June 2009 Issue Print E-mail
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  • Industry Models
    What We Can Learn from Singapore
    A tour of seven facilities in the city-state opens the author’s eyes to an emerging government-industry infrastructure for responding to continually changing market conditions and business needs.
    By Susan Mucha

  • Cover Story
    BGA Reballing Reliability
    During solder ball removal, a manual method using wicking braid resulted in fewer thermal stresses than would be encountered with a flowing solder bath. But a robust nickel layer on the component provides a very effective barrier against copper dissolution during the latter.
    By Ray Cirimele

  • Alternative Energies
    Cell Efficiency is Key to Success of Photovoltaics
    Unlike semiconductors, there appear to be no technical barriers to the acceptance of new PV technologies. Photovoltaics will be governed more by economics than by any performance specifications, and the economics of these devices depend on little more than manufacturing cost and efficiency.
    By Alain Harrus and Jim Handy

  • Reflow Profiling
    On the Use of 3 Thermocouples to Verify a PCB Profile During Reflow
    By simulating changes to the oven – performed by altering belt speeds and a temperature zone from the baseline profile – evidence shows that by putting tight specifications on the two response variables for the temperature profiles of the three T/Cs located on the surface of the laminate’s leading edge, one can effectively verify the board’s characterization profiles are still within specification.
    By Daryl L. Santos, Arun Ramasubramanian and Laurence A. Harvilchuck




  • Tech Tips
    Giving fine-pitch a wedgie.
    American Competitiveness Institute



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On the Cover: A Pb-free flowing solder bath is expected to cause copper dissolution, but the nickel layer on some BGAs prevents solder from leaching.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 16 June 2009 10:14


Eastern-US: China’s New Competitor?

Parity emerges among EMS Factories from Asia, Mexico and the US.

For the first time in years we see parity in the Eastern US among EMS factories from Asia, Mexico and the US. This EMS market condition will permit American OEMs (the EMS industry refers to OEMs as customers) to have more EMS pathways to choose from. Now more than ever, such EMS assignments will require deeper investigation relating to the OEMs’ evaluation of manufacturing strategies.

The Human Touch

For those who count on the electronics industry for big feats, it’s been a remarkable couple of years.



Advances in Concentration Monitoring and Closed-Loop Control

Contaminated bath water skews refractive index results. New technology can accurately measure aqueous cleaning agent concentration.

Circuits Disassembly: Materials Characterization and Failure Analysis

A systematic approach to nonconventional methods of encapsulant removal.





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