Technical Library | 2020-12-02 20:36:54.0
Industry 4.0 is a topic of much discussion within the electronics manufacturing industry. Manufacturers and vendors are trying to come to terms with what that means. In the most simplistic of terms, Industry 4.0 is a trend toward automation and data exchange within the manufacturing process. This basically requires connectivity and communication from machine to machine within the manufacturing line. The challenge is to collect data from each of the systems within the line and make that data available to the rest of the machines. Without test and inspection, there is no Industry 4.0. The whole purpose of test and inspection is to collect actionable data that may be used to reduce defects and maximize efficiency within the manufacturing line. The goal is to minimize scrap and get a really good handle on those process parameters that need to be put in place to manufacture products the right way the first time. For maximum efficiency, three inspection systems are required within the production line. These are solder paste inspection (SPI) post-solder deposition, automated optical inspection (AOI) post-placement, and AOI post-reflow. This requires a substantial investment; however, the combination of all three inspection machines is really the only true way to provide feedback for each stage of the manufacturing process.
Technical Library | 2020-11-04 17:49:45.0
OEMs and CMs designing and building electronic assemblies for high reliability applications are typically faced with a decision to clean or not to clean the assembly. If ionic residues remain on the substrate surface, potential failure mechanisms, including dendritic growth by electrochemical migration reaction and leakage current, may result. These failures have been well documented. If a decision to clean substrates is made, there are numerous cleaning process options available. For defluxing applications, the most common systems are spray-in-air, employing either batch or inline cleaning equipment and an engineered aqueous based cleaning agent. Regardless of the type of cleaning process adopted, effective cleaning of post solder residue requires chemical, thermal and mechanical energies. The chemical energy is derived from the engineered cleaning agent; the thermal energy from the increased temperature of the cleaning agent, and the mechanical energy from the pump system employed within the cleaning equipment. The pump system, which includes spray pressure, spray bar configuration and nozzle selection, is optimized for the specific process to create an efficient cleaning system. As board density has increased and component standoff heights have decreased, cleaning processes are steadily challenged. Over time, cleaning agent formulations have advanced to match new solder paste developments, spray system configurations have improved, and wash temperatures (thermal energy) have been limited to a maximum of 160ºF. In most cases, this is due to thermal limitations of the materials used to build the polymer-based cleaning equipment. Building equipment out of stainless steel is an option, but one that may be cost prohibitive. Given the maximum allowable wash temperature, difficult cleaning applications are met by increasing the wash exposure time; including reducing the conveyor speed of inline cleaners or extending wash time in batch cleaners. Although this yields effective cleaning results, process productivity may be compromised. However, high temperature resistant polymer materials, capable of withstanding a 180°F wash temperature, are now available and can be used in cleaning equipment builds. For this study, the authors explored the potential for increasing cleaning process efficiency as a result of an increase in thermal energy due to the use of higher wash temperature. The cleaning equipment selected was an inline cleaner built with high temperature resistant polymer material. For the analysis, standard substrates were used. These were populated with numerous low standoff chip cap components and soldered with both no-clean tin-lead and lead-free solder pastes. Two aqueous based cleaning agents were selected, and multiple wash temperatures and wash exposure times were evaluated. Cleanliness assessments were made through visual analysis of under-component inspection, as well as localized extraction and Ion Chromatography in accordance with current IPC standards.
Technical Library | 2012-11-21 18:57:58.0
The continuing evolution toward advanced miniature packaging has led to ever increasing PCB density and complexity. As the manufacturing process becomes progressively more complicated, there is an ever increasing probability for defects to occur on finished PCB assemblies. For years the Automated Optical Inspection (AOI) industry has relied solely upon two-dimensional (2D) inspection principles to test the quality of workmanship on electronic assemblies. While advancements in conventional 2D optical inspection have made this technology suitable for detecting such defects as missing components, wrong components, proper component orientation, insufficient solder, and solder bridges; there is an inherent limitation in the ability to inspect for co-planarity of ultra-miniature chips, leaded device, BGA and LED packages.
Technical Library | 2009-09-18 14:42:37.0
In recent years, various studies have been issued on cleaning under low standoff components; most however, with incomplete information. It is essential to revisit and describe the latest challenges in the market, identifying obvious gaps in available information. Such information is crucial for potential and existing users to fully address the cleanliness levels under their respective components. With the emergence of lead-free soldering and even smaller components, new challenges have arisen including cleaning in gaps of less than 1-mil.
