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3D Solder Paste Inspection (SPI) systems have been a game-changer in reliable electronics, ensuring that complex PCBAs are fail-safe. A trailblazer for this innovative inspection is Koh Young. Recently celebrating 20 years of innovation and ten years since they introduced the concept of 3D measurement-based solder paste inspection, Altus, a leading distributor of capital equipment in the UK and Ireland, looks back at how 3D SPI has revolutionized the inspection industry.
Joe Booth, Altus CEO, said: “During the last ten years, we have seen an increase in manufacturers investing in 3D SPI systems. As technology has advanced and electronics have become more complex, the value of 3D measurement data has increased. The data not only helps to ensure high quality print processes and production results, but it also improves reliability, quality and performance of the PCBA. Investment in 3D SPI is no longer an optional extra but a necessity on any SMT line. ”
Since the Koh Young systems use light measurement, they produce the most accurate measurements of a PCBA; therefore it can be used to set the tightest tolerances. This results in better quality inspection, PCBA quality and a large reduction in false calls. Thanks to this intelligent automated technology which has the highest level of connectivity for all the inspection stations, overall automation capability is enhanced.
“Smart customers know that investing in an SPI often leads to the highest return on investment of any inspection or test process in production,” said Joe Booth. “They know this because it offers the earliest opportunity to ensure that solder paste performance is optimized and any failures are caught early before the cost of correcting those errors significantly increases.
“It is widely accepted that 70-80% of SMT production errors are linked to solder paste and, thus controlling that aspect of a line has always and will remain a priority. SPI is where Koh Young began full 3D metrology, and now, one of every two SPIs sold globally is a Koh Young platform. This market dominance is reflected in the UK and Ireland by the consistent sales performance over the years, and the saturation effect we see with many sites utilizing both Koh Young SPI and AOI on all their production lines. ”
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Companies have been collecting data in large volumes. Highly varied data from manufacturing operations comes in quickly that needs to be validated, and its value prioritized so that it can be turned into something useful — transformed from big data to smart data. The amount of data available has grown exponentially into big data. Twenty years ago, a PCB work order resulted in 100 data records, megabytes of data; today, it is 10 billion records, terabytes of data. The investment in collecting this data and storing it is high. However, without a way to analyze the data, without analytics, it will not result in ROI.
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Bill Horner, the founder of The Test Connection Inc. and a well-respected engineer, passed away on September 21, 2020. He was 81 years old.
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I-007e Micro Webinars recently released a free, on-demand series titled “Implementing Digital Twin Best Practices From Design Through Manufacturing” with Siemens’ Jay Gorajia. In Part 4, Gorajia discusses “Manufacturing Test Strategy Tools in the Hands of Designers.”