From the Show: A Hands-on APEX Session
On the first day of APEX, IPC and three instructors from BEST decided to bring a more pragmatic approach to a PCB repair topic taught in the technical program. Along with 24 participants, the instructors from BEST led a hands-on reballing session. After a lively, highly participative 60-min. question and answer session on the fundamentals of reballing, the reballing process, and its various attributes, participants eagerly began the hands-on session.
IMI Enjoys 40% Revenue Growth in 2011
"Despite a global economy saddled with Eurozone struggles and U.S. weaknesses, we grew our revenues. IMI remained profitable in spite of a very volatile marketplace," said Arthur Tan, President and CEO. By expanding its global footprint in 2011, IMI has achieved a diversity of marketplaces, serving varied segments of the electronics industry in different parts of the world.
IEC's Fiscal 1Q12 Revenue Up 18%
W. Barry Gilbert, Chairman of the Board and CEO, stated, "While revenues were up for the entire company, earnings were down significantly from the prior quarter. Key sections of the company continue to perform quite well. We continue to increase our revenue and our organic growth was in line with our estimates at just over 12%."
SMTAI 2011 Best Papers Announced
The SMTA is pleased to announce the Best Papers from SMTA International 2011. As speakers at SMTA International, individuals make contributions to the industry by sharing their research and findings. To reward exceptional achievement, $1,000 awards and plaques are given for the Best of Conference Presentation, Best of Proceedings Paper, and the Best International Paper.
Facing the Challenges of 2012 and Beyond
A diverse group of trends, including the return of manufacturing to the United States, the continued development of clean energy options and mobile communication devices, and the end of exemptions to RoHS chemical restrictions, all bring the potential to affect business in 2012.
Lingering Economic Uncertainties to Spur Declines in ECM
Following a year of expansion in 2011, the global electronics contract manufacturing business is expected to decline slightly in 2012, as continuing economic uncertainty in Europe and the United States constricts growth, according to an IHS iSuppli EMS & ODM Market Brief report from information and analysis provider IHS.
IPC APEX EXPO 2012 Includes Free Process Defect Clinic
Organized by IPC and the National Physical Laboratory (NPL), the free clinic will be held in the exhibit hall to assist event attendees with assembly and soldering process problems, RoHS compliance issues, solderability concerns, field failures and other process-related issues.
Flextronics Expands Romania Facility, Targets Medical Market
Flextronics has expanded its facility in Timisoara, Romania, to include a dedicated medical operation to better serve medical equipment and medical disposables OEMs globally. The expansion includes a newly refurbished production area and 1,300 square meters of class-eight clean room area.
Past, Present and Future of Package-on-Package
Package-on-package (PoP) technology has enabled PCB designers to conserve board real estate and reduce crosstalk, while simplifying testing of the decoupled memory and logic devices. SMTAI keynote speaker Lee Smith of Amkor Technology discusses PoP technology, ongoing industry collaboration, and standards development.
IPC: EMS Industry Returns to Growth
After economic setbacks in 2009, the world market for electronics EMS returned to growth in 2010, according to a study released by IPC. The EMS market is projected to grow 14.8% globally and 10.2% in North America this year. The study includes forecasts through 2015, provided by New Venture Research Corporation.
SMTAI to Discuss PCB Technology Challenges
The SMTA announced a session on Challenges and Solutions for PCB Technology which will take place Tuesday, October 18, 2011 during their annual conference, SMTA International, in Ft. Worth, Texas. Gil White, DDi Global, will chair the session and Laura Turbini, Ph.D., Research in Motion, will co-chair.
Building a "Due Diligence" Approach to Conflict Minerals Compliance: Can RoHS Provide a Model?
Sponsored by Republican U.S. Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas, Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act is designed to provide corporate accountability and public transparency to the sourcing of gold, tantalum, tin and tungsten in an effort to choke the supply of such minerals from, and the revenue to, rebel-controlled mines.
Reid: RoHS Bolsters Materials and Interconnections
Paul Reid, Program Coordinator at PWB Inc., discusses what's new in reliability testing and why he believes this is the "Year of Design." He explains how RoHS requirements have furthered the development of more robust materials and interconnections, as well as how the effects of design are starting to be a major influence on reliability.
Study of Quality Benchmarks for EMS Industry Now Available
The report is designed to provide information to EMS companies interested in comparing their key 2010 operating variables to those of other EMS providers by net sales and type of product. The study covers financial and production data, assembly attributes, yields, defect rates (DPMO), customer returns, supplier performance, customer satisfaction and certification data.
Winland Electronics' Positive Sales Trend Continues in Q2
"The positive sales trends we have been experiencing continued into our second quarter," said Brian Lawrence, CFO and Senior VP. "Sales were up 7% on a sequential quarterly basis, the result of a large project sale to a new customer, and continued strong sales from our existing customers."
Nortech Systems Reports 13% Sales Increase in Q2
Nortech Systems Incorporated reported net sales of $27.8 million for the second quarter ended June 30, 2011, a 13% increase over net sales of $24.7 million for the second quarter of 2010. "Our two newest acquisitions led the sales growth for industrial and medical customers," said Mike Degen, President and CEO.
Henkel Continues Solid Performance in Q2
"Henkel continued its solid performance in the second quarter, despite the challenging market environment. We achieved high organic sales growth and outperformed once again our relevant markets," said CEO, Kasper Rorsted. "All our business sectors contributed to this growth and, with double-digit increases in our growth regions, we improved the share of total sales in these markets to 42%."
IPC's Data Exchange Standard for Conflict Minerals Regulation
IPC will begin development of a data exchange standard to help the electronics manufacturing industry comply with forthcoming U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulations on conflict minerals at a kickoff meeting on September 22, 2011, held in conjunction with IPC Midwest Conference & Exhibition, Schaumburg, Illinois.
Incap's 1H Revenue Up 15% YoY
Sami Mykkänen, President and CEO of Incap Group, said, "Revenue developed favourably in the strategic focus areas of energy efficiency and well-being technology industries. The improving general economic situation has stimulated demand and the recovery of investment activities is especially evident in the increased sales of electrotechnical devices."
