Printed Circuit Design & Fab Circuits Assembly June 2021 cover
June 2021
white arrow with black shadow
APCT Advertisement
Accutrace Advertisement
Summit Interconnect Advertisement
June 2021 • VOL. 38 • NO. 6
Printed Circuit Design and Fab Circuits Assembly logo
First Person
6
A fab proposal.
Mike Buetow
money matters
14
How to be a better worker.
Peter Bigelow
16
Finding employees post-Covid.
Susan Mucha
Tech Talk
18
Raising the topline.
John Burkhert, Jr.
24
Energy stores.
Terry Jernberg
26
Time to adopt data-driven planning methods.
Alun Morgan
27
BGA vias and routing.
Nick Koop
42
Substrate alignment.
Clive Ashmore
44
BGA opens and solder compression.
Bob Willis
Departments
June 2021 • VOL. 38 • NO. 6
Printed Circuit Design and Fab Circuits Assembly logo
Features
28
PCB Design
Electromagnetic compatibility problems are often responsible for redesign cycles during the PCB design process, but once engineers and designers understand the basics, they see there’s nothing mystical about it.
by Ralf Brüning
Printed Circuit Design & Fab Circuits Assembly June 2021 cover
30
Traceability
Blockchain-based provenance applications have been developed and broadly implemented, including electronics, where we are beginning to see them in the reverse supply chain.
by Quentin B. Samelson
32
Supply Chain
The ongoing IC lead-time crisis is pushing the margins of EMS companies and leaving their OEM customers scrambling. It’s time to share the risks.
by Joe Fama
36
EMS Top 50
And how the largest EMS companies are adapting.
by Mike Buetow
40
Tooling
Backend processes such as routing and coating can be optimized for cost savings.
by DAVE McADEN
IN the Digital Edition
How do you hone your printed circuit engineering skills?
by KELLY DACK
ON PCB CHAT (pcbchat.com)
Repair/Rework
with Norman Mier
Growing the EMS
with Allison Budvarson and Chad Budvarson
POSTMASTER: Send address changes to
PRINTED CIRCUIT DESIGN & FAB/CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY, PO Box 470, Canton, GA 30169
Rush PCB Advertisement
DownStream Technologies Advertisement
Editorial
Editor in chief
Mike Buetow, 617-327-4702, mbuetow@upmediagroup.com

SENIOR Editor
Chelsey Drysdale, 949-295-3109, cdrysdale@upmediagroup.com

design technical Editor
Pete Waddell

editorial office
P.O. Box 470, Canton, GA 30169

PCD&F CONTRIBUTING EDITORS
Akber Roy, Peter Bigelow, John Burkhert, Mark Finstad, Bill Hargin, Nick Koop, Greg Papandrew

Circuits Assembly CONTRIBUTING EDITORS AND ADVISORS
Clive Ashmore, David Bernard, Robert Boguski, John D. Borneman, Joseph Fama, Susan Mucha, Chrys Shea, Jan Vardaman, Ranko Vujosevic

Production

Art Director and production
blueprint4MARKETING, Inc., production@upmediagroup.com

Sales
Sales DIRECTOR
Frances Stewart, 678-817-1286,
fstewart@upmediagroup.com

SENIOR SALES ASSOCIATE
Brooke Anglin, 404-316-9018,
banglin@upmediagroup.com

EXHIBIT sales
Frances Stewart, 678-817-1286,
fstewart@upmediagroup.com

PRINT/electronic Reprints
banglin@upmediagroup.com

SUBSCRIPTIONS
For changes, additions or cancellations: subscriptions@upmediagroup.com.
UP Media Group, Inc.
president
Pete Waddell

vice president, sales and marketing 
Frances Stewart

vice president, editorial and production
Mike Buetow

director of group shows
Alyson Corey, acorey@upmediagroup.com

Printed Circuit Design & Fab/Circuits Assembly is distributed without charge to qualified subscribers. For others, annual Subscription Rates in U.S. funds are: $80 (U.S. and Canada), $145 (all other countries). Single copy price is $8.50. All subscription and single copy orders or inquiries should be directed to Printed Circuit Design & Fab/Circuits Assembly, PO Box 470 Canton, GA 30169, email subscriptions@upmediagroup.com. Photocopies and issues on Microfilm/Microfiche (16mm, 33mm or 105mm) are available from University Microfilms International, 300 N. Zeeb Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48106, Telephone 313-761-4600.

