Managing director Johnnie Howman has an extensive career in PCB Design. After completing a Technician Apprenticeship at The British Aircraft Corporation in the late 1970’s Johnnie joined the drawing office as a PCB Draughtsman and was immediately trained on the then all new Computervison system laying out complex PCB’s for many military projects.
In 1981 Johnnie left BAe (as it had become) to join the design team at Rank Cintel. In those days CAD designers had to work shifts to maximise the use of the horrendously expensive CAD systems. Designing large PCB’s at Rank Cintel was a challenge as the CAD system couldn’t handle it, so the multichannel digital / analog / video PCB’s were separated into several designs and creatively joined together at photoplotting stage by the designers themselves.
Rank Cintel eventually updated their CAD tools to Mentor Boardstation and Johnnie attended the first ever Mentor training for this in the UK.
About a year later Johnnie went to join a small bureau, Nemesis associates, and soon became design manager for a 6 man strong design team using Cadstar and Visula systems.
Several years later Johnnie left Nemesis and pursued a number of design contracts, including various military sites and a year at Orbitel Mobile communications in the early days of mobile phone development.
In 1994 Johnnie met with the PADS distributors in the UK and between them set up Icarus Design. As well as designing for a vast range of customers the Icarus designers used their extensive knowledge of the PADS software to support the Technical support team.
Icarus are now an independent design bureau and hence are able to offer PCB design on a variety of CAD platforms, though we still prefer PADS!