Moldable Solutions to Protect Electronics
Guest Editor Kelly Dack sits down with Dr. Brian Toleno, Director of Technical Service Engineering for Henkel Electronic Materials, to discuss a silver-plated copper (SPC) process for cost-effective treatment of various forms of the material. Dr. Toleno also shares an innovative, award-winning product called "Macromelt" which offers a moldable solution for incapsulative packaging of electronics.
Disruptive Climates the Focus of IPC Executive Summit
The event, scheduled for October 4–5, 2011, in San Jose, California, combines the strategic planning focus of IPC’s Management Meetings with the global business insights of its Market & Technology Conference. The summit will provide ideas and solutions that will help executives strategically map their companies' futures through today's disruptive climate.
Plexus Posts Fiscal Q3 Revenue of $559 Million
Dean Foate, President and CEO, commented, "Fiscal third quarter revenues were $559 million with EPS of $0.58. We experienced an exceptional level of forecast volatility during the quarter as customers broadly lowered their demand for the second half of our fiscal year."
Elecsys' EDMS Segment Posts 40% Sales Growth for FY2011
Sales for the company's Electronic Design and Manufacturing Services (EDMS) business segment increased 40% to approximately $13,807,000 for the fiscal year ended April 30, 2011, an increase of $3,945,000 from $9,862,000 in the prior fiscal year. The increase in sales was a result of steady increases in bookings and shipments over the past fiscal year.
Cleaning Technologies: Trends and Developments
As the developing electronics market sees modern and future electronics becoming smaller and smaller, the requirement for high performance and reliability becomes stronger than ever. To achieve good insulation resistance, and ensure adequate adhesion of conformal coatings and potting and encapsulation resins, the cleanliness of electronic assemblies is essential.
EPIC, Rocket Enter Marketing & Manufacturing Agreement
Under the terms of the agreement, the companies will engage in joint marketing and business development initiatives, featuring Rocket's world class prototype and new product introduction services and EPIC's award-winning volume manufacturing and supply chain capabilities.
Heraeus & Technica USA: The Latest in Solder Paste Tech
Anton Miric, Heraeus Product Line Director, and Frank Medina, Technica USA CEO, meet with Editor Pete Starkey to discuss the latest developments in solder pastes and adhesives, and their impact on the North American market.
BGA Routing Takes Center Stage in Vegas
Charles Pfeil, engineering director in Mentor Graphics' System Design Division, discusses his Designers Forum presentation "Effective BGA Fanouts." He predicts that large-scale BGAs will soon have over 2,000 pins and bring PCB designers a plethora of new routing issues.
RIT/CEMA Work to Solve Technical Issues
Dr. S. Manian Ramkumar, Ph.D., professor and Director of the Center for Electronics Manufacturing and Assembly (CEMA) at Rochester Institute of Technology, talks about the assistance his group provides the industry. Leading equipment and material suppliers have donated the latest and greatest equipment in support of efforts to help solve industry technical problems.
SMTA Releases SMT Certification Dates, Locations
The SMTA proudly announces four upcoming offerings of SMT Certification in Toronto, Schaumburg, Santa Clara and Fort Worth. Each program is a three-day offering consisting of a 1.5-day refresher workshop on topics in SMT Processes or Six Sigma/Greenbelt. The program concludes on days two and three with an open- and closed-book examination.
Ryder Industries to Expand to Inland China
The new manufacturing facility will not only provide state-of-the-art production capabilities and environmental impact management, but it also will promote economic development. The new 70,000 square meter manufacturing complex will offer fully integrated plastic injection, screen printing and painting capabilities, as well as SMT/PCBA and box-build under one roof.
Cisco Executive to Keynote Atlanta SMTA Expo
The SMTA announced today that Mark Brillhart, Vice President, Technology and Quality, Cisco, would keynote on the state of the electronics industry at its 15th annual Atlanta SMTA Expo Thursday, April 21, 2011 at 9:30 a.m. at the Gwinnett Civic Center.
Think You Only Need AOI? Think Again
The whole idea of AOI is to help ensure that what's coming off the line is exactly the same as the original with which it's being compared. AOI probably did its job just fine, or maybe not: There is a known or expected false call and escape rate with the AOI process, which, by the way, is why it can't be used for first article inspection.
Nordson Reports 23% Sales Increase in Q1
"Our global team delivered the best first quarter performance in Nordson's history," said Nordson President and CEO, Michael F. Hilton. "Our model of differentiated technology, application know-how and direct sales and service enabled us to capture business in both established and emerging markets. The organization continues to deliver superior value to our customers."
Strong EMS Activity in 2010
There were 46 completed EMS transactions in 2010, nearly doubling the 24 recorded in 2009. Similar to previous years, vertical/horizontal convergences were the most common type of transaction with 15 transactions in 2010, or 33% of total activity, compared to 12 transactions in 2009.
ALPHA SACX Plus Solder Alloys Secures China Patent
"We have made a significant investment in the development of our SACX Plus® family of alloys with the intention of providing high-value, lead-free solder options to assemblers, and we are pleased that China has joined other countries in recognizing their uniqueness," said Mike Murphy, Global Product Manager for Wave Soldering Materials.
Enics, Axis Enter Strategic Partnership Agreement
"Axis chose Enics because of its competitive price/performance, size and strategic fit with Axis manufacturing and logistics requirements," said Per Ädelroth, Vice President Operations. Enics was selected among the best EMS companies in the world to become a global partner for AXIS.
Flextronics Posts Strong Q3 Results; Sales Up 19%
Adjusted net income for the third quarter ended December 31, 2010 was $193 million, an increase of $55 million or 40%, and adjusted EPS increased $0.08 or 47% to $0.25, compared to $138 million and $0.17, respectively, for the year ago quarter.
NEPCON China 2011 Highlights Auto Electronics of the Future
The twenty-first edition of NEPCON China, which will take place at the Shanghai Everbright Convention and Exhibition Center May 1-13, 2011, will bring together top international manufacturers of electronic equipment to showcase developing trends in auto electronics manufacturing.
Outlook and Trends 2011: A Perspective
For 2011, expect the continuing focus on smaller, faster, lighter, less expensive electronics products; lead-free reliability to become accepted as reasonable for consumer products; and continued efforts to develop technology-based strategies to combat the counterfeit components crisis.
