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The Buy American Act was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Hoover in 1933. The law requires the federal government to purchase from U.S. manufacturers under a set of specific guidelines codified in 41 U.S.C. §§ 8301-8305. The basis of the law is that products must meet the following requirements:

(1) The end-product must be manufactured in the United States, and

(2) more than 50 percent of the cost of all the component parts must also be manufactured in the United States.

A product can be considered a “domestic end product” under the Buy American Act if it meets this two-part test.

More recently, the Trump and Biden administrations have attempted to strengthen this law through the use of Executive Orders, with the Trump EO significantly increasing the percentage of iron and steel from >50% to >95%, and the Biden order attempting to eliminate some of the loopholes and exceptions by which the government circumvents the law.

While it is still unclear how much the most recent Executive Order will impact government purchasing, contractors and manufacturers, it is clear that special attention should be paid to ensuring goods sold to the U.S. government are in-fact “Made in the USA.”

Well before the most recent Executive Order was passed, Applied Physical Electronics has focused on our commitment to being a “Made in the USA” manufacturer in the following ways:

  • Manufacturing components at our ISO-9001:2015 CNC machine shop located in Spicewood, TX USA.
  • Purchasing raw material such as brass, aluminum, and plastic from U.S. manufacturers.
  • Purchasing ancillary components for our pulsed power systems from U.S. manufacturers.

APELC’s dedication to this is rooted both in a belief in doing our best to support the U.S. economy, and in the following practical considerations:

  • We listened to our machinists when they told us that materials sourced in the USA are of a higher quality, last longer, and machine better. i.e. – the quality-control can be ensured from these suppliers, which is not always the case with foreign suppliers.
  • When we manufacture things ourselves, we can not only control the quality, but adapt quickly to design changes and customer input.
  • By partnering with U.S. component suppliers, we can easily visit with them in-person and remotely to ensure their products meet our customer needs and integrate well with our systems.

Beyond this commitment to U.S. made goods, APELC’s manufacturing and purchasing process also helps to lessen the burden on government purchasing agents by ensuring easily demonstrable compliance with the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR), and by giving the option to buy from a U.S.-based small business.

While APELC is a small business comprised of just over 20 people, we are more than capable of ensuring the very best in quality management with our ISO-9001:2015 compliance, and in high throughput manufacturing with recent advances in our machine shop. To learn more, see the past two blog entries:

  1. Did you know APELC is 90012015 Certified? 
  2. Enhanced Manufacturing Capabilities Allows for Higher Volume and Shorter Lead Times 

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