We are very excited to have received a 2017 SMT China Vision Award in the category of Hand Soldering for the CV-5200 Connection Validation™ Soldering Station. The award was presented to the company on April 25, 2017 at the Shanghai World Expo Exhibition & Convention Center during NEPCON China. This is the second award that the company has received for Connection Validation since its introduction in early 2017.
Metcal will be presenting two white papers at IPC APEX 2017 in San Diego this February 14-16. Take a look at a summary of what our engineers will be presenting:
When: Wednesday, Feb. 15th, 1:30 -3:00 PM
What: Panel: S17: Rework I
Rework Challenges for Leading Edge Components BGA, QFN and LED in Today’s Fast Moving Industry
(see also below: Risk Mitigation in Hand Soldering)
Presented by Paul Wood, Metcal Advanced Product Applications Manager
The electronics assembly industry continues to face the challenges associated with BGA, QFN, and LED packages. The demand for more performance by consumers drives change, which results in greater component density. Component density on printed circuit boards continues to decrease with a corresponding increase in component complexity and reduction in pitches. Good examples of these industrial trends are smart phones, tablets and wearables.
That’s why Contactless Solder Cleaning is rapidly replacing manual cleaning in increasingly more rework applications.
The PCB rework process has long consisted of three steps:
- Removal of the inoperative component.
- Cleaning of residual solder from the ball grid assembly (BGA) pads which held the inoperative component in place.
- Replacement with a new component to create a viable PCB.
The first and third steps—removal and replacement—have long been automated, and are completed on rework machines with operator assistance. Cleaning, the middle step—and arguably, the most sensitive and vital step when it comes to reclaiming a damaged board—is often done completely manually by a skilled and experienced technician. The cleaning is performed with hand tools, usually a wicking braid and a soldering iron, using standard or specialized tips. The effectiveness of the operation is highly dependent on the skills of the individual operator. With the emphasis often placed on work throughput, board damage is quite common.
One common scenario in manual cleaning is the destruction of a pad due to sticking, when the heat of the soldering iron momentarily dissipates through the board, causing the delicate pad to stick to the wick and be chipped or lifted off the board entirely when the operator pulls the tool back. Overwhelming, destruction to a pad results in a wasted, scrap board.
Contactless solder cleaning is rapidly replacing manual cleaning in more and more PCB rework applications
Today's manufacturers of printed circuit boards (PCBs) are strongly quality driven, but even among those operations that are able to drive yields near or even above 99%, the huge volumes associated with applications such as smartphones and tablets could still leave them with thousands of boards per week that come off the assembly line damaged and in need of rework.
Since the cost of these PCBs can be well over US$200 each, most manufacturers and OEMs consider it vital to develop an effective process for working to reclaim these boards and minimize scrap PCBs—and the resulting losses—in their operations.
(Off center solder ball in the corners)
In case you missed our booth at the SMTA International trade show in Chicago last week, we didn’t want you to miss our Sr. Application guru, Paul Wood’s interview with I-Connect007 regarding Metcal’s new PCB contactless desoldering and cleaning product.
Metcal’s award-winning Scarab Cleaning System is a cost effective solution to PCB cleaning challenges faced by today’s rework manufacturers. The standalone product can easily be added to a current rework system, enabling a single operator to manage a cleaning and rework assembly line, reducing labor costs and increasing throughput.
Click on the video for Paul's interview!