it is deployed across the globe.

Dave Wilson
Editor, Electronicstalk

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