Printed Circuit Design & Fab/Circuits Assembly is published monthly by UP Media Group Inc., PO Box 470 Canton, GA 30169. ISSN 1939-5442. GST 124513185/ Agreement #1419617.

Periodicals postage paid at Canton/Ball Ground, GA, and additional mailing offices. © 2021, UP Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
Reproduction of material appearing in Printed Circuit Design & Fab/Circuits Assembly is forbidden without written permission.

Postmaster: Send address changes to
Printed Circuit Design & Fab/Circuits Assembly, PO Box 470 Canton, GA 30169.

UP Media Group logo
TLB Advertisement
Caveat Lector
Portrait photo of a smiling Mike Buetow
mike
buetow
editor-
in-chief
EMS Past is Prologue
I

‘m often asked what I think the electronics manufacturing company of the future will look like. I know this: It will be different than it looks today.

Why am I so confident? In part because today’s firms don’t look like they did when I entered the industry in 1991 (yikes!). Back then, dominant players were the bluebloods like IBM, Digital Equipment and Hewlett-Packard (you may know them as HP). These were all-in-one firms. They designed chips, fabbed boards, built assemblies, and shipped their own products.

Then someone got the bright idea that “merchant” (the terme de ce jour, as opposed to captive, meaning in-house) manufacturing businesses could unlock value by spreading costs of production across many customers and ensuring close(r)-to-steady-state operations. In reality, that never quite happened, but the mass outsourcing that took hold has never ceded ground.

Sigrity Aurora Analysis information

Analysis-Driven Design


How to Avoid Power Delivery Problems in your PCBs


How to Reduce Power Starvation and Hot Spots in your PCBs

Impedance Analysis

Coupling Analysis

Cadence Channel Partner logo
EMA Design Automation logo
Electronic Design & Manufacturing Advertisement
Around the World
PCDF People
Portrait photo of a smiling Steve Hudson against a white background
Firan Technology Group named Lance Riley general manager. He has more than 25 years’ experience in PCBs with Unicircuit, TTM and Lone Star Circuits.
Insulectro promoted Michelle Walsh to vice president of product management.

IWLPC named Max Min, Ph.D., Jae-Gwon Jang and Bryan Kasprowicz winners of its best paper awards.

Portrait photo of a smiling Steve Hudson against a white background
Sunstone Circuits named Kevin Beattie quality assurance manager. He has more than 25 years’ experience in PCB manufacturing.
Tech Etch appointed Brian Roberts chief financial officer.
Portrait photo of a smiling Steve Hudson against a white background
Trackwise named Steve Hudson chief operating officer. He has over 20 years’ experience in automotive and aerospace with MG Rover, Bentley Motors, Rolls Royce Aerospace, and Williams Advanced Engineering.
TTM named Roy Alcus operations manager.

Zuken promoted Jeroen Leinders to eCADStar business manager.

Around the World
EU-Funded Project: Recycling CRMs in PCBs Should be Made Law
ST. GALLEN, SWITZERLAND – End-of-life printed circuit boards are among several electrical and electronic products containing critical raw materials, the recycling of which should be made law, says a new UN-backed report funded by the EU. A mandatory, legal requirement to recycle and reuse CRMs in select e-waste categories is needed to safeguard from supply disruption elements essential to manufacturers of important electrical, electronic and other products, says the European consortium behind the report, led by World Resources Forum.

