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Futaba Corporation (双葉電子工業株式会社 Futabadenshikougyoukoujoukaisha?) (lit. Futaba Electronics Manufacturing Corporation) is a Japanese company that was founded on February 3, 1948 based on the production of vacuum tubes. As time passed, production and elemental techniques of the vacuum tube transformed into the manufacturing of vacuum fluorescent displays (VFDs), tool and die set components, radio control equipment and OLED displays.
The company is divided into 3 divisions:
- Machinery and Tooling (accounting for about 50% of sales). This division produces press and mold related equipment and components.
- Electronic Components (accounting for about 40% of sales). This division produces VFDs, OLED displays, Capactive Touchscreens and liquid desiccant known as OleDry-F.
- Electronics Systems (accounting for about 10% of sales). This division produces radio control equipement for both hobby and industrial uses.
Futaba became one of the first companies of its type to provide comprehensive radio control products, selection and service to hobbyists. Futaba systems and products were quickly accepted and used by serious competitors and casual enthusiasts alike. Futaba products are used in the air, on the water, underwater and on the ground for all types of RC models. Today, Futabas two main products lines are radio controls on the one hand and press die set components, mold base components and VFD (Vacuum Fluorescent Displays) modules. Futaba manufactures all components in-house, including tools and manufacturing facilities. The capital of the company is 22'558 mio. Yen and it has 5,263 employees (as of March 31st, 2010).
A Futaba RC unit is featured in the film Back to the Future when the character "Doc" used a remote control to drive the Delorean. Competing brands of radio control system brands include FrSky, Hitec, Spektrum RC (Horizon Hobby, LLC.), Airtronics (Sanwa), Japan Remote Control (JR) and Graupner. The brand is distributed in North America by Hobbico of Champaign, Illinois, USA, by Ripmax in the UK, by Robbe in Germany along with other distributors around the world.
The company is based in Chiba Prefecture, Japan
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