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Here’s a Method That’s Helping Manufacturers Meet Conformal Coating Demand

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Each year the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, reveals a dazzling array of impressive products. Self-driving technology, IoT infrastructure, smart home tech, and wireless devices continue to top the list of diverse product offerings and categories. As the range of consumer products expands, manufacturers are facing significant competitive pressure to accommodate demand and increase profit.

Many new products are designed to work in diverse indoor and outdoor environments where they are exposed to moisture, dust, and extreme temperature changes. Exposure to these environmental factors, especially moisture and dust, can cause damage that affects performance. That’s where conformal coating comes in. Conformal coating, historically used in a narrower segment of applications, is now a common and critical step in the manufacturing process. This means existing coating processes must be revisited or redesigned, which increasingly calls for automation.

A growing number of manufacturers are moving to fully automated conformal coating line solutions that combine coating, curing, and inspection capabilities with closed-loop process controls to meet demand and deliver consistent product reliability.

Start the Planning Process

Navigating the complexities and benefits of conformal coating line automation can be daunting. Who should you work with, and do you have the breadth of knowledge you need to select the ideal equipment? The path you take will depend on the type of board and application, the desired cycle rate, and the coating material. These factors determine what’s needed in a coating line solution. When you’re ready, our experts can help you select the right layout and equipment to complete your line. For now, here’s a quick overview of the requirements that you’ll want to consider as you start the planning process:

Conformal Coating and Applicators

  • Process controls: fan width, temperature, and flow
  • Fluid delivery methods: atomized, non-atomized, precision jetting
  • Single or multiple applicators: simultaneous, and toggling capabilities


Curing

  • Desired cycle rate
  • Temperature constraints for the board or part
  • Curing mechanism needed


Inspection

  • Ability to verify coating thickness
  • Ability to inspect coated and non-coated areas within defined limits
  • Ability to inspect around fillets
  • Selective bubble detection
  • Ability to inspect the sides of components


Facility Requirements

  • Available floor space
  • Ventilation requirements


Tips for Choosing a Supplier

Selecting the right supplier for your conformal coating process is vital to ensure that you can deliver your products on time, optimize efficiency, and obtain technical support when you need it. 

Working with a single supplier can help you:

  1. Avoid complication and save time. Working with a single supplier eliminates time spent communicating and coordinating between suppliers. Instead, you can focus your efforts on overseeing the process, ensuring the equipment is installed to your requirements, and ramping up production.

  2. Eliminate “finger pointing” between upstream and downstream equipment suppliers when support is needed. This scenario can lead to extended downtime if you have to sort out exactly where an issue lies and who is responsible for addressing it.

  3. Get technical support across the entire line when and where you need it. For the best result, one supplier should be responsible for the entire line. Look for suppliers who offer global technical support in the regions where your business operates. They should also have a long-standing reputation for technical application expertise, prompt response, and long-term product support.


Nordson ASYMTEK’s Panorama Line Solutions are designed to bring the right balance of equipment and process control for optimal conformal coating efficiency, backed by global experts. After speaking with our skilled sales team, you'll be better informed to choose from our full breadth of equipment options and select those that meet your unique application needs.

Interested? Contact us today: asktheexperts@nordsonasymtek.com

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