Orbel products are made in the USA with the capability to manufacture overseas if the need arises.

Hi-reliability components are parts designed for applications where products cannot be easily maintained or repaired, or replacement costs are extremely high. These products must meet extremely high-quality standards to ensure that they consistently perform. Examples of hi-reliability applications include satellite components, offshore drill sensors, and remote weather tracking systems.

EMI/RFI Shielding

EMI stands for electromagnetic interference, and RFI means radio frequency interference. Both types of interference can be potentially harmful to the performance of electronic equipment.

The primary types of EMI/RFI shielding are shielding directly on a printed circuit board, or around the seams of an enclosure. Depending on the application, a board level shield, finger-stock gasket, or fabric-over-foam gasket would be preferable.

Selecting the right type of shielding solution begins with analyzing many factors such as the environment, RFI frequencies of concern to the project, and mechanical requirements.

Tin-plated steel and nickel silver perform at a relatively similar rate, however the difference between the two is the frequency ranges that each performs better at. Tin-plated steel is preferable if trying to block low-frequency waves from creating interference, while nickel silver blocks mid- to high-frequency waves more effectively. Each will block EMI/RFI across different ranges but specialize within their specific ranges.

Heat-treated beryllium copper finger stock has heightened spring properties while also being strengthened through the heat-treating process. This allows for the component to secure a seam of an enclosure from EMI/RFI while also allowing for the enclosure to be opened and closed without risking damage to the shielding.

As a new product is finalized and ramp-up milestones are reached, the process of manufacturing will pivot to focusing on higher-quantity runs as the design and building processes are locked in. By gearing toward higher-quantity runs, production quality can remain consistent as the quantities increase. Inputs by the customer to reach the higher-quantity runs could be investments in custom tooling or progressive tools.

More information on designing a board level shield can be found in our BLS Design Guide. Our products are available on Digi-Key, or by contacting us.


Photo-etching is a controlled corrosion process geared toward yielding thin-gauge metal components that can exhibit a variety of details and geometries.

The basic process is explained in this video.

Many products can originate from the photo-etching process, including EMI/RFI shields and gaskets, contacts, spring clips, spacers, ground straps, and shims, as well as countless other items that can perform virtually any application.

Photo-etching is a relatively fast and cost-effective process. Because it is a corrosive process and not a stamping one, it induces no stress into the material. Photo-etching is ideal for thinner and lighter-gauge materials that might otherwise be damaged by hard-tooled blanking processes.

There are many examples of metals that lend themselves to photo-etching. Orbel’s specialties are beryllium copper, brass, nickel silver, copper, stainless steel, and nickel.

LDIs offer many advantages over photo-plotters. One key advantage is that a physical tool is replaced with a computer file, meaning that no deterioration or damage will impact the tool and the LDI will print the image the same every time. The other big advantage of an LDI is turnaround time. A traditional photo-plotted Mylar pattern needs about 24 hours to “settle” before it can be etched, whereas the patterns printed on an LDI are available immediately. Since there is no Mylar tool, the resultant image on the metal yields tighter final part tolerances.


AS9100 is a standardized quality management system for the aerospace industry. AS9100 fully incorporates the entirety of the current version of ISO 9001, while adding requirements relating to quality and safety. Aerospace manufacturers and suppliers around the world require AS9100 certification as a condition of doing business with them.

Nadcap (National Aerospace and Defense Contractors Accreditation Program) is an industry-managed approach to conformity assessment that brings together technical experts from prime contractors, suppliers, and representatives from government to establish requirements for approval of suppliers using a standardized approach. Nadcap accreditation is based solely on industry consensus.

ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations) is the U.S. government regulation that controls the manufacture, sale, and distribution of military and defense-related items. ITAR defines these items on the USML (United States Munitions List). Any company that designs and manufactures items on the USML must be ITAR-compliant.

CMMC (Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification) is a compliance mandate that requires U.S. Department of Defense contractors, subcontractors, and vendors to implement a set of regulations designed to protect Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI) on non-government networks.

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