Monday, February 19, 2018
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Choosing the Right Optical Inspection System


Picking the right AOI system means a lot of work based on the many different criteria and options. Every AOI company will tell you there's no need to look further; their machine is as good as it gets.
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The Role of Pre-Heating in Electronics Rework


The Electronics industry, like any other, has been cyclical in its evolution. Through-hole, surface mount, single-sided, multi- layer, complexity and density have all changed and evolved and then changed again. Just as one methodology and approach seems to take root, the next big thing ...
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Being Active with Passives


It looks like a sleepy little town in Western New York State's Allegeny Mountains, but it's home to an electronics manufacturing company whose products are in great demand worldwide — even shipping components to China (see U.S. Tech Oct. 2010: "Not a Foreign Concept, Gowanda ...
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Reclaiming Costly Components Without Losing Quality


Today's demanding rework applications require reliable solutions that directly address the specific challenges involved with each type of rework process. Having to scrap boards and components can greatly impact the profitability of any job and is avoided whenever possible. Therefore ...
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Stencil Printing Challenges for Small Devices


The very small form factor of today's QFNs (quad flatpack, no leads), DFNs (dual flatpack, no leads), and µBGAs allows for smaller packages, and thus smaller electronic devices with more overall functionality, especially in the newer mobile devices. QFNs stand out because they provide  better grounding and better heat sink thermal properties compared to other SMT packages. Most QFNs have a metal pad on the underside for grounding and heat conduction. DFNs have a...

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An Integrated Approach to Device Programming


Human error. It's always lurking there in the shadows, ready to reach in when a library file for a programmable device is selected. Pick the wrong one, and you may end up with a mistake that can cost the company millions of dollars. It has happened, and sadly not just once or twice ...
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PCBA Bonepiles: The Neglected Green Revenue Stream Rehabilitated


Bonepiles. Everybody's got them. They're collections of PCB assemblies that are defective and can't be rescued. In today's fast-paced, production-oriented, revenue-driven environment, when an assembled board is deemed unrepairable, it frequently is written off and placed into a "bonepile ...
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Are Your Materials Really Halogen-Free?


Though there is no official, government-mandated requirement forcing the production of halogen-free products and, therefore, the use of halogen-free materials, the electronics industry has arguably moved in that direction. This industry-sponsored effort is being driven primarily by ...
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Counterfeit Components Still Endangering our Troops


Our all-volunteer military is in daily mortal danger — not necessarily from terrorists, roadside bombs or combat — but from trusted electronic equipment that may suddenly fail for no discernible reason. Yet we know the probable reason: counterfeit parts that somehow had made their ...
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Testing to Detect Counterfeit Components


In recent years counterfeit parts have become an increasing problem in every industry that uses electronic components. Compounding these problems, it is increasingly difficult to know the true source of the purchased components. Because of both the quality and sophistication of many ...
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Supply Chain: Not a Game of Perfect


The famed sports psychologist/author Dr. Bob Rotella wrote the book, "Golf Is Not a Game of Perfect." He was right. It's safe to say that golfers don't hit a perfect shot every time they swing the club, but they aim to play the best round possible as measured by their score (the lower ...
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Building a More Secure Supply Chain Strategy


Manufacturers that depend on electronic components are finding it difficult to acquire some of the quality parts they need in a timely, reliable manner. Changes in the business models of franchise distributors and an influx of counterfeit and substandard parts are creating new challenges ...
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Counterfeits: Will the Bad Guy Stand Up?


It was reported in a recent 60 Minutes program that the total commerce worldwide in counterfeit products has grown to $600 billion USD. As recently as 2005 it was estimated at $200 billion, so recent efforts to stop it have obviously failed. Counterfeit products are entering every product ...
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Mezalok: Fast, Rugged, MIL-Environment Connector


The need for embedded electronic systems in rugged platforms has been continually increasing and driving more stringent requirements for board-to-board connectivity. At VITA Standards Organization meetings, customers have consistently voiced a need for an improved stacking connector ...
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Japan's Disaster and Passive Components


The situation in Japan, the world's third largest economy behind the US and China, has worldwide consequences. Toyota, for example, announced that it will be forced to shut down all of its North American factories, affecting some 25,000 workers, because of parts shortages resulting ...
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Disaster in Japan: The Supply Chain Takes a Hit


Earthquakes, tsunamis, broken nuclear power plants and a devastated nation are not usually factors in making production plans, but a seriously disrupted supply chain may now affect all aspects of manufacturing while Japan claws its way out of its horrendous calamities.
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Understanding Shielded Cable


Industrial areas such as the factory floor are typically electrically noisy environments. Electrical noise, either radiated or conducted as electromagnetic interference (EMI), can seriously disrupt the proper operation of other equipment. Insulation protects a cable mechanically from ...
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Increased Accuracy and Speed with Piezo Dispensing


As today's mobile devices continue to get smaller and thinner, the amount of space available for securing components and subassemblies is steadily decreasing. In response, many

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Combating the Counterfeit Component Epidemic


If you're involved with electrical manufacturing and the procurement, planning, or processing of board-level components, you already know what a complex, crazy, and intense world this can be.
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A User's Guide to BGA Reballing


Reballing — it's a simple idea — just put those little spheres back on component pads. But the reality is that it can be very simple process or as annoying as keeping your Buffalo, NY driveway snow-free throughout December — an impossible task.
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