(September 10, 2009) — Electronics assemblers need to inspect assemblies for everything from polarity errors to component counterfeiting and beyond. The vision systems, digital microscopes, test services, automatic optical inspection (AOI) offerings, and other inspection products featured here were recently released by Soldertec Global, Marantz Business Electronics and Nutek, GOEPEL electronics, Sonoscan’s SonoLab, Seika, Microscan, the SharpVue division of Aven, and Extech Instruments.
Black Top Test for Detecting Counterfeit Parts
All blacktopped counterfeit ICs are reportedly detectable through the “Ultimate” Black Top Test service. This service uses the industry-standard IDEA-STD-1010-A and then adds greater depth to the testing by looking at higher magnification and adding supplementary tests using advanced techniques. The tests are designed to identify the remarking, expose the fraud, and mitigate counterfeit component risk. Methods for detecting these counterfeit components are kept confidential; however, the test regime involves 25 tests and is completed in approximately one day. This depth of testing enables the laboratory to pick up all signs of prior use and remarking, with many of the techniques supporting each other and reaffirming earlier suspicions. If a suspect part is found and confirmation is required, the part can be de-capped and the die examined in detail. Soldertec Global, www.soldertec.com.
Automated Inspection Island
A fully automatic off-line inspection operation, the Marantz Inspection Island was developed to deliver completely automated PCB handling. Available on new and existing iSpector models, the technology is equipped to serve multiple lines, eliminating the PCB load/unload step. It is compatible with Marantz’ Catch process control system. The Inspection Island avoids the need for operators to classify inspection results on the machine since the repair and traceability software allows post-processing of defects. Users can choose classification on-the-fly through manual intervention. The compatible iSpector 350 and 650 AOI system models feature Marantz’ true-24-bit color imaging and 3D Solder Meniscus profiling. The technology is deployed across the iSpector range in conjunction with through the lens, dual on axis lighting and angled RGB. Marantz Business Electronics, in partnership with Nutek, www.marantz.com/bus/eu.
Desktop AOI with Extended Inspection Area
The desktop AOI system OptiCon SmartLine is now able to inspect PCBs up to a maximum board size of 400 × 390 mm. The extension has not affected the compact system design and the complete PC integration has been retained. The OptiCon SmartLine is designed as desktop system for small-volume manufacturing to be used as an offline test station or repair station. Its camera-based imaging unit features a custom telecentric lens and flexible illumination of different colors and directions. All common inspection tasks for PCBs can be undertaken with the system. The PC is completely integrated into the main chassis, thus only monitor and keyboard need be connected to work with the system. For this reason, it can be used at a range of positions in the production process. Based on Extended Colour Technology, the camera enables high-contrast recordings as well as high-resolution color images. They are available for color test tasks and color representation of detected faults at the repair station. Extended Colour Technology is available for all OptiCon AOI systems, and can be upgraded in existing installations. GOEPEL electronic, www.goepel.com.
Acoustic Microscope Imaging of Stacked Die
This service provides greatly enhanced acoustic microscope imaging of stacked die assemblies, using proprietary software that accurately images die stacks for internal defect analysis. It can assign a defect or other feature to a specific layer within the stack. This software is used with the company’s C-SAM hardware by applications engineers. SonoLab personnel have been able to image all of the interfaces in a stack of eight die, though imaging that large of a stack may not be feasible in every case. Imaging is generally more successful when SonoLab personnel have good data about the dimensions and geometry of the stack. Ultrasound pulsed into the stack by the C-SAM system’s transducer is reflected from a large number of internal interfaces. If there are eight die, then there are at least 17 interfaces and numerous multiple reflections. The software can sort out the right echoes and provide the acoustic imaging accuracy that lets manufacturers build high reliability into their die stacks. IC designers, IC packaging engineers, semiconductor failure analysis labs, and semiconductor manufacturing engineers are included in the target customer base. Sonoscan Inc., SonoLab division, manager Ray Thomas, [email protected], www.sonoscan.com.