Technical Library | 2009-07-01 09:24:25.0
During the last 5 years, the processes to remove flux residues especially for lead-free and challenging geometries have demonstrated new cleaning obstacles which have to be overcome.i A new methodology has been recently developed to further increase the propensity for successful cleaning.ii At the core of this method is the thermal identification of the residue matrix. Thermal energy changes the physical state, i.e. transitions between liquid, solid and gas phases. By taking advantage of such specific information during phase transitions, the cleaning process can be tailored to such settings, which in turn increases the cleaning success significantly.
Technical Library | 2020-11-04 17:57:41.0
Residues present on circuit boards can cause leakage currents if not controlled and monitored. How "Clean is Clean" is neither easy nor cheap to determine. Most OEMs use analytical methods to assess the risk of harmful residues. The levels that can be associated with clean or dirty are typically determined based on the exposed environment where the part will be deployed. What is acceptably clean for one segment of the industry may be unacceptable for more demanding segments. As circuit assemblies increase in density, understanding cleanliness data becomes more challenging. The risk of premature failure or improper function is typically site specific. The problem is that most do not know how to measure or define cleanliness nor can they recognize process problems related to residues. A new site specific method has been designed to run performance qualifications on boards built with specific soldering materials, reflow settings and cleaning methods. High impedance measurements are performed on break off coupons designed with components geometries used to build the assembly. The test method provides a gauge of potential contamination sources coming from the assembly process that can contribute to electrochemical migration.
Technical Library | 2019-08-14 22:20:55.0
Cleanliness is a product of design, including component density, standoff height and the cleaning equipment’s ability to deliver the cleaning agent to the source of residue. The presence of manufacturing process soil, such as flux residue, incompletely activated flux, incompletely cured solder masks, debris from handling and processing fixtures, and incomplete removal of cleaning fluids can hinder the functional lifetime of the product. Contaminates trapped under a component are more problematic to failure. Advanced test methods are needed to obtain "objective evidence" for removing flux residues under leadless components.Cleaning process performance is a function of cleaning capacity and defined cleanliness. Cleaning performance can be influenced by the PCB design, cleaning material, cleaning machine, reflow conditions and a wide range of process parameters.This research project is designed to study visual flux residues trapped under the bottom termination of leadless components. This paper will research a non-destructive visual method that can be used to study the cleanability of solder pastes, cleaning material effectiveness for the soil, cleaning machine effectiveness and process parameters needed to render a clean part.
Technical Library | 2017-07-27 16:51:57.0
Reliability Expectations of Highly Dense Electronic Assemblies is commonly validated using Ion Chromatography and Surface Insulation Resistance. Surface Insulation Resistance tests resistance drops on both cleaned and non-cleaned circuit assemblies. It is well documented in the literature that SIR detects ionic residue and the potential of this residue to cause leakage currents in the presence of humidity and bias. Residues under leadless components are hard to inspect for and to ensure flux residue is totally removed. The question many assemblers consider is the risk of residues that may still be present under the body of components.
Technical Library | 2019-09-23 09:35:00.0
Failure analysis (FA), by its very nature, is needed only when things goawry. Before any testing is performed on the sample, a decision mustbe made as to whether or not the sample is allowed to be destroyedin the process of testing. Non-destructive testing can allow for re-use of the assembly since the functionality is not altered, but there still remains the possibility that inadvertent damage can occur through the course of the analysis. If non-destructive testing is preferred, then the following types of analysis can be performed. The testing can be divided into four categories: visual, X-ray (X-ray imaging and X-ray fluorescence), cleanliness (resistivity of solvent extract, ion chromatography, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy), and mechanical (non-destructive wire bond pull).
Technical Library | 2019-06-11 09:36:13.0
An experiment was recently performed ACI Technologies for a customer that was interested in comparing the wetting of lead-free solders with varying temperature profiles and atmospheric conditions. In order to deliver an objective measurement of solder wetting (in addition to subjective inspection analysis), a simple wetting indicator pattern was added to the solder stencil in an area on the test vehicle that had exposed and unused copper.