IEC Electronics: IPC Standards Define Expectation Levels
"For contract manufacturers, the IPC standards define reasonable expectations for products. It adds some sanity and clarity for manufacturers and customers. It’s nice to have a document that defines the requirements," said Jake Slezak, Manufacturing Engineer at IEC Electronics Corporation.
Unmasking a Counterfeit BGA
Although there are several main types of counterfeit components, by far the most abundant are components that have been stripped off used PCBs (E-scrap), refurbished, resurfaced and re-marked to reflect a newer single lot/date code. They are then misrepresented and resold and as original factory-new product.
IPC, NPL Host Soldering and Assembly Defects Webinar
According to Bob Willis, NPL Process Defects Database Consultant, the advent of lead-free technology made every step of the assembly process more difficult. "Common process problems today relate to the correct selection of printed board materials, surface finishes and soldering materials."
From electronica 2010: Electronics & EMS in India
QUAD Electronics' Andrew Scheele, Director, Corporate and Business Development, and Raminder Singh Soin, Managing Director, share their views with EMS Now's Philip Stoten during electronica 2010 on what makes the supply chain tick in India: Its successes, challenges and future, while drawing parallels with other manufacturing regions, both east and west of India.
Managing Dross in Soldering Processes
Wave, selective and related soldering processes involve large volumes of molten solder that are exposed to the atmosphere. Turbulence, oxygen exposure, temperature and other factors affect dross formation in wave soldering processes. Keith Sweatman and Keith Howell of Nihon Superior advise operators on how to reduce dross.
Considering a Halogen-Free Future? Know the Facts
To understand the halogen-free movement, one must fully comprehend the reason behind the push, as well as the differences between halogens and halides. This industry-sponsored effort is being driven primarily by increasingly environmentally-conscious customers, pressure from non-governmental environmental organizations and the desire by suppliers to be proactive.
United Against Counterfeiting: A Counterfeit EEE Parts Solution
Counterfeit electrical, electronic and electromechanical parts pose a significant threat in the global supply chain. Equipment failures or malfunctions can cause mission failures, health and safety concerns and could jeopardize national security. This paper will segment the market, address solutions and outline what each link in the supply chain can do to help eliminate the problem.
Rowland: New RoHS Annex Affects Assembly Industry
On September 24, 2010, the Exemption Annex to Directive 2002/95/EC was officially replaced by a new Exemption Annex (which is now a separate document) containing 39 Exemptions. According to the proposed RoHS recast, a four-year maximum validity period for the Exemptions is set to stimulate substitution efforts and transition the burden of proof to the Exemption applicant.
Conformal Coating vs. Encapsulation: Protecting Electronic Devices
Jade Bridges, R&D Manager at Electrolube Ltd., continues her look at conformal coatings this week. To ensure reliability of critical devices, it is essential that PCBs are protected to prevent reduced performance or, in the worst case, complete failure. This protection can be offered in the form of a conformal coating or potting and encapsulation resins.
Electroless Ni/Electroless Pd/Immersion Au/Electroless Au (ENEPIGEG) Plating Process For Gold Wire Bonding on Organic Package Substrates
This study examines the wire bonding reliability of electroless gold plating after heat treatment. Results indicate that in the ENIGEG process, the electroless Ni under the immersion Au/electroless Au diffused onto the surface of the gold plating by heat treatment and changed to nickel oxide, resulting in the prevention of wire bonding between the gold wire and the gold plating and a decrease in bonding strength.
New Solder Bumping Technology and Adapted Assembly Processes for 100 µm Pitch Flip-Chip Technology Using Capillary Flow or No-Flow Underfill, Part II
In the continuation of this paper, the authors present new cost-efficient solder bumping and adapted assembly technologies for the processing of flip-chips with a pitch of 100 µm or less and solder ball diameters of 60 µm or 50 µm, respectively.
New Solder Bumping Technology, Processes for 100 µm Pitch Flip-Chip Technology With Capillary Flow or No-Flow Underfill, Part I
The authors of this paper present new cost-efficient solder bumping and adapted assembly technologies for the processing of flip-chips with a pitch of 100 µm or less and solder ball diameters of 60 µm or 50 µm, respectively.
Section 14: PWB Vias, X-Sections
These images of SMT defects and attributes were compiled by consultant Tom Clifford. Section 14 includes images of partially filled vias, plugged vias, wide open vias, non-uniform via covers, annular ring defects, voids, top-side dimples and more. These images provide resources for training, quality control specs and standards and research.
Counterfeit Material Prevention and Detection
In this article, Paul Bodmer, Bruce Tostevin and Scott Mazur, Benchmark Electronics Inc., detail the methods used to prevent and detect counterfeit components for various industries such as telecommunications, military and aerospace. The objective is preventing counterfeit components and material from propagating into the manufacturing process.
Ionic Cleanliness Testing Research of PWBs for Purposes of Process Control, Part I
Many a company has learned the hard way that product reliability is directly related to the ionic cleanliness of a circuit board. In this study, the authors research low-residue and lead-free flux structures, identify solvent compositions that will dissolve these residue types and offer options for performing both bulk and site-specific ionic cleanliness testing methods.
Section 12: SMT Assemblies, T-Cycled Cracks
These images of SMT defects and attributes were compiled by consultant Tom Clifford. Section 12 includes images of non-collapsing BGA balls, CGAs, LCCCs, SMCs, gull-wings, x-sections and more. These images of SMT defects and attributes provide resources for training, quality control specs and standards and research
Component Performance Rising with Energy Requirements
Components that work as expected, and when required, are very important in general, and especially in harsh environments. After all, electronic systems are being used everywhere, from many thousands of feet underground or underwater to outer space.
Section 11: SMT Assembly Defects
These images of SMT defects and attributes were compiled by consultant Tom Clifford. Section 11 includes images of odd via-fill, fiber debris, lead-on-land, bridges, tombstoning, dead-shorts, "type G" defects and more. These images of SMT defects and attributes provide resources for training, quality control specs and standards and research.
Lead-Free in Mission Critical: Failure Is Not An Option
To confidently use lead-free in high-reliability applications, especially considering the EU drive to impose RoHS on some areas currently exempt, it seems prudent to step back and determine where we are, how we got here and what remains to be done. ECD's Grant Peterson guides us through the concerns with lead-free.