The CEWaste consortium warns access to the CRMs in these products is vulnerable to geopolitical tides. Recycling and reusing them is “crucial” to secure ongoing supplies for regional manufacturing of electrical and electronics equipment. Today, recycling most of the products rich in CRMs is not commercially viable, with low and volatile CRM prices undermining efforts to improve European CRM recycling rates, which today are close to zero in most cases.

Around the World
US Senator Proposes Bill to Track PCBs in US Defense Systems
WASHINGTON – A US Congressman in late April introduced a bill requiring defense contractors to notify the US Department of Defense if China, Russia, Iran or North Korea produce any printed circuit boards used in their electronics systems. The legislation by Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) also proposes the government allocate an undisclosed amount over 10 years to fund the domestic electronics supply chain.

In a statement in support of the bill, called the PCBetter Act, Sen. Hawley called Chinese-made PCBs “a serious threat” to America’s defense systems. “It is imperative that we give the Department of Defense the tools it needs to secure its printed circuit board supply chains, so that our warfighters can have full confidence in the weapons they rely on to protect our nation.”

Datest Advertisement
Around the World
SERO Acquires Fellow EMS Semecs
ROHRBACH, GERMANY – SERO GmbH has acquired Solid Semecs BV in a deal that was consummated on Apr. 30 but is retroactive to Jan. 1. Financial terms were not disclosed, but Semecs shareholder Rademaker Beheer has been bought out as part of the deal.

The move is part of SERO’s international expansion and growth strategy.

SERO specializes in high-volume manufacturing for automotive and industrial customers. Automotive makes up 85% of the company’s sales. The company employs 300, primarily in Germany, and has annual sales topping €80 million ($98 million). Semecs focuses on medium-volume and manual activities, and has ISO 13485 (medical) and IATF 16949 certifications. Semecs generates 85% of sales in the industrial and medical sectors and 15% in the automotive industry. It has an engineering center in the Netherlands and production in Slovakia. Semecs has annual sales of approximately €70 million ($86 million) and about 460 employees. (MB)

SEMI Advertisement
Around the World
CA People
Dave Trail
Arch Systems hired Dave Trail as VP of sales. He has 27 years’ experience in electronics manufacturing equipment, processes and MES software.
Craig Brown
Europlacer Americas named Craig Brown regional manager for the south, southeast and central US. He was sales manager for DEK in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
Henkel named Rodrigo Aguilar Limas business development manager – Advanced Driving and Safety Electronic Components.

Horizon Sales added Kyle Keydel to its sales team.

Kimball Electronics named Jana Croom CFO, replacing Michael Sergesketter, who is retiring.

Around the World
Escatec Acquires JJS to Expand EMS Reach into Europe
PENANG, MALAYSIA – Escatec acquired 100% of UK-based JJS Manufacturing in a private deal in mid-May. The acquisition adds electromechanical production facilities in the United Kingdom and Czech Republic to Escatec’s predominantly Southeast Asia manufacturing locations.

The move permits Swiss-owned Escatec, headquartered in the Bayan Lepas on Penang island, to cater to OEMs requiring products to be manufactured or assembled in the UK or Central Europe, the company said in announcing the deal.

Escatec has annual revenues of more than $200 million, and the acquisition of JJS (annual revenue: $70 million) and an expansion of its Malaysian operations is expected to push yearly revenues to above $300 million. “This acquisition is a direct outcome of our strategic plan to grow Escatec into a major player in the global EMS industry and further demonstrates our commitment to serve our customers’ needs,” said Patrick Macdonald, CEO, Escatec. (MB)

Around the World
CA Briefs
Acromag installed a Kurtz Ersa HR-550 BGA rework system.

Some of the world’s biggest chip buyers, including Apple, Microsoft and Alphabet Google, have joined chipmakers such as Intel to create a new lobbying group to press for government chip manufacturing subsidies.

