December 2006 Issue Print E-mail
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Thursday, 30 November 2006 19:00

December 2006 cover


  • Nickel Stencils
    Improvements in Pb-free Stencils
    When screen printing with Pb-free solder pastes, stencils made from pure nickel or a nickel alloy help to achieve paste transfer efficiency comparable to the levels achieved using SnPb pastes with stainless steel laser-cut stencils. Combined with the efficiencies of a framemounted interchangeable foil stencil system, nickel is the optimal medium for process repeatability and productivity.
    Clive Ashmore and Michael Zahn

  • Placement Software
    New Tools for High-Mix Manufacturers
    Though the speed and accuracy of modern component placement systems still factor greatly in equipment evaluation, software is emerging as a differentiator. Here, a major EMS company discusses how use of new software helped it cut NPI setup by 1.5 to 2 times.
    David Garfield and Steve Bowen

  • Cover Story
    Key Issues in Supporting Customers Not Transitioning To Pb-Free
    Many OEMs need to sustain leaded products for reasons of cost or reliability. This article looks at challenges associated with products that are not transitioning to Pb-free and suggests considerations for both the EMS company and the OEM.
    Curt Williams

  • Case Study
    Finding Hidden Placement Problems
    High-mix, low volume EMS companies spend large amounts of time in machine setup and changeover. Using a special technology that measures machine accuracy, one EMS provider was able to improve its placement machine accuracy.
    Kary Voegele

  • DfM Trends
    Practical Steps to Reduce Total Cost of Ownership
    From R&D to boxbuild, the telecom equipment supply chain is highly complex. Yet many OEMs fail to bring their EMS providers into the process until a new product is ready for volume production. Here’s how to fix that.
    Petra Ebner





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On the cover: How to accomodate OEMs that are sticking with lead solder. (Photo by Gino Santa Maria, 2006)

Last Updated on Tuesday, 07 February 2012 09:44


Eastern-US: China’s New Competitor?

Parity emerges among EMS Factories from Asia, Mexico and the US.

For the first time in years we see parity in the Eastern US among EMS factories from Asia, Mexico and the US. This EMS market condition will permit American OEMs (the EMS industry refers to OEMs as customers) to have more EMS pathways to choose from. Now more than ever, such EMS assignments will require deeper investigation relating to the OEMs’ evaluation of manufacturing strategies.

The Human Touch

For those who count on the electronics industry for big feats, it’s been a remarkable couple of years.



Advances in Concentration Monitoring and Closed-Loop Control

Contaminated bath water skews refractive index results. New technology can accurately measure aqueous cleaning agent concentration.

Circuits Disassembly: Materials Characterization and Failure Analysis

A systematic approach to nonconventional methods of encapsulant removal.





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