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Award-Winning Product Development Engineer

An award-winning product development professional who has led teams of engineers and technicians in creating more than 22 highly profitable products that have generated in excess of $512 million for high-tech companies. An enthusiastic, creative engineer with seven patents to his name.

Expertise includes outstanding skills in mechanical engineering, analysis, problem solving, mobilizing, and leading cross-functional teams and electro-mechanical products design.


Zebra Technologies, Inc., Camarillo, California                                                                                   1997-2008

Senior Engineering Project Manager (1997-2000, Eltron, Inc.)

Led four product development teams in the creation and production of 11 thermal printers for the largest specialty label printing company serving the automotive, pharmaceutical, postal, medical, financial, retail distribution, warehousing, defense, transportation and shipping industries with annual sales of $900 million. These 11 printers accounted for more than $280 million sales.

  • Successfully led a cross-functional team using CAD/FEA in the design and production of a new 50% faster thermal transfer printer line with accessories that will replace a current line of printers, generating $33 million in annual revenues with a 40% expected gross margin.

  • Conceived, developed and filed a patent for a revolutionary MEMS-thermal print head that received accolades and significant company investment to further protect the patent’s technology.

  • Researched and gathered arguments that successfully protected the company from a patent infringement suit, which jeopardized a $60 million annual revenue stream.

  • Diagnosed and discovered a fix for a ribbon tension problem that removed a stop-ship for a thermal transfer printer currently generating $27 million in annual revenues.

  • Efficiently led to production a 300 dpi thermal transfer printer that has sold more than $30 million in revenues since its release and generates a 43% gross margin.

  • Skillfully led from conception to production a pistol-grip printer that integrates with a handheld computer-scanner and resulted in two Zebra patents.

  • Researched a new idea for a possible joint-venture concerning a smartcard payment terminal and found that there was not sufficient gross margin for the company to go forward with the project.

  • Co-instructed a well-received one-day internal course on MS Project, saving $15,000 on bringing in outside instructors.

  • Created the first portable printer design that became a standard for all current rental car return hand-held printers in the industry, which generates $45.6 million in annual revenues.

  • Successfully led and cost-reduced a compact and low-cost family of 8” direct thermal and thermal transfer printers and accessories from design to production. This line became a key factor in Zebra’s acquisition of Eltron in 2000.

  • Developed and prepared for the production of a new low-cost thermal printer line that resulted in four patents, generating $4.3 million in annual revenues with a 50% gross margin.

Datatape Incorporated, (a subsidiary of Bell & Howell, Inc. & Eastman Kodak, Inc.) Pasadena & Monrovia, California                                                                                                                                                         1983-1997

Project Staff Engineer (1992-1997)

Led a development team in projects related to data capture and storage for a manufacturer/contract service company specializing in defense, space and government data management with annual sales of up to $100 million.

  • Directly managed, developed and provided monthly customer presentations for a hostile environment, low-torque bearing-lubricant system, resulting in approved continuation of a $6 million per year recorder enhancement contract.

  • Researched, scheduled and budgeted a $7.2 million contract and product revenue-winning proposal for a rack-mount, 12-unit, recorder/reproducer system.

  • Turned around an almost non-existent relationship between Datatape and a German broadcast systems manufacturer, resulting in contracts worth $27 million.

  • Managed the adaptation of commercial recorder/reproducer systems to government-defense use, resulting in contracts totaling $11 million.

  • Using CAD, modeled and managed fabrication and assembly of an advanced technology test bed that resulted in winning a $1.7 million government research contract.

Senior Engineer (1987-1992)

One of three mechanical engineers that resolved development crises and brought to successful completion an 80-unit, $85.5 million airborne reconnaissance recorder product.

  • Created, developed and received government approval for laser-interferometer geometry measurements and recorder/reproducer tape guidance methods, insuring contract continuations and revenue streams for company products.

  • Applied formula calculations and finite element analysis to determine bending stress and enhanced design of a thin metal guide roller flexure, minimizing damage risk of critical defense/government data.

  • Performed rotary critical speed analyses and established Schenk balancing procedures and tolerances on a number of helical recorder projects, resulting in safety margins for mission data.

Engineer (1985-1987)

Developed a process for selecting crucial recorder design features using laser holography, resulting in the most reliable test for performance and durability of an aircraft/spacecraft tape recorder scanner. This process subsequently became a patent.

  • Designed and created drawings, selected adhesives, trained assembly production personnel, and proved worthiness of multiple systems for a rotary head unit used in 40 recorder/reproducers for flight test and spaceflight data missions, which provided $6 million in revenue.

  • Gave a successful rotary recorder technology presentation to machine shop personnel of a newly acquired company, which improved morale and facilitated its integration.

Associate Engineer (1983-1985)

Applied high-speed photography to diagnose cassette tape threading collision root causes in a top-priority government tape system that generated $44 million in revenue.

  • Tested multiple material samples and selected Beryllium Copper for rotary recorder shaft material, minimizing thermal risk to data in a system that brought in $49 million in revenue.

  • Co-conceived a precision-adjustable tape head support, resulting in a published invention disclosure.

  • Adapted a physical pendulum principle to measure tape reel inertia and designed compact recorder tension arm modules, preventing government data from damage.


California State University, Northridge, Northridge, California

Bachelor of Science, Mechanical Engineering, 1984

Other Courses: Agile MRP System, Web and ProE Engineering Clients, Design of Plastic Components, ProE Wildfire II and Wildfire III, ProE Surfaces, Integrated Product Development, Value Engineering, Statistical Process Control for Engineers, Total Quality Management, Process Action Teams, Tagucci Methods and Design of Experiments, ANSI Y14.5 Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing, Accountability Teams, Thermal Printing, Magnetics for Tape Recorders, Finite Element Analysis/ANSYS-Classic & Rasna-Mechanica, MS Excel, Priority Time Management, Instrument Ball Bearings, Friction & Wear of Materials, Design with Beryllium Copper and Reliability for Engineers


Six patents taken by Zebra Technologies related to the design of thermal printers, 2000-2005
One patent application awaiting approval for a MEMS thermal print head taken by Zebra Technologies, 2008
One patent for Datatape Incorporated for tape recorders, 1991
One published invention disclosure for Datatape Incorporated for tape recorders, 1984


Two Special Recognition Awards from Datatape Incorporated
Special Recognition Award from Zebra Technologies


American Society of Mechanical Engineering
Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society, former Vice President, California State University, Northridge Chapter

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Copyrighted © Peter K. Studner 1997-2006
Los Angeles - Burbank - Westlake Village - Irvine
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 241957, West Los Angeles, California 90024-9757
(310) 470-6688 - FAX (3