Apple ramped its US investments, with plans to make new contributions of more than $430 billion and add 20,000 new jobs across the country over the next five years. The company’s original five-year goal of $350 billion was set in 2018.

Bright Machines, a developer of software-driven automation processes, is being acquired by SCVX, a publicly traded special purpose acquisition company. Closing is expected to occur in the second half of 2021. Separately, the company named as manufacturers’ reps PAC Global distributor in the Southwestern US and Mexico and MaRC Technologies in the Pacific Northwest US.

CEM installed a Yamaha high-speed placement line.

Market Watch
EDITED by CHELSEY DRYSDALE
Component Crunch

Trends in the U.S. electronics equipment market (shipments only)

%CHANGE
JAN.
FEB.
MAR.
YTD%
Computers and electronics products
1.2
-0.6
0.3
8.5
Computers
6.5
2.0
-2.6
2.7
Storage devices
20.4
-5.2
-3.8
21.6
Other peripheral equipment
9.9
-2.3
-1.8
17.6
Nondefense communications equipment
-5.5
-0.8
1.5
14.8
Defense communications equipment
4.5
0.0
-1.8
6.9
A/V equipment
17.7
-7.1
2.1
17.4
Components1
1.1
-0.1
1.7
8.7
Nondefense search and navigation equipment
3.0
-0.2
-0.5
0.6
Defense search and navigation equipment
4.7
-2.5
-0.4
2.7
Medical, measurement and control
2.2
-1.2
0.9
9.2
rRevised. *Preliminary. 1Includes semiconductors. Seasonally adjusted.
Source: U.S. Department of Commerce Census Bureau, May 4, 2021
ROI
Life is Drama, But Work Doesn’t Have to Be
Five ideas for being a better worker.
“People who need people, they’re the luckiest people in the world,” or so the song goes. If that’s true, though, why do I feel so unlucky?

For many years, colleagues from virtually every industry imaginable have agreed their Number One need, desire, concern and frustration is finding good people to hire. Regardless of job level or education experience, hiring qualified people is possibly the biggest challenge industry faces globally.

In my little corner of the world, which happens to be close to some of the most prestigious universities and colleges in the world, executives in companies of all sizes tell me the mantra is, “Where are the good people?” (Note: No one asks, “Where are the people?” The operative word here is “good.”)

PCB2DAY Advertisement
FOCUS ON BUSINESS
Finding Employees: The Next Big Challenge
EMS companies are undertaking a range of measures to appeal to new recruits.

Material constraints combined with unanticipated spikes in demand and shortages in transportation capacity apparently aren’t enough of an electronics manufacturing services (EMS) management challenge for 2021. Labor shortages are also an issue, despite unemployment numbers double what they were pre-Covid. The reasons are complex. While government stimulus payments and more generous unemployment insurance may be incentivizing some to stay home, other factors such as lack of childcare resources or health concerns are also at play. The availability of more remote work options and relocation of previously available workforce due to Covid restriction adaptations are also factors.

In a constrained labor market, the manufacturing sector often finds it hard to recruit. Several decades ago, everyone had friends and family who worked in factories and spoke of the benefits of that career choice. The service economy and offshoring changed that. Today, many potential employees do not even consider manufacturing sector jobs.

Sunstone Advertisement
designer’s notebook
Money-Saving Tips for Printed Circuit Board Design
Raising the topline with good execution will make up for the expense of expediting development.
There is a simple equation when it comes to counting profits. The fixed and overhead costs must be less than the revenue for there to be profit. The first units out of the gate owe the company for all the nonrecurring engineering (NRE) costs. The item will be in the red until all that is paid back by the margin between unit cost and unit price.

In many sectors of the economy, particularly commercial, the cost of goods sold (COGS) is close to the selling price, meaning little margin after overhead is accounted for. (PCB design is among the overhead costs.) Many units must leave the factory and find a consumer before the project hits the breakeven point. Product cycles are such that price erosion puts the squeeze on margins right from the beginning. Consumer hardware is a tough game, no doubt.