Incap Posts 18% Revenue Growth in 1H
Sami Mykkänen, President and CEO, said, "The period's revenue fell short of expectations, as demand was low due to the general economic recession, especially at the beginning of the year. In the second quarter, demand picked up markedly and many customers estimated their needs would increase in the latter part of the year."
Digital Pseudo-Color Inspection Reveals Hidden Soldering Defects
Computational tools that render digitally processed images in pseudo-color can enable inspectors to recognize soldering defects, such as lifted leads and cold solder, in SMT mounting processes. With enhanced images, comparative evaluations to determine cases of defects or no defects are easily accomplished.
SigmaTron Posts 29% Revenue Growth in Fiscal 4Q10
Gary R. Fairhead, President and CEO, commented, "I am pleased to report our third consecutive profitable quarter and, perhaps even more significant, a quarter in which our revenue grew nicely from the levels in quarters two and three."
007 Asian Coverage Expands With SMT Merger
For years, I-Connect007 has been covering the electronics market in Asia. With video and written content, in Mandarin and English, I-Connect007 has been there, on the ground in Asia, digging for the next story. With the acquisition of SMT Magazine, I-Connect007 has deepened and widened its coverage of the Asian PCB assembly market.
Real Time With... Brings Events to Your Screen
Trade shows and conferences are vital to the PCB assembly world. Where else can you meet so many potential customers and suppliers? Still, you can't make every industry event, and if you can’t be there, our Real Time With... video coverage is the next best thing to being there.
Real Time with...EMS Technology Videos
I-Connect007's Real Time with... has produced over 3,000 video interviews, conference presentations and product reviews at major events around the world. Past events include IPC APEX Expo, productronica, IPC Midwest, SMTA International, Mexitronica, NEPCON China and many more.
An Image Library of SMT Defects Section 6: BGA PCB Defects, Metallic Contamination
These images of SMT defects and attributes were compiled by consultant Tom Clifford. Section 6 includes images of solder splash, copper peaks, loose copper as well as other PCB defects that can cause problems at solder stencil printing.
Practical Components Designs Custom Circuit Board Practice Kits and Boards
Practical Components, supplier of solder training kits and materials, mechanical IC samples, or dummy components and SMD production tools and equipment, now designs custom practice PCBs or complete kits.
PCBA in a Wind Tunnel: Watch Thermal Management in Action
In this video, Mike Haskell, Advanced Thermal Solutions (ATS), talks about heat sink design and instrumentation. Using a miniature wind tunnel, he demonstrates how heatsinks change air velocity to cool PCB components.
An Image Library of SMT Defects Section 5: BGA PCB Defects, Mask
These images of SMT defects and attributes were compiled by consultant Tom Clifford. Section 5 highlights bad design, mis-registration, bad mask definition, metal splash, and other via defects on PCBs.
Incap Inks Partnership with Kenyan Thames Electricals
According to the agreement, Incap will design and manufacture inverters for the customer, with the first production sets being delivered in August. An estimated total of 5,000 to 8,000 units will be delivered to the customer this year with annual revenue from these products estimated reach one million euro.
FCT Assembly to Hold Open House at CA Facility
FCT Assembly will hold an open house at its new CA facility on July 12, walking attendees through a variety of processes, from CAD design though laser cutting. Bob Dervaes, VP of technology and engineering for the solder division, will speak.
Outsourcing Out? Some OEMs Choosing Assembly
For years, the industry focused on convincing OEMs to abandon electronics manufacture in favor of outsourcing. Yet, today, some OEMs are looking to bring electronics manufacture in-house. MannCorp Sales Manager Ed Stone explains the factors that are driving OEMs to invest in electronics assembly operations, rather than using the current outsource mode.
Orbotech Outlook: Sustained PCB Growth to Be Driven by Underlying Market Recovery, New Consumer Electronics Devices, and Growing China Presence in PCBs
Barclays Capital offers their insights from Orbotech (ORBK) Analyst Day. The following is from Orbotech’s PCB division presentation. Management discussed the fact that Orbotech continues to supply PCB systems to all of the major PCB manufacturers worldwide, including Samsung, LT, Compeq, Hitachi, Unimicron, Daeduck, Multek, Toshiba, LG, AT&S. Together, these PCB suppliers account for ~80% of the PCBs used in handsets.
New Nozzles, Software, and Equipment for Selective and Wave Soldering
These soldering products include selective soldering equipment, custom nozzles, selective soldering programming software, a compact wave soldering system, and a component lead re-tinning machine.
SPI Built onto a Screen Printer: Pemtron Demos the System
In this video, Steve Wong, Pemtron, showcases Pemtron’s TROI 3D solder paste inspection (SPI) module built onto the SJ Innotech screen printer, at IPC APEX EXPO 2010.
Video Demos: New IC Placer and Printer Technology from Assembleon
In these videos, SMT tours Assembleon's booth at IPC APEX EXPO, looking inside IC placers, chip shooters, feeders, and the printer and squeegee technology on display.
May Manufacturing Report: Growth Overall, But Supplies Tight
The manufacturing sector grew for the 10th consecutive month during May, driven by continued strength in new orders and production. Employment continues to grow. There are a number of reports, particularly in the tech sector, of shortages of components; this is the result of excessive inventory de-stocking during the downturn.
On the Show Floor at SMT Hybrid Packaging: Exhibits Preview II
The following dispensing products, inspection systems, pick-and-place equipment, dummy components and test boards, automation and support tools, and other products will be highlights of the SMT Hybrid Packaging show, June 8-10 in Nuremburg.
Medical Electronics Headed for Healthy Future Growth
This issue of the Henderson Forecast summary explores the rising costs of healthcare and the medical electronics market. Medical electronics growth slowed during the recession but is surging back, thanks to improved device design, expanded healthcare coverage in the U.S., and other factors.
Bed of Nails Test Fixture Using a PCB Rather than Wires
In this video, Craig Pynn, SiFO, shows SMT a bed of nails fixture made for in-circuit (ICT) and functional test (FT). The test fixture eliminates the wire bundle for better signal, less human intervention, and faster fixture turn-around with easy replication. SiFO is based in China.