Link Conveyor Systems
Young Jin conveyors for SPI and AOI are now available. YJ Link’s SPI NG/Good Buffer is designed to stack not good (NG) PCBs and transfer good PCBs to the next process using first in/first out (FIFO). Features include PCB shock-free and noncontact power transmission, RS-232C interface with SPI, and NG PCB anti-touch verification. This method provides increased line efficiency and requires minimal space for equipment. Using the SPI NG/Good Buffer, there is no need to filter NG PCBs and SPI operates normally, even during NG PCB verification. YJ Link’s AOI NG Buffer stacks NG PCBs and pushes good PCBs to the next AOI inspection process. This system also features a PCB shock-free and noncontact power transmission. Both systems feature a SMEMA interface, a slim and round design, adjustable stacking, and more. Seika Machinery Inc., www.seikausa.com.
Double-sided In-line THT Inspection
The OptiCon TurboLine AOI system efficiently inspects through hole technology (THT) assemblies in-line. The system allows inspection of the component side up to 85-cm placement height. It can applied before and after the soldering process, in particular for the inspection of power assemblies, checking polarity and electrolytic capacitors. Because of an integrated inspection module, it is possible to inspect solder joints at the board bottom side without turning the PCB. Therefore, top and bottom side inspection can be executed in one system or separated devices. The OptiCon TurboLine provides a conveyor with accumulator roller principle as well as low-floor return conveyor for empty carriers, especially for the production of large PCBs. Test generation with the software OptiCon PILOT is reportedly fast and versatile for various job sizes. GOEPEL electronic, www.goepel.com.
Ethernet Machine Vision
The Visionscape GigE Solution is a comprehensive machine vision solution for Gigabit Ethernet networks, with Visionscape machine vision software, multiple GigE cameras, and extensive machine vision lighting range of NERLITE lighting solutions. Components range from a single camera system to an eight-camera application. The Visionscape brand of machine vision hardware and software offers automated technical inspection, gauging, and measurement capabilities. PC-based Gigabit Ethernet is cost-effective, leveraging standard network components such as cabling switches and interface cards. Further cost savings are achieved by linking up to eight GigE cameras together onto one system. Microscan, www.microscan.com.
The iVue and iScope digital microscopes combine image capture, measurement, annotation, and networking capability without external software or hardware. The microscopes allow precision optical analysis and image-sharing in a plug-and-go format. Each instrument is an advanced video inspection system, while the iScope enlarges from 10 to 44× and has screen magnification up to 166×. They combine a 3-megapixel camera and touch-screen virtual keyboard for annotation and measurement. No laptop or desktop PC is needed. Images are captured directly to a USB stick or internal hard drive. Touch-screen commands insert moveable, fully customizable text boxes. Laser pointer highlights locations on viewed objects. LAN connectivity and a Wi-Fi card allow team viewing and annotation. Brightness controls on a patented LED lighting system provide custom illumination for each of four quadrants on the iScope and three quadrants on the iVue. Images are instantly saved and manipulated on-screen. The iVue's tilting head provides a top-down view as well as an angled view for increased depth of field. The iScope has a 45° fixed 3D viewer option that rotates for 360° views without moving the object being examined. Each offers numerous measurement options in various orientations without requiring additional software. Precise distances between points or geometries are calculated on-screen and saved when an image is captured. A "snap" tool automatically finds corners and edges for accurate measurement. Each quadrant has individual angle and height adjustments, as well as separate horizontal plane controls to provide shadowing when needed. The iVue and iScope are useful for inspecting circuit boards, welds, tubes, hoses, precision parts and other manufactured products in a quality control lab or on the assembly floor. Users can detect and document gaps, hairline cracks, fractures or other microscopic defects. SharpVue's systems allow immediate team collaboration on the 12″ screen or via networked units. They enable material documentation for process conformance, as well as database archiving for continuous quality improvement, documentation, and ISO certification. In research applications, the two instruments can evaluate prototypes, work in scientific studies and cataloging, and be used in educational settings, among other uses. Users can prepare presentation slides and illustrations for training manuals or publications. For lecture demonstrations, each unit's VGA output allows interfacing to a projector or large monitor. The SharpVue division of Aven Inc., www.sharpvue.com
BGA Inspection Lens
HIROX’s MX-BGAZ II lens is designed for easy and accurate BGA exterior observation. This BGA lens allows ball joints to be observed non-destructively. A 3D optical rotary ring enables 3D observation. The MX-BGAZ II allows inspection of the BGA ball’s upper and lower joints by changing the observation angle through the optical rotary ring. This lens incorporates special hardware, such as a prism tip with lighting and a cushion mechanism to ensure comfortable observation. It can help identify overheating, oxidation, air foam formation, and their causes. This information is useful in reviewing the temperature profiles. Exterior observation allows for defect analysis of BGA mounting substrates. The HIROX system was optimized for the characteristics of the imaging sensor: a flat, 2D array with a known readout rate, response curve, pixel size, etc. The BGA inspection system is capable of up to 180× magnification. The system features a spring-loaded lens tip to protect samples, and features a highly configurable and flexible lineup of lenses and peripheral devices. Seika Machinery Inc., www.seikausa.com.
