Circuit board glossary

Item: IMDS


IMDS stands for "International Material Data System". IMDS ( was developed by automobile manufacturers to collect the composition of the materials used in cars, parts, assemblies and systems to identify the  individual material components of each car or a sub-group (e.g. motor).

With the entry into force of the ELV Directive (06/21/2003), suppliers to the automotive industry are obliged to report their product ingredient data within IMDS for determining the rate of recovery in the disposal.

To be registered in IMDS:

  • PCBs
  • populated PCBs
  • components

ZVEI and the Automotive Industry have signed a Material Data for Assemblies - Cooperation on the declaration of material data:

The Electronic Components and Systems Division and PCB and Electronic Systems Division within the ZVEI - German Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers' Association have developed an efficient concept for the material data declaration of electronic components and printed circuit boards (PCB). The material data can be captured by forming cross-company product groups with typical values.

These material data sheets, so-called umbrella specifications, greatly simplify the declaration without any noticeable loss of accuracy. This concept has been successfully applied by the automotive industry since 2004.

In order to apply the Umbrella Specifications together with the IMDS-System the recommendation 019 "Printed Circuit Boards (PCB)" has been released by IMDS. This recommendation describes the method for the input of materials content of populated PCBs.

Excerpt from clause 5. Standard rules and guidelines for E/E (PCB components) of the IMDS Recommondation 019: "Reports on PCB components in IMDS, Umbrella Spec, IPC1752 or similar format are accepted, if agreed between the business partners."

Umbrella Specifications for IMDS, developed by ZVEI with PCB manufacturers:
A dynamic program makes it simple to calculate the substances contained in printed circuit boards of any size. The surface and number of layers are freely selectable. The standard technologies are stored in a database.

[April 2017]: Until further notice, the Umbrella Specifications are no longer supported by the ZVEI. For further information, please visit the ZVEI website.