SMT Solver: How Standards Impact You and Your Company

Standardization is one of the key issues in promoting any new technology, but it is almost mandatory for SMT because of the need for automation to promote consistency in quality. Standards make the market grow faster than it would without them. A good standard benefits both users and suppliers. For example, if the package size tolerances are tightly controlled (within the requirement of the standard), the user can properly design the land pattern and use the same design for all suppliers of that package. The supplier also benefits because as long as the packages meet the standard, they can meet the needs of all their customers.

Use of standards also sets the quality expectations for both the suppliers and users. An industry standard creates a win-win situation for everyone. Following standards ensures that suppliers and OEMs are on the same page to ensure superior quality and reliability and lower cost.

However, standards have a couple of downsides. They take time to develop and release because there are established guidelines and rules, which are critical for their acceptance and need to be followed. They are also not good for lawyers because they reduce conflicts and legal disputes; on second thought, this is an upside.

Standard vs. Specification

A standard is not the same as a specification. Standards are set by industry organizations, such as IPC and EIA, in their areas of interest to their industry in general and their members in particular. Specifications, on the other hand, are established by users to meet their own unique requirements. However, if a particular company wishes to use a given standard as their specification, they certainly can do that, and many just do that. 

To read this entire column, which appeared in the September 2019 issue of SMT007 Magazine, click here.

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2019

SMT Solver: How Standards Impact You and Your Company

11-06-2019

Standardization is one of the key issues in promoting any new technology, but it is almost mandatory for SMT because of the need for automation to promote consistency in quality. Standards make the market grow faster than it would without them. A good standard benefits both users and suppliers. For example, if the package size tolerances are tightly controlled (within the requirement of the standard), the user can properly design the land pattern and use the same design for all suppliers of that package.

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SMT Solver: Would You Prefer Shorts or Opens in Your Products?

07-29-2019

Would you prefer shorts or opens in your products? Of course, neither. But what if you do have to choose? Ray Prasad says he would choose a more desirable defect, if there is such a thing. But what is a desirable defect? A defect that would never escape inspection and test and would be caught before shipping the product to the customer. Read on why.

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SMT Solver: Benchmarking Defect Levels in Your Products

06-17-2019

In this column, Ray Prasad discusses why zero defects may be a desirable goal but not a realistic one. He also shares some industry data as proof, which you can also use to benchmark defect levels in your products. Finally, he also addresses the choices when selecting components that have a big impact on the level of defects you should expect.

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SMT Solver: Assemblers Can Help Customers Reduce Cost, Improve Reliability

05-08-2019

It is commonly assumed that the level of defects is primarily dependent on how the assemblers control their manufacturing processes. This sort of mistaken belief will cause you to never find the root cause of the problem. Hence, the problem will persist forever. And just because defects are discovered in manufacturing does not mean that they were created in manufacturing. Find out why.

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2014

Flux Classification

02-15-2014

In the previous column, I discussed flux functions and general considerations in their selection. In my next three columns, I will review various types of fluxes.

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Major Types of Fluxes

01-20-2014

Organic acid (OA) fluxes are stronger than rosin fluxes but weaker than inorganic fluxes.

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