The DIGITAL Route
Test for Design: How You Measure Up?
The chairman and chairman emeritus describe the past and future.
In this month’s column I convey the value of honing a skillset and the importance of being able to measure that skillset. Next, I hand it off to PCEA Chairman Steph Chavez, who offers a positive outlook on PCEA activities over the summer months. Again, I am happy to provide our readers with a growing list of events coming up in 2021.
PCEA Updates
How do you hone your printed circuit engineering skills? Are your skills measureable? We work in an industry that relies on analysis, checking, measurement, feedback and adjustment to improve process and products.

When we think about PCB engineering, we tend to consider product success in terms of process steps: people defining analysis criteria and working to make the product more useful, efficient and valuable.

Jernberg PI
Meeting On-time Power Requirements All the Time
In PDN design, maintain a low impedance over a range of frequencies, as opposed to just one.
Achieving a robust and functioning power distribution network isn’t difficult if we provide both the capacity and responsiveness needed at each device. Previous columns addressed capacity concerns, discussing the need for sufficient copper (or an alternative conductor) between a voltage source and any load depending on it for its supply. Here, we build on those and examine what’s required to maintain that network at a steady voltage. This relies on sufficient “energy stores” and the conduction paths needed to deliver charge quickly to any location on the board experiencing “instantaneous demand.”

DC vs. AC (aka static vs. transient). Historically, nearly all power conversations pertaining to printed circuit boards have been lumped into two categories, with the terms “power DC” and “power AC” emerging as almost standard terminology. Power DC is understandable as it addresses PDN capacity issues associated with inadequate copper.

MATERIAL GAINS
The Importance of Logistics and Supply-Chain Management are Still Underestimated
The electronics industry should adopt data-driven planning methods.
For many companies, supply-chain management has become a major challenge as the pandemic has continued to disrupt all our lives. As lifestyles have become home-based, for work and leisure, demands have shifted from services to products: materials and tools for lockdown projects, gaming and video equipment, and extra work-from-home IT. There is a global shortage of shipping containers and ships to carry them. As a result, shipping costs have increased sharply. It could take a long time for container costs to return to pre-pandemic levels. Added to that, the spread of the virus has disrupted and depleted workforces, resulting in backlogs and delays.

On top of the misery came the recent blockage of the Suez Canal, adding several days of delay as the backlog was cleared. And, of course, there were domino effects at ports around the world, as cargo was unable to move into or out of the system. The problem has raised questions about the future of super-large container ships and strengthens the argument for using larger numbers of smaller vessels.

HDP Advertisement
THE FLEXPERTS
BGA Rules for Rigid-Flex PCBs
Strategies for vias and routing.
It seems every new design has at least one BGA component on the board. The 1.0mm pitch BGA has become vanilla. Even the 0.8mm pitch BGA is commonplace. These components are not limited to rigid PCBs; BGAs of all shapes and sizes are implemented in flex and rigid-flex designs as well.

The rules for BGAs are much the same whether the board is rigid or rigid-flex. Due to some of the material differences in a rigid-flex, however, extra care is recommended when it comes to the artwork and the trace routing in the BGA field.

Let’s start with pad and via design. For microvias, many suppliers recommend staying at or above 0.005″ diameter vias for reliability reasons. Much experience tells us vias smaller than 0.005″ tend to have a much lower mean time between failure (MTBF) than vias at or greater than 0.005″. In more benign applications, smaller vias may be an option. If the product will experience temperature extremes, however, the conservative bet is to stay above 0.005″ diameter microvias. Depending on the design and manufacturer, the associated pads may range from 0.010″ to 0.012″. Smaller pads risk a via sliding off the edge of the pad. If it does, the risk is the laser may cut through the dielectric and down to the next copper layer.

