I've given a quick tour of the big 3D Robotics factory and R&D center in San Diego before (here), but as some of you may know, we've recently opened a second manufacturing facility 30 minutes across the border, in Tijuana, Mexico. The management team and I were down there this week reviewing operations, so here are some quickie photos so you can see what it looks like.
uDrones is now a subsidiary of 3D Robotics, so one thing the new facility does is the original uDrones function: assemble, test and ship complete UAVs (quads, hexas and planes). Above is the copter assembly line. At left is Lorenzo Lopez, Operations Manager of 3D Robotics, and Jordi Munoz, CEO.
Above: The administration area. Behind it is the PCB assembly line, with the pick-and-place machine and reflow oven at left, and the QA and hand-finishing line at right. This is the new function of the factory, and most of the APM boards are now made there. I forgot to take a picture of it, but it's identical to the pick-and-place line in San Diego, which looks like this:
We'll probably keep the uDrones name, but the website is being revamped, as are all the products. All the pre-made drones will now come with APM 2.x, with the copters defaulting to the uBlox GPS and the planes having a choice between uBlox and MTK. We might have some cool exclusive color schemes, too. Better instructions and support is coming too, as part of the ramping up of the facility.
The good news for everyone is that now that this facility is up and running, backlogs on boards should be much reduced if not eliminated. We have two full-time pick-and-place lines and we can add shifts in Tijuana as demand requires.