August’s volunteer spotlight is Michael Hopkins, who, in conjunction with Working Group WG14, has contributed to the issues of ESD Simulators and the problems seen in the industry of reproducibility of the ESD test. Hopkins is currently chair of WG14 and in late 1990 (and again in 2004) he produced a half day seminar for ESD service packs. In 2005, Hopkins produced and presented a half day tutorial for ESD and EMI at the system level.
Educational and professional background
Hopkins spent nine years in the US Navy as a Communications Technician and Naval Instructor. After leaving the military, he attended Franklin Institute in Boston and Northeastern University for Electronic Engineering. Hopkins went on to teach electronics at RETS, a two year technical school in Boston. After numerous positions in the communications industries, he began working for Key Tek.
Hopkins is currently the manager of the Customer Technical Center at Thermo Electron Corporation. Hopkins was involved in the development of a commercial ESD Simulator and has worked closely with industry and standards organizations to develop ESD test methods for finished products that would be repeatable and reproducible. By mid 1980, the need for automated test systems for ESD qualification of semiconductor devices became apparent, leading to his participation with standards development within the ESD association and other bodies, which continues to the present.
Personal information, interests, and hobbies
For recreation, Hopkins has varied interests, including cycling (10 to 15 miles a day), and all kinds of music. He currently holds a private pilot certificate and is working towards and instrument rating. He is also active with amateur radio and is an avid reader with a preference toward science fiction.
Hopkins is happily married with eight step children and seven grand children. He and his wife have fostered several children ranging in age from infants to teenagers.
Benefits of being an ESDA volunteer
According to Hopkins, “Working within the ESDA has helped tremendously by providing a means of staying close to industry trends. The ability to stay in touch with industry leaders helps define what’s important for our customers, and allows us to more effectively address industry needs. And just as important, the tremendous amount of knowledge continuously brought to the table in open forums, symposia, standards meetings and simply hallway conversation is irreplaceable.”