Altus Offers Transparency on 3D Optical Measurement


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The increasing complexity of electronic devices, coupled with the growing demand for higher quality control and process improvement mechanisms, is escalating the importance to identify any potential problems quickly during the manufacturing process. Key to this is the use of sophisticated inspection equipment. Global leaders in both AOI and SPI technology, Koh Young, has further enhanced their offering with an added development to Neptune T, the industry’s first 3D light measurement instrument for transparent materials. Altus, a leading distributor of capital equipment in the UK and Ireland, is ready to present the innovative system to their customers.

Neptune T from Koh Young is a pioneering system that cleverly uses non-destructive 3D inspection technology to examine the thickness of transparent and semi-transparent materials like coatings, underfill and epoxy used on a printed circuit board (PCB). This ensures the conformal coating used to protect the delicate circuitry is applied correctly and will ensure the device operates as it should.

Expanding on the capabilities of Neptune T, Koh Young has advanced the system with the next phase in its development. This is to inspect batch and inline conformal coating inspection systems using data aggregation and data-driven process.

Joe Booth, Altus’ Director of Business Development and Marketing says, “The inspection of transparent materials like conformal coating is extremely important to ensure quality control and ultimately guarantees that the device will function correctly in its given climate. Think of the impact 3D measurement had on AOI and SPI in comparison to 2D systems. Well the Neptune brings 3D inspection to coating. Given how much critical electronics is manufactured in the UK, this product promises to be a game changer for process improvement and monitoring in our markets.

“The developments that have been made will help to bring data-based decision making that has been so successful in AOI and SPI into a traditionally subjective process, to the conformal coating process.

“Inspection systems used in electronics manufacture could traditionally detect the presence of coating, however they were unable to inspect the thickness. This missing element meant some PCBs went through the production line without the correct protective layer.

“This advancement will be a huge quality improvement across material dispensing and help in the manufacture of critical electronics. We are looking forward to presenting the updated Neptune T to our customers. Together with Koh Young we are ready to run sample testing to prove concept and expectation on batch and inline systems, so it is ready for market before the end of the year.”

Neptune T uses Koh Young’s LIFT technology, a laser interferometry for fluid tomography. A multi-layer fluidic structure image is produced to ensure the material is applied in the correct thickness, therefore guaranteeing protection of the PCB.

This inspection technology is suitable for a wide number of applications including adhesives, LED lens and phosphor and is available to industries like automotive, aerospace and lighting that requires quality 3D inspection for critical electronic assemblies.

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