Visit the Blakell Europlacer UK New Product Introduction and Process Day
Blakell Europlacer, designer and manufacturer of comprehensive SMT placement systems for the global electronics industry, will host a New Product Introduction and Process Technology Day at its manufacturing headquarters in Poole, Dorset. U.K. on June 23. Activities include expert presentations, a live SMT assembly line, and World Cup viewing party.
Video Interview on Pick-and-Place Feeders: Refurbished or New?
Dee Claybrook, Rapid Tooling, discusses the benefits of refurbishing and repairing pick-and-place feeders. Juki legacy feeders are compatible with the latest systems. Watch this video interview from IPC APEX EXPO 2010, held in Las Vegas in April 2010.
On the Show Floor at SMT Hybrid Packaging: Exhibits Preview I
The following solders, flash programmers, reflow oven profilers, feeders and pick-and-place systems, printers, inspection systems, and other products will be highlights of the SMT Hybrid Packaging show, June 8-10 in Nuremburg. Stay tuned to SMT’s Website, www.smtonline.com
, for more previews of the tradeshow.
New Products for Process Control in the PCB Assembly Facility: MES/ERP, Barcode Readers, and More
These new products include machine controllers, ERP software, a barcode scanner, laser marker, ESD control, MES, and other line-control products.
Flextronics, Jabil, Celestica, Others Present Business Outlooks
Organic growth versus mergers/acquistions? Lead times improving? How are the end markets? EMS providers Flextronics, Celestica, Jabil, and other electronics supply chain companies shared outlooks at the 7th annual Credit Suisse Electronics Supply Chain Conference. Read the main points summarized by Credit Suisse analysts William Stein, CFA, and Rahul Chadha.
Dispensing Valve Maker VERMES Technik Spins Out of Woellner as VERMES Microdispensing, Essemtec and Promess Hold Stock
VERMES Technik, the manufacturer of fast piezoelectric dispensing valves, has been spun out of the Woellner Group and turned into VERMES Microdispensing GmbH. The two new stockholders are Essemtec and Promess.
Gartner: Worldwide Mobile Phone Sales Grew 17% YoY in Q01 2010, Smartphone Sales Grew 48.7%
Among the most successful vendors were those that controlled an integrated set of operating system (OS), hardware and services. Smartphone sales to end users saw their strongest year-on-year increase since 2006. RIM, a pure smartphone player, made its debut in the top five mobile devices manufacturers. Apple increased its market share by 1.2 percentage points. Android’s momentum continued into the first quarter of 2010, particularly in North America, where sales of Android-based phones increased 707% YoY.
Nitrogen Generation from On-Site Gas: Look Inside the N-20
Bob Wolff, On-Site Gas, opens up the N-20 nitrogen generation system, explaining how the system makes nitrogen from the ambient air, for use in electronics assembly processes. This video is from IPC APEX 2010 in Las Vegas.
Watch Nordson Asymtek Conformal Coating Dispense Technology
Dan Ashley, Nordson Asymtek, talks about dispensing applications for conformal coating. Spray, bead, and jetting dispense of coatings are discussed, as well as solder paste and underfill dispensing. Watch the Nordson Asymtek dispense heads in action in this video from IPC APEX EXPO 2010.
Video Demonstration: Christopher Associates Shows Panel Cleaner
At IPC APEX EXPO 2010, Michael Moreau of Christopher Associates demonstrates a modular, flexible circuit board panel cleaner. This panel cleaner can remove lint and other contaminants from both sides of a flex circuit panel, one side of a panel with SMT components on the other side, etc.
Season Group Explains Why It Acquired US-based EMS Headquarters
Season Group acquired the assets of DC Electronics, a San Antonio, TX EMS provider, retaining all DC Electronics employees in Season Group USA. Season Group tells SMT why it added U.S.-based electronics assembly to its Asian and Canadian locations.
Consumer Electronics Sales Overall Trend Down; LCD TVs, PCs Continue Growth
The percentage of U.S. broadband households purchasing CE continues to decline year over year, falling from 87% in 2007 to 76% in 2009, according to international research firm Parks Associates. LCD TVs and PCs are exceeded sales expectations, which could indicate better revenue streams for savvy consumer electronics OEMs.
Bigger Facility for Macrotron, Enhances eReader Production
EMS provider Macrotron Systems Inc. moved its Fremont manufacturing facility across town to a former Intel building. The facility offers 40,000 square feet for electronics manufacturing and customization, particularly for the company’s Dittobook eReader production.
A Bad Economy Can Actually Help Future Growth
Arnon Tuval, President of ORPRO Vision LLC, discusses the acquisition of Orbotech's AOI division. The change-over was important to both companies--they worked together to meet with customers, making sure the right actions were taken in the move forward. The bad economy actually helped--the company took its time and made sure no opportunities were missed.
Tom Sharpe, SMT Corp., Will Keynote SMTAI with Counterfeit Awareness Message
The SMTA Annual Meeting and Awards Ceremony at SMTA International (SMTAI), October 27, 2010, will feature SMT Corporation's VP Tom Sharpe as the keynote speaker.
SMTC's First Quarter Revenue Up 37% YoY
John Caldwell, President and CEO: "We continue to see signs of economic recovery. We experienced wide spread increased customer orders in the first quarter and, thus far, in the second quarter. With this strong order intake combined with a large opening order backlog, we expect continued sequential second quarter revenue growth."
Present at IPC APEX EXPO 2011
Submissions dealing with reliability, head-on-pillow and lead-free repair and rework, as well as new research in growing areas such as photovoltaics and printed electronics are especially encouraged for IPC APEX 2011, April 12-15, 2011 in Las Vegas.
Small, Midsized Industrial Manufacturers Expect Better 2010, More Sustainable Products
The main challenge for small and midsized manufacturers in the year ahead will be to manage the increase in demand with capacity, monitoring how much of the uptick is due to inventory replenishment verses customer driven demand, and matching that with throughput and hiring decisions. This report comes from buying consortium Prime Advantage.
