Born and raised in Mexico, Herminio Menchaca teaches at the University of Guadalajara. He had a
passion for craft and design from an early age, something that would grow along with his thirst
for knowledge, hunger for travel and talent for technology. His unique combination of skill and
drive set Herminio on a road that would cover internships and scholarships in South Korea, India
and Japan, before bringing him to NXP, where he works as a design engineer. We recently caught up
with Herminio to get a lowdown on his designs and work process.
Mechanical Engineer, NXP
NXP: What Did You Learn in Japan, India and Korea that Influenced You the Most?
Many things! For instance, in Japan I was exposed to the simple joys of Mingei, the traditional
folk art, which I think is as important as the Bauhaus movement. It’s about cherishing products
that we use every day. It’s for regular people and the fact that everyone deserves a well-made
product. You don’t have to be royalty to enjoy good products or good design.
NXP: How Did This Translate Into Your Work With NXP?
MH: People deserve well-designed products, which is one of the reasons NXP
customers come to us, they know that we design with the end-user in mind. Customers appreciate the
work that goes into this, the thought behind, and they notice straight away that we care about
their product and how their customers interact with it, which is why we put so much detail into the
NXP: What NXP Products Have You Designed or Worked On?
Rapid IoT prototyping kit was one of the first
projects that I worked on from the beginning. This went from sketch to final product, and even
though it’s a very small device, it was challenging. As with all the work I do for NXP, including
5G modems, my philosophy combines traditional and modern techniques, bridging art and technology
to meet the needs of the customer in the best possible way.
NXP: Describe Your Working Process.
HM: Depending on the scope of the project, I work from the beginning, day zero,
with the engineers on the product design as part of the Hardware Solutions team. We develop from
the chip to the board, so I also work with printed circuit boards (PCBs) and test-engineers. My work
includes the housing design, where the cables come in, that sort of thing.
NXP: So, When We Look at a PCB or a Housing and Ask “I Wonder Who Decides Where That Bit Goes,”
HM: Well, me and everyone who does what I do, yes. The result always depends on a
range of variables, the aesthetic needs of the product, the marketing side, the numbers of
connectors and antenna and so on. Like, if there is a need for a touch screen in the product, the
PCB will have to change shape and design to incorporate it, so things can change as the needs
NXP: How Well Do Industrial Design and Mechanical Engineering Mix?
HM: Both functions are similar in that they are about designing and creating
something that meets customer needs. My major was in industrial design, and in my work I find that
sometimes engineering can be a square, rigid discipline, so sometimes it is important to be able
to think outside the box to tackle certain problems. It’s fun to play with accuracy, to find
routes to solutions in unconventional ways, as long as the result meets the needs of the customer.
Herminio was recently interviewed by top EE journalist
Junko Yoshida for the ‘Artful Engineer’
For more information, please contact Herminio Menchaca.
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advancing the world by making it safer and more connected. We pursue our ambitions through
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