At NXP, we aspire to advance society through our technology and innovation. Together we strive to
make the world a bit safer and more sustainable. These are lofty ideals, but sometimes in our
working lives, they seem remote and abstract, until suddenly something happens that drives home
with stark clarity the significant impact we have on people’s lives.
I work at NXP as Vice President of Package Innovation. I live in Austin and experienced
firsthand just how much NXP’s efforts contribute to protecting those most precious to us.
Glenn G. Daves.
A Troublesome Call
Sometime ago, we got one of those calls that every parent dreads. It was my daughter, Elizabeth,
she had been in a car accident. Everyone was fine, but the car was not drivable. So, could we come
pick her up? Concerned, my wife, Carole, and I immediately dropped our emails and meetings and
rushed out the door to the site of the accident, about ten minutes from our home.
The Accident Site
When we got there, traffic was backed up and police cars and a fire truck were on the scene, their
lights flashing. And there was my car, a 2011 Ford Taurus, in the middle of the intersection. It
was a gut-wrenching sight, the windshield was cracked, the front end of the car completely crushed
and one of the front tires had come off its rim. “Not drivable” was an understatement.
High Running Emotions
We found our daughter sitting in the bed of a pickup truck – a kind passerby had stopped to help
and let her sit there. To our relief, she seemed fine except for a minor cut on her wrist and
high-running emotions. Her friend, who was in the passenger seat, was also fine. The other car
involved (whose driver was also uninjured) had turned suddenly in front of my daughter, and she
collided with it before there was time to react.
Surveying the Wreck
Once I was sure everyone was okay, I went to inspect my car more carefully. Interestingly, the
windshield had not been cracked by the impact of the collision, but rather by the force of the
passenger-side front airbag deploying. Both front airbags had inflated, but otherwise, the
passenger compartment was completely intact.
Safety by Design
Surveying the wreck of my car and contemplating what could’ve happened to my daughter got me
thinking: some skilled engineers at Ford designed a passenger cabin that was capable of
withstanding this kind of bone-crunching impact. And, some equally capable engineers at a Tier 1
automotive supplier developed a passenger restraint system—seat belts, airbags and seat belt
pre-tensioners—that was able to respond in milliseconds to protect the passengers.
And, even closer to my heart and mind, some of my dedicated, specialized engineering colleagues at
that, even ten years into their lifespan and after many on-off cycles, functioned flawlessly to
sense this impact, make the correct decision regarding intensity and deploy the airbags. Staring
at my car in the middle of the road, I was staring at a vivid reminder that NXP people—from
engineering to manufacturing to everyone else— literally contribute to protecting people and
Ever-Better Quality Performance
I also want to make a shout out to the Package Innovation team in particular: some of them worked
on the packages for those devices. They designed the packages, they selected the mold compound,
they made sure the wire bond inter-metallics were strong and robust against manufacturing
variation, they modeled the thermal performance, they got the whole product through development
and into production. They even solved some customer quality complaint (CQC) issues on these parts
along the way, driving for ever-better quality performance.
Gratitude and Relief
Because of our combined efforts, there are two young women today who, rather than experiencing a
tragedy, instead had a bad afternoon and now have a story to tell. There are countless stories
like theirs, as well as countless parents out there, thankful that the call did not bear worse
news. Thinking of NXP’s fine work and seeing how it contributed to protecting my daughter, I felt
a great sense of gratitude and relief.
To learn more about Quality, please visit
The We Are NXP program embodies the people, spirit and values of NXP, which is committed to
advancing the world by making it safer and more connected. We pursue our ambitions through
technological innovations designed to enhance the quality of life of our employees, our
communities and the world at large, all the while ensuring sustainability and minimizing our
impact on the environment. Read more