Williams Says He's Got "Big Shoes to Fill"
Dan Feinberg interviews his replacement as Chair of IPC's Government Relations Committee, DDi Corporation's Mikel Williams. Williams admits he's got some big shoes to fill, but is excited to support IPC in Washington D.C., especially as the organization works with the DoD and investigates "green" movements.
Watch Capacity Change on a Siemens SX Placement System
In this video, a Siemens technician adds capacity to a Siemens SX pick-and-place machine at APEX 2010. The many reasons to rent capacity, rather than purchase the maximum throughput/capacity on a system or upgrade traditionally, are discussed. Additional specifications of the SX placement machine are covered.
Henkel Reports Positive Q1 Results; Sales Up 7.8%
In the first quarter of 2010, Henkel generated sales of 3,512 million euros. In a recovering market environment, this constitutes an increase of 7.8% compared to the figure for the prior-year quarter. Henkel is confident of again outperforming its relevant markets in terms of organic sales growth.
NASA Anti-Counterfeiting Measures Fall Short of Validating Parts Authenticity
In 2009, a NASA probe project was delayed nine months and exceeded its budget by more than 20%, partly because of a counterfeit part. According to BrandWatch Technologies, brand security and product authentication solution provider, the problem extends beyond NASA’s dollars and timelines; risking personal safety, diminishing confidence in U.S. aerospace programs, and impacting the businesses of legitimate component manufacturers.
In-Stat Analysis: How Long Will the Apple Garden Last?
Apple, by all accounts, is a very successful high-tech company. The most recent success of the iPad demonstrates Apple’s unique position in the market as a device OEM and content aggregator, which allows it unprecedented interaction and interface to the customer for the device and the content and applications. In the process of developing a complete solution, Apple controls just about every step in the value chain. Jim McGregor provides this analysis on Apple for In-Stat.
Flexible Printed Circuit Boards: Global Strategic Business Report
This report from Research and Markets analyzes the worldwide markets for flex PCBs by end-use markets and production region (2007-2015). It includes an introduction to flex circuits, including PCB types, materials used to make flexible circuits, and the benefits of using flex over rigid PCBs.
EMS Merger and Acquisition Activity in Q01 Shows Expansion Drive: Lincoln International
There was an increase in Q'01 M&A activity compared to the previous four quarters. EMS companies are expanding well beyond their core manufacturing competencies. Overall, the economic conditions appear to have stabilized, creating created an opportunity for companies to pursue strategic investments within the EMS sector, according to this report from Lincoln International.
Pick-and-Place Takes Over More Functionalities: New Products
With changes in software, nozzles, drive systems, feeders, and other elements, pick-and-place systems can place bare die or LEDs, perform high-speed IC shooter functions, handle large connectors and other oddforms, etc. New products come from Siemens Electronics Assembly Systems, Count On Tools, Universal Instruments, Essemtec, MYDATA, Assembleon, and IPTE.
Etek Europe Launches Used SMT Division
Etek Europe Ltd, supplier of quality SMT equipment and services throughout Europe, launched a new division, Etek Used SMT, selling premium used equipment with a comprehensive warranty.
North American PCB Book-to-Bill Still Strong, Growing in March
“In the March data, we can really see the recovery in full swing,” said IPC President & CEO Denny McGuirk. “Rigid PCB bookings grew in double digits and continued to grow faster than shipments, which has kept the book-to-bill ratio strongly positive for the past 10 consecutive months. Both rigid PCBs and flexible circuits are gaining strength.”
IDC: Worldwide Electronic Manufacturing Services Will Return to Steady, But Uneven Growth in 2010
The EMS industry contracted by 11% in 2009, less than expected due to a resurgence of consumer spending late in the year. According to a new forecast from IDC, the EMS industry will enjoy a CAGR of 8% for the 2010-2014 forecast period. But the recovery is still on shaky ground, with periods of weakness expected into 2011.
New PCB Design and Device Programming Products
These design and device programming tools enable easier PCB assembly test, less complicated design updates, faster design, and easier integration of oddform components, among other benefits. Products come from ATS, EMA Design Automation, Numerical Algorithms Group, Stratford Digital and LogicSwap, ASTER Technologies, DfR Solutions and ARINC, Zuken, BPM Microsystems, and AVX.
Best Posters from IPC APEX 2010
Posters showing research on solder joint reliability, nanocrystalline copper deposition in PWB fab, tin whiskers, and PCB laminate properties research took the top prizes from IPC APEX Expo 2010, celebrating research in the SMT industry.
Survey Reveals Caution in Tech Supply Chain
VentureOutsource.com released findings from a survey of 586 electronics supply chain decision makers across North America, Europe, and Asia on the current business environment; volumes and expectations, and pricing trends. The survey was sponsored by electronics components distributing company Digi-Key.
Electronics Manufacturing Companies on the 2010 Fortune 500 List
OEMs, military contractors, chip makers, and contract electronics manufacturers are among the companies in Fortune Magazine's Fortune 500 listing for 2010, as well as parent companies for solder makers, printer companies, testers, etc.
Updates to IPC-6012 and IPC-A-600 Include Spec Changes for New Board Technologies and Processes
The new H revision of IPC-A-600, “Acceptability of Printed Boards,” serves fabricators and assemblers, particularly inspectors and product developers. IPC also released its companion document, the C revision of IPC-6012, “Qualification and Performance Specification for Rigid Printed Boards.”
Best Papers from IPC APEX EXPO 2010
IPC announced the winners of the 2010 Best U.S. and International Papers at IPC APEX EXPO, held last week in Las Vegas. Papers covered challenging rework, drop test on lead-free PCBs, embedded components, and head-in-pillow defects.
WPG/Yosun Merger May Challenge Avnet for World Leading Distributor
The merger of WPG Holdings Limited and Yosun Industrial Corp., both based in Taiwan, could create the world’s largest electronics distributor, according to iSuppli Corp., challenging Avnet and Arrow for the top electronics component distributor spot.
WAGO Brings Connector Technologies on North American Tour
WAGO Corporation’s Innovation in Automation Tour (IIAT) 2010 has twin vehicles currently crossing the U.S. and Canada, bringing WAGO’s automation, interconnect, and electronic products for interactive visits and demonstrations. WAGO provides spring pressure connection technology.
iSuppli iPad Teardown Reveals Interface-focused Electronics Design
With more than 40% of its bill of materials (BOM) dedicated to the display, touchscreen and other user interface components, Apple Inc.’s iPad represents a radical departure in electronic design compared to conventional products, according to a teardown conducted by iSuppli Corp. Battery cost and other features are dissected.