PCB DESIGN
4 Areas for Controlling EMC in PCB Design
EMC for PCB design is anything but black magic.
by Ralf Brüning
Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) problems are often responsible for redesign cycles during the PCB design process, but once engineers and designers understand the basics, they see there’s nothing mystical about it.

EMC is the branch of electrical engineering and physics that deals with the unintentional generation, propagation and reception of electromagnetic waves (in the E and H fields). These can cause undesirable effects in electronic devices, including functional interferences, malfunctions, or even physical damage.

Generally, two fundamental aspects are considered. First, the emission referring to the unwanted generation of electromagnetic energy and its transmission to the sinks, along with the necessary countermeasures to reduce such emission. Second, the respective susceptibility to interference relating to the operation of electrical/electronic equipment (or components) that become “victims” of unintended electromagnetic interference (EMI).

Traceability
What is Blockchain, and How Can It Solve Problems for Electronics Manufacturers?
Solving “track and trace” problems, even in reverse.
by Quentin B. Samelson

To get a sense for how blockchain can address issues in the electronics industry, it may help to start with a story about an earlier technology. A young electrical engineer in 1980 had a job interview with an industry veteran who asked if he had ever heard of a thing called a “vacuum tube.” The young engineer admitted his semiconductor class had included a one-hour lecture demonstrating how field-effect transistors worked like vacuum tubes.

“When I was in college, they made us take a semester of tube theory because they thought it might be useful some day!” the veteran exclaimed. His outburst highlighted a common theme in emerging technology. More than 50 years later, it was easy for the next generation of engineers to see the number of new products enabled by vacuum tubes, even though by that time solid-state devices had already largely replaced them. But during the 1920s, when vacuum tubes represented the latest innovation in technology, it was difficult to see they would lead to radar, FM stereo, television, and rock concerts. In the same way, it’s doubtful the creators of the internet anticipated using it to watch videos, hail rides, or monitor a newborn baby in the crib. Even those of us lucky enough to apply the latest advancements in technology are unlikely to foresee all the ways new technology will be applied.

Fischer Technology Advertisement
Supply Chain
4 Suggestions for Overcoming the IC Inventory Crisis
As lead times recall the Y2K fiasco, EMS firms and OEMs must share the risks. by Joe Fama

The ongoing IC lead-time crisis is pushing the margins of EMS companies and leaving their OEM customers scrambling. As of this writing, production scheduling under the conditions of withering lead times calls for unprecedented measures riddled with hunches and diminishing hope for acceptable recoveries. For now, production planning is all over the map, with EMS companies working closely with their customers to get through this period without major damage to OEMs’ brands and customer loyalty.

Today, lead times for ICs are snowballing up to 25 weeks on average, with some of the harder-to-source components such as tantalum capacitors hitting the 40-week mark (FIGURE 1). TSMC, one of the largest IC manufacturers in the industry, forecasts the global shortages of semiconductors could linger into next year.1 The ringing note stamped on all lead-time quotes is “subject to change,” and in many cases lead times are downgraded to “TBD,” leaving manufacturers spinning for short-term solutions.

Circuits Assembly Advertisement
Nordson ASYMTEK Advertisement
EMS Top 50
How M&A and India Will Reshape the Electronics Manufacturing Landscape
Covid grabbed all the headlines in 2020, but other longer-term stories began to emerge. by Mike Buetow

For most, 2020 can be summed in one term, and that term is Covid-19, of course. The pandemic disrupted supply lines, shut down factories around the world, and pushed many companies to the brink of financial collapse, to say nothing of the extraordinary and tragic loss of life.

Covid affected everything, but the rebound was sharp and quick. Manufacturers reconfigured assembly lines to tool up for medical devices like ventilators and face masks. The financial hit from the viral tsunami that erupted from China, which undertook a nationwide shutdown in February 2020, and rippled throughout Europe and North America in the following months, led to ugly June quarters for most. Certain industries, such as commercial aerospace, have yet to recover. Yet by the fourth quarter most markets had returned to life, and balance sheets were for many firms not only looking better sequentially, but even year-over-year.