A module for angled-view inspection in AOI, Chameleon generates high-quality field of view at a 45° angle. The orthogonal camera’s entire inspection area is covered. Images can be captured from any angle position in 1° steps. Fault detection also increases in critical situations on PCBs. Various illumination variants are combined with intelligent inspection functions for maximum fault coverage at minimal false-call rate. The angle viewing is available for the OptiCon BasicLine stand-alone AOI system as well as the in-line systems OptiCon AdvancedLine and OptiCon TurboLine. GOEPEL electronic, www.goepel.com.
Digital Mini Microscope and Camera
The model MC108 mini microscope couples a digital camera with microscope optics: optical zoom from 7 to 27× and a 4× digital zoom, effectively providing up to 108× total magnification capability. It is compact and weighs 2.5 oz, suiting portable use. It displays images on a 1.8″ TFT color LCD screen or on a remote PC monitor in real-time via USB. The digital mini microscope is being used in diverse applications such as printed circuit board and soldering inspection. The optics work with a 300,000 pixel CMOS photosensor that captures crisp images that are brightened by built-in, adjustable LED illumination (4 white LEDs). On-board menus permit a user to select five image effect modes: normal, gray, inverse, embossed, and a useful dual-window view that simultaneously displays a magnified image next to the original, unmagnified image. On-board memory stores up to 60 JPEGs at 320 × 240 pixel resolution. The Extech MC108’s software simplifies image download, upload transfers via USB2.0 connectivity and permits full control of the digital mini microscope through your computer with real-time viewing and capture, zoom in/out controls and access to all menus and settings. Onscreen magnification metrics and a reference ruler display add comparison and analysis capabilities. The microscope comes with stand, 3 AAA Ni-MH rechargeable batteries, 100 to 240VAC (50/60Hz) adaptor/charger, Windows-compatible software, mini USB cable, cleaning cloth, and wrist strap. Extech Instruments, a subsidiary of FLIR Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: FLIR), www.extech.com/instruments.
Digital Microscopes with 16-bit Resolution
The KEYENCE VHX-600 Generation II digital microscope now features 16-bit imaging resolution, increasing visibility of subtle color differences and areas that were previously too dark or bright. The brightness range has been increased from the previous 256 levels to 65,536 levels. The 3CCD color clarity has improved from 16 million to over 2.8 trillion colors. With the High Dynamic Range function (HDR), the graphic engine creates images in 16-bit gradation through the acquisition of RGB data from each pixel. The microscope uses the company’s advanced sensor technology in the DOUBLE'R automatic lens/zoom recognition system. The VHX can recognize in real time which lens is mounted to the camera, as well as the current magnification being viewed. Calibration is automatically adjusted every time the magnification is changed. Depth of field is reportedly 20× greater than conventional microscopes. The 3CCD Handheld Camera includes a pixel-shift actuator, achieving observation up to 54 million pixel resolution. A flicker-free progressive scan method allows texture expression and color reproduction similar to observation with the naked eye. Various high-resolution, RZ optical design zoom lenses, with up to 5000x magnification, are available. Targets can be freely observed with the camera/lens unit either handheld or mounted in the multi-angle viewing stand without manipulating the target. Through simple mouse operations, the VHX-600 Generation II performs real-time, on-screen measurement of the distance, radius, angle and area of the target. Keyence Corporation of America, www.keyence.com/PRVH62.