ZESTRON America Adds Ion Chromatography Cleanliness Test to VA Technical Center
ZESTRON Corporation installed ion chromatography (IC) at its Technical Center in VA, as part of the cleaning supplier’s “Global Link” Initiative to enhance its Technical Centers, located in the U.S., Malaysia, and in other global locations.
IPC-A-610E Released: Industry Requirements for Acceptability of Electronic Assemblies Updated
IPC released the E revision of IPC-A-610, "Acceptability of Electronic Assemblies." IPC’s most widely-used standard, which provides visual acceptance criteria for post assembly mechanical and soldering assembly requirements, now addresses additional technologies, including flexible circuits, board in board, package on package, depanelization and additional SMT terminations.
Updated Materials Declaration Standard IPC-1752A Addresses Revolving Door of Environmental Regulation Changes
Helping electronics manufacturing companies better manage the growing documentation required to ensure products comply with evolving environmental regulations, IPC — Association Connecting Electronics Industries has released IPC-1752A, "Materials Declaration Management." The A revision of the standard provides an updated and expanded industry-wide reporting format for material declaration data exchange between companies in the electronic interconnect supply chain.
Fuji America to Include Aegis Software with FUJI Flexa
Aegis Software announced an OEM bundling agreement with Fuji America Corporation, supplier of high-quality automated assembly equipment for surface mount applications. Under this agreement, announced at IPC APEX EXPO 2010, Fuji America will include Aegis NPI software for BOM, CAD, Gerber, and scanned board data conversion with each license of Fuji's line-level management and optimization software Fuji Flexa.
SMT Names Morey Corp. VP 1st SMT VISIONARY Winner
SMT, the source of engineering solutions for PCB manufacturing, awarded its 1st Annual SMT VISIONARY Award to Taymur Ahmad, VP of operations of The Morey Corporation, for his work bringing lean manufacturing strategy and growth to the EMS provider. The SMT VISIONARY Award recognizes leadership during the recession at an OEM, ODM, or EMS provider. SMT launched the VISIONARY reader award as part of PennWell Corporation’s 100th anniversary to celebrate the drive and initiative of SMT’s reader community.
SMT Celebrates 18th Annual SMT VISION Awards with Top Industry Products
SMT announced the winners of its 18th Annual SMT VISION Awards on Monday, April 5, 2010 during the 2010 IPC APEX EXPO at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Convention Center, Las Vegas. SMT recognized winning products and services in 18 categories, showcasing top-notch technology, efficiency, environmental benefits, and quality from the electronics assembly industry’s suppliers. SMT VISION Award winning products represent true value for the surface mount electronics assembly sector, as judged by a panel of industry experts and as assessed by the customers actually using these products.
Chipworks Teardown of the iPad: Few Changes in State-of-the-art Semiconductor Technologies
Reverse engineering and patent infringement analysis provider Chipworks found that Apple has followed the same approach with iPad that it perfected with its iPod and iPhone development by using conservative, lower-cost technology, and focusing its efforts on design and usability. Essentially, the iPad’s very small circuit board makes it a large iPod rather than a small personal computer (PC).
IPC APEX EXPO 2010: Exhibits Preview VII
IPC APEX EXPO is coming up April 6-9 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. This preview includes PCB materials from Rogers, TRI’s test solutions, IPS’s PCB production systems, carts from Bliss Industries, a rework system from Finetech, dross recovery with FCT Recovery, kitting carts from Inovaxe, ZESTRON’s environmentally neutral cleaning products, defect detection from Vi TECHNOLOGY, pick-and-place machines from Europlacer, ASYS process machines and EKRA screen printers, and Aster’s test products.
IPC APEX EXPO 2010: Exhibits Preview VI
IPC APEX EXPO is coming up April 6-9 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. This preview includes jet printing from MYDATA, 3M electronics products, Protron’s PCB fab and NBS’s EMS offerings, stencils and services from Fine Line Stencil, nitrogen generation from On Site Gas, rework products from Martin and OK International, a diverse offering from Christopher Associates, AOI and SPI from CyberOptics, selective soldering from APS Novastar, and dross processing systems from EVS International.
Presentations of Note at IPC APEX EXPO
Scan through some of the upcoming paper presentations and courses coming up next week, April 6-9 at IPC APEX EXPO in Las Vegas. Presenters come from Indium Corporation, Photo Stencil, UL, and more.
Nikon Forms Nikon Metrology with Metris Assets
Nikon created Nikon Metrology, Inc., a new company that combines Nikon Instruments Inc.’s industrial instruments business with the former Metris business, acquired by Nikon Corp. in 2009. Nikon Metrology, Inc., headquartered in Brighton, will focus on the industrial and manufacturing business markets for precision measuring and industrial microscopy.
Worldwide Electronics Manufacturing Services Vendor Shares
The Worldwide Quarterly Electronics Manufacturing Services report, released by Electronics.ca Publications, covers quarterly revenue by region and product segment for all electronic manufacturing services (EMS) and original design manufacturing (ODM) companies in the EMS database, from Q’01 2004 through Q’04 2009.
Update of IPC J-STD-609 Provides Greater Delineation of Lead-free Solders for Marking and Labeling
IPC released the A revision of IPC J-STD-609, "Marking and Labeling of Components, PCBs and PCBAs to Identify Lead (Pb), Lead-Free (Pb-Free) and Other Attributes." This standard presents a marking and labeling system that aids in electronics assembly, rework, repair, and recycling, and now provides additional codes for more precise specification of certain lead-free solders.
SMT Equipment Investments Increase in 2010
This month, Siemens Electronics Assembly GmbH (SEAS) released its research on order bookings for October 2009 through February 2010, showing more than 3× growth over the same period 1 year ago; Universal Instruments Corp. installed an additional line at an existing customer site, which is increasing capacity. BPM Microsystems also announced a major sale to a programming center in the U.K.
