4 Important PCB Inspections for Accuracy

June 12, 2017 by - Fast pcb prototype, Pcb prototype service, Small batch pcb

Turnkey pcb assembly

Printed circuit boards are a part of the inner workings of many technological devices. However, even with the best design and prototype assembly service, problems and mistakes can occur. Sometimes these mistakes are caught on the line and corrected, but sometimes they make it into the consumer?s house. This results in damaged or poorly working electronic items. To prevent an excess of circuit board assembly problems, advanced PCB inspection services are needed. The PCB inspection should include the following points.

Printing inspections
Problems can arise within the printing process. Problems caused by printing technique account for 70% of all surface assembly quality issues without consideration of PCB design or quality of components and printed boards. To complete a proper PCB inspection of the printing process, it is important to evaluate all of these areas. When a problem with the printing occurs, the assembly line is informed to use incorrect parts and to install the circuit board incorrectly. This can lead to an entire batch of poorly produced circuit boards.

Speed inspections
PCB fabrication is a much quicker process than it once was. The advent of machine assembly for any size orders means that shops can assembly PCBs in a fraction of the time it would normally take for hand placement. In fact, some PCB assemblers have a standard turn time of 5 days or less, which is 75% faster than the industry average. Although advantageous to speed, this does mean an increase in assembly line inspections. While humans tend to make errors in production, they often result in lower numbers. A human might only make one mistake per thousands of PCB assemblies. A PCB assembly line with an incorrect legend could make entire batches of thousands of PCBs incorrectly.

Layer production inspections
There are many different levels of PCBs. More advanced of circuit boards have a greater number of layers, while small batch PCBs tend to have fewer layers. Inspections within the layer assembly look for the appropriate number of layers in the circuit board. The most common multilayer boards are 4 layers, 6 layers, 8 layers, and 10 layers. However, the total number of layers that can be manufactured can exceed over 42 layers. These types of boards are used in extremely complex electronic circuits. The more layers that a printed circuit board has, the more PCB inspections that will likely require for improved accuracy.

Temperature inspections
Temperature can easily and quickly ruin electronic devices. This is why we keep our mobile devices out of direct sunlight. It is why we place cooling fans in large data and IT centers. When temperatures are too high, the electronics, and specifically the PCB can overheat. This can erase data and ruin the entire device. PCB inspections should also include temperature inspections. This simply means randomly testing for PCB temperatures. Ensure that the assembly warehouse and the final product are within the recommended temperature ranges.

PCB inspections are an important part of the printed circuit board assembly process. Although assembly lines generally produce quality PCBs, problems can and do occur. This can result in an entire line of PCBs or electronic devices not working, or in a couple of faulty items. PCB inspections can reduce the number of faulty devices within an assembly line. PCB inspections should specifically include temperature checks, PCB layer inspections, and printing and legend views.

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