IDENTCO Advertisement
TOOLING
Engineering a Competitive Made in USA Solution
Backend processes such as routing and coating can be optimized for cost savings. by DAVE McADEN
There is no question a number of countries have manufacturing costs lower than the US. At first glance, the cost differential may make outsourcing in those regions the best solution. When the total costs of logistics, transit time, flexibility and quality of communication are considered, however, the cost differential of a Made in USA solution vs. an offshore or nearshore solution can be small. The engineering team at Electronic Design & Manufacturing, a regional electronics manufacturing services (EMS) provider in Lynchburg, VA, has worked to level that playing field even more.

The engineering analysis starts by mapping the process flow and evaluating the cost drivers in the assembly process. While this level of analysis is routine for high-volume, dedicated line projects within the EMS industry, it isn’t always done thoroughly in midrange projects. This typically happens because companies building those projects lack the engineering resources necessary to develop cost-effective custom automation solutions.

SCREEN printing
One for All
Precision mass-alignment of singulated substrates.
DISCUSSION AROUND SMALLER devices, complex designs and manufacturing challenges as a result of miniaturization: a never-ending story, isn’t it? Truth is, just when it appears the industry has hit a wall in terms of capability, we find a way forward. Yes, miniaturization is rolling on, and the industry continues to overcome perceived obstacles, this time enabling a higher accuracy approach to mass processing of singulated substrates.

Several years ago, the general thinking was components would keep getting smaller. The prevailing view was that by this time, the metric 03015 and the metric 0201 would be working their way into mainstream production. Although the processes to accommodate these small devices have long since been developed, it will likely be some time before they appear on a majority of BoMs. What is happening, though, is manufacturers are trying to eek out slightly more with standard 01005s by placing them closer together, creating a much narrower gap from the edge of one component to the edge of the next. (See “Screen Printing,” December 2020.) These narrow gap designs – which today see pitches of approximately 100µm with 75µm on the horizon – in combination with the other elements of miniaturization require much tighter alignment tolerances in the stencil printing to ensure solder paste hits the pad target.