Presentations to Attend at IPC APEX EXPO
This is a sampling of the many technical papers and posters that will be presented during the conference at IPC APEX Expo, April 6 through 9 in Las Vegas. These include cleaning topics, soldermask application, test and inspection, solders, new package types and assembly, and more.
IDTechEx Releases Report on Printed, Organic, and Flexible Electronics
"Printed, Organic & Flexible Electronics Forecasts, Players and Opportunities 2010-2020" provides detailed ten year forecasts by device type. The market is analyzed by territory, printed versus non-printed, rigid versus flexible, inorganic versus organic, cost of materials versus process cost, etc. It has more than 200 tables and figures. Activities of over 1000 leading companies are given.
Raising the Standards in Las Vegas
IPC Vice President of Standards and Technology, Dave Torp, sits down with Editor Steve Gold to update engineers on the latest standards development initiatives, including what standards will be released at this year's IPC APEX Expo. Torp also reviews how standards are developed and who can get involved.
Environmental Management Systems: Why ISO 14001 Now?
Technology Forecasters Inc.’s Pamela Gordon finds many North American companies certifying to ISO 14001, the international standard for environmental management systems. While ISO 14001 is not new, until recently, most technology companies that do not manufacture hardware opted out of the ISO 14001 track, stating that their manufacturing outsource partners were certified. Why now are many non-manufacturing electronics companies and software firms opting in to creating an environmental management system and certifying to ISO 14001?
Preview the Innovative Technology Center at IPC APEX EXPO
IPC announced the products that will be featured in the Innovative Technology Center (ITC) at IPC APEX EXPO, April 6–8, 2010 in Las Vegas. Assessed by an IPC Review Board of industry experts, the products were selected based on their representation of a new or emerging technology of significant value and relevance to the electronics manufacturing industry. This year’s winners demonstrated innovation in materials, test and assembly technology.
Highlights: IPC APEX Expo Presentations
This is a sampling of the many technical papers and posters that will be presented during the conference at IPC APEX Expo, April 6 through 9 in Las Vegas. These include PCB design tutorials, tin whisker growth studies, solar panel discussions, and more.
New Specialized Soldering Equipment for Selective, Reflow, Rework, and Wave Systems
Seho introduced a process gas cleaning system, Rehm debuted a new cooling zone design, Christopher Associates added a fluxless soldering robot, Seika released a nano rework station as well as a solder paste recycling unit, ACE added a spot preheat with nitrogen, and Miyachi Unitek introduced a weld monitoring system.
IPC Urges EU to Incorporate Science in RoHS Recast
IPC – Association Connecting Electronics Industries released a white paper, Recasting the RoHS Directive: An Opportunity to Solidify its Scientific Basis in Support of Comprehensive Environmental Regulation, urging members of the European Union (EU) Council and Parliament to ensure that the revised RoHS Directive be scientifically based and fully aligned with the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) Regulation. Copies of the white paper will be sent to members of the EU Council and members of the EU Parliament’s Environment Committee.
Geotest and Pickering Form Strategic Alliance in PXI Test
Geotest - Marvin Test Systems, PXI and PC-based test equipment provider, created a Strategic Alliance program with Pickering Interfaces, a test supplier for signal switching and conditioning. The Alliance combines Geotest's expertise in digital test, system integration, and automated test equipment (ATE) software with Pickering's catalog of PXI switching and signal conditioning products.
IPC Seeks Input on Best Industry Practices for Intellectual Property Protection
The IPC Intellectual Property Committee will release its first draft of a standard for the protection of intellectual property (IP) designed into printed circuit boards (PCBs) at an open meeting, Tuesday, April 6, 2010, at IPC APEX EXPO in Las Vegas. The draft, “Best Industry Practices for Intellectual Property Protection,” is intended to assist printed board manufacturers in the protection of IP for their customers in commercial, industrial and military/high-reliability markets. Industry members from all segments of electronics manufacturing are invited to attend the meeting to review the draft standard and provide input.
IPC APEX EXPO 2010: Exhibits Preview IV
IPC APEX is coming up April 6–9 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. This preview includes electrical test products from ECT, inspection systems from ORPRO and VJ Technologies, solder paste inspection on-printer from Milara and CyberOptics, Seho’s soldering equipment and FCT’s solder pastes, consumables and nozzles from Count On Tools, rework from VJ Technologies, and process control software from Valor, as well as various PCB assembly machinery from Seika.
Brady Polyimide Labels Tested to Withstand Precision Cleaning Chemicals for Electronics
Brady Worldwide Inc. and ZESTRON partnered to conduct extensive chemical compatibility testing on Brady’s line of polyimide labels, which are commonly used as printed circuit board (PCB) identification labels. According to the test results, Brady polyimide labels can withstand ZESTRON’s latest cleaning chemicals, enabling electronics customers to apply Brady polyimide labels pre-process during the manufacturing of circuit boards.
Global Strategic Business Report on PCBs
Research and Markets released “A Global Strategic Business Report: PCBs,” analyzing the global market for printed circuit boards (PCBs) in US$ million. The major markets analyzed include the US, Canada, Japan, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and rest of world (ROW), with forecasts through 2015. It identifies major geographical and technological changes coming for the PCB fab industry.
EMI Builds Products to Promote Health with Medical Certification
Express Manufacturing, Inc. (EMI), an electronics manufacturing services (EMS) provider, is building a line of products for OEMs to promote health. The company recently obtained ISO 13485 certification for medical device manufacturing and invested in Fuji XPF chip shooters for medical electronics production.
SMTC Reports 16% Revenue Increase in 4Q
Despite a challenging economic environment, in which SMTC's revenue declined from $206.9 million to $179.5 million, the company produced net earnings from continuing operations for the full 2009 year of $2.4 million, increasing $0.8 million or 46% over 2008 results.
Banner Year for HB-LED; OLEDs and LEDs Also Fare Well
EPIC, the European Photonics Industry Consortium, released “LEDs: The 2009 Market Review.” The report, which is distributed exclusively to EPIC members, tracks the response of the lighting and display industries to one of the most difficult economic crises in recent years. HB-LED and OLED unit production figures as well as revenues have been summarized for major players around the world for the two-year period of 2008 and 2009.