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Rochester Institute of Technology recently received new electronics assembly equipment for its Center for Electronics and Manufacturing Assembly (CEMA). The university installed a DEK NeoHorizen printing machine, used by electronics manufacturers to precisely place transistors onto electronic circuit boards.
The equipment will be used for teaching, faculty research and corporate R&D through an expanded partnership between RIT and ASM Assembly Systems. As part of the partnership, the two organizations are advancing production processes and operations to meet the demands of the evolving manufacturing industry. Research by CEMA and ASM, the international electronics manufacturing organization, is underway into advancing this critical step in assembling the mechanical components of devices such as smart phones.
“ASM is interested in is the adoption of very small components in advanced products. These devices have incredibly small transistors (resistors and capacitors) that are hard to see with the naked eye, therefore it requires advanced equipment to be able to assemble with them,” said Martin Anselm, director of CEMA. “This print machine is one used in industry today, and it allows for more control and for more advanced products to be manufactured.”
Anselm, who is also a faculty-researcher in RIT’s College of Engineering Technology, has been working with the company on projects relating to the increase in miniaturized components being added to circuit boards and the need for greater battery storage capacity.
“One way cell phones increase their battery life is to make more space for the battery. The more we can put electronics into a smaller factor, the more internal volume we have for the battery. The smaller we make the circuit board, the more capability the product has,” he said, referring to the dense space between the circuitry.
CEMA was established at RIT in 1995 and provides workforce training, development, prototype testing and research for the electronics manufacturing and packaging industry. Its corporate partners represent companies locally and nationally.
In 2017, RIT expanded its long-time collaboration with ASM, increasing CEMA’s capabilities in electronic manufacturing. The new equipment, valued at nearly $250,000, will further RIT’s overall contributions to AIM Photonics, specifically in the area of next-generation electronics devices and packaging, positioning both organizations to contribute to the growing industry.