Powell-Mucha Consulting, Inc. Advertisement
DEFECT OF THE MONTH
Solder Squishing
When BGAs move during reflow, intermittent shorts can result.
THIS MONTH WE look at ball grid array (BGA) opens and solder compression. Intermittent joints and shorts can be caused by package warpage at elevated temperatures. Hence the interest in lowering soldering temperatures commonly used for SAC alloys.
FIGURE 1 was part of an experiment to chart the movement of a BGA package during reflow soldering. Using our reflow simulation, we can see solder ball compression by the package laminate in the image. In many of our video experiments, we see package warpage causes solder shorts and open connections during second reflow. Intermittent open connections have been experienced on double-sided reflow and package rework of adjacent parts. This procedure has been helpful to demonstrate why and how this problem can exist, particularly with smaller packages.
close view of compressed solder balls
Figure 1. The BGA solder balls compressed during reflow. A modified reflow process might be needed.
EOS/ESD Association, Inc. Advertisement
Off The Shelf
off the shelf typography
Machines Materials Tools Systems Software
eCadStar release 2021.0
Zuken eCadStar 2021
eCadStar release 2021.0 includes 3-D creepage safety checks in PCB design editor, improved bus management and sheet connector cross-references in schematic editor and enhanced scripting in COM interface. Creepage safety checking functionality, for power supply design, analyzes electrical safety of nets and defined regions of PCB design, measuring distance between electrical items across insulating surface in 3-D (according to standards like IEC-62368). Creepage rules are user-controlled in common constraint browser in both schematic and PCB design editor. SPICE controller provides integrated solution for analog circuits simulation.
Zuken
tool that helps helps designers place antennas in a wireless design
Antenova Antenna Placement Tool
Antenna Placement Tool helps designers place antennas in a wireless design. Displays optimum position for embedded antennas on PCB, depending on dimensions of PCB and specifications of antennas. Places each antenna on PCB in best location for signal strength. Can be used for up to three antennas from different categories or a pair of antennas in a diversity configuration. Displays keep-out area adjacent to antenna.
Antenova
HDO6000B oscilloscope
Teledyne LeCroy HDO6000B
HDO6000B oscilloscope integrates waveform generation and spectrum analysis with 12-bit res and 15.6″ display. Brings together high sample rate 12-bit ADCs, high signal-to-noise amplifiers and low-noise system architecture. Sample rate of 10GS/s and memory up to 250 Megapoints. 15.6″ 1920 x 1080 display. Optional internal function generator creates standard and arbitrary waveforms. Comes in bandwidths of 350MHz, 500MHz and 1GHz.
Teledyne LeCroy
Off The Shelf
off the shelf typography
Machines Materials Tools Systems Software
Forte Max fluid dispenser
Asymtek Forte Max
Forte Max fluid dispenser offers dual-valve jetting in two modes and patented, real-time correction to accommodate skewed parts. Designed for high volume. Dispenses from two identical or different valves using a single set of hardware. In one configuration, two high-frequency IntelliJets dispense fluid simultaneously for applications with multi-up, panelized, or patterned parts with consistent spacing. In a second configuration, two different fluids are dispensed on the same part from two different valves, such as for dam-and-fill encapsulation.
Nordson Electronics Solutions
manual stencil printer
LPKF ProtoPrint S4
ProtoPrint S4 is a manual stencil printer suitable for single-sided and double-sided printing of PCB prototypes and low volumes. Has integrated size-adjustable clamping frame; can use polyimide film or stainless steel stencils. Supports mounting of tiny SMDs on prototype boards. Components are removed from component trays or tape feeders with manual pick-and-place system, guided to appropriate places above PCB with ergonomically formed placement head, and placed with one hand. Has automated nozzle changer with six nozzles and intuitive GUI. Is equipped with CAD editor for nearly all CAD systems.
LPKF
FlyPOD module
Seica FlyPOD
FlyPOD module connects multiple hardware resources to mini fixture installed on flying probe. Is deployed for on-board programming, as boundary scan test interface or as communication interface, e.g., CAN, I2C, etc. Automatic flying prober with four or eight probes with FlyPOD option can be integrated into high-volume automatic production line; integration of up to two FlyPODs on different heads for OBP programming, boundary scan, CAN communication and other purposes. Fixture with min. step of 1.27mm (5 x 5 grid). Max. number of contacts: 14. DUT provides a termination of test points connected to device to be programmed. Mini-fixture is plug-and-play type and will be manufactured according to configuration in use.
Seica
Topline Advertisement
Rush PCB Marketplace Ad
PCB 4 Less advertisement
Overnite Protos advertisement
PCB UPdate Advertisement
Circuits Assembly Advertisement
French Advertisement
Technical Abstracts
In Case You Missed It
Reliability
“Electrochemical Failures as a Function of Flux Volume under Bottom Terminated Components”

Authors: Mark McMeen

Abstract: The activity of flux residue changes when trapped under a low-profile leadless or bottom-terminated component. There are three factors to consider: 1) Standoff gap: lower-standoff gaps block outgassing channels. Low-standoff gaps change the nature of the flux residue by leaving behind flux activators, solvents, and functional additives that normally would be outgassed from the residue; 2) Narrow pitch: miniaturized components have a decreased distance between conductors of opposite polarity. There is a higher potential to bridge conductors with flux residue; 3) Cubic volume of flux: increased I/O in combination with thermal lugs creates a higher cubic volume of flux left under the bottom termination. High flux volumes can block outgassing channels and bridge conductors.

Pulsonix Advertisement
Printed Circuit Design & Fab Circuits Assembly logo
Thanks for reading our June 2021 issue!