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A test vehicle and qualification test for proving out process changes.

IPC J-STDF-001G states, “Unless otherwise specified by the User, the Manufacturer shall [N1D2D3] qualify soldering and/or cleaning processes that result in acceptable levels of flux and other residues.  Objective evidence shall [N1D2D3] be available for review.”1 (Ed.: N1D2D3 means no requirement has been established for Class 1, and the condition is a defect in Classes 2 and 3.)

In a qualified manufacturing process (QMP), manufacturing materials and processes used to produce electronics hardware are benchmarked and validated against electrical performance in hot/humid conditions.2 Characterizing chemical residues that exist on a manufactured assembly, and assessing the impact of those residues on electrical performance, has much to do with the end-use environment in which the hardware will operate. The other important factor is the circuit density and component types. Leadless and bottom-terminated components are more susceptible to residue challenges due to low standoff gaps, tight pitch, high solder mass, and blocked outgassing channels.

Here, we assess the impact of process residues on electrical performance to qualify electronics hardware and the manufacturing process. The qualification methodology will determine the acceptability of the residue condition at the point of the manufacturing process just prior to the application of conformal coating.

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The steps involved in manual and automated contamination removal.

Printed circuit boards are subjected to many harsh environmental conditions, including extreme temperatures, strong chemicals, corrosive salts, dust and moisture. Encapsulating them with a protective conformal coating makes sense. Conformal coatings keep harmful elements from touching delicate components and degrading performance of the boards. However, for optimum PCB longevity, functionality and reliability, it is imperative boards are perfectly clean and dry before conformal coating.

PCB contamination comes from many sources: transport, handling, storage and manufacturing. The most common examples of PCB contamination are fingerprint oils and salts, flux residue, tape or other adhesive residue, solder balls, and even some inks or chip bonder.

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New 3-D technologies with robust interconnects and thermal solutions are on the way.

Ed.: This is the fifth of an occasional series by the authors of the 2019 iNEMI Roadmap. This information is excerpted from the roadmap, available from iNEMI (inemi.org/2019-roadmap-overview).

Aerospace and defense (A&D) products face several challenges unique to this particular market segment, including the extreme environments in which they operate, need for security, desire for reworkability, long duration storage requirements and the functional lifetime over which the products are expected to perform and be supported.

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The merits of using flying probe for functional test and FAI.

I am often asked by prospective customers if there is a spreadsheet analysis tool to calculate ROI for comparing the cost to purchase and use a flying probe tester versus test fixturing for testing assembled PCBAs. Custom bed-of-nails test fixturing is expensive and not cost-effective in a high-mix environment. In addition to fixture cost and the time/cost to get tests ready for production, often design-for-test considerations do not provide access for effective ICT coverage with a fixed-pin test solution. Flying probe testers aren’t cheap either, however, and manufacturers want to compare these two very different approaches before making a decision.

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New 3-D technologies with robust interconnects and thermal solutions are on the way.

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In the wake of pandemics and travel bans, visitors still turned out for the annual exhibition.

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