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Precise Conformal Coating Dispensers Increase Yields for Automotive PCB Supplier

A Success Story

9 August 2019

By Muge Deniz Meiller

An automotive supplier needed a less time-consuming, less hazardous, and more precise way to selectively apply conformal coatings to densely populated printed circuits boards (PCBs). The previous method required diluting the fluid before application. This added time while creating some safety and environmental concerns.

Japan-based Nordson EFD application specialists, Katsunori Sei and Tomoyuki Tabe, found the right solution to eliminate unnecessary steps and produce a safer, more controlled process for higher throughput yields.

Here are a few more details about this application.

Fluids Used

HumiSeal® conformal coatings

Application Requirements 

    • Effective coating to waterproof and prevent corrosion and oxidation of vital electronic components
    • Precise deposit pattern definition on densely populated PCBs
    • No contamination of other parts of the board that could lead to product failure
    • Precise deposit pattern definition on densely populated PCBs
    • Reduce volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions by eliminating the need to dilute fluid
    • Increase productivity by eliminating unnecessary steps

    Previous Process

    The automotive supplier had been using a film coater to selectively apply conformal coatings. The applicator required diluting the fluid with solvent prior to application. This introduced quite a few production challenges.

    Issues with Previous Process

    Diluting the conformal coating added an unnecessary step to the process, therefore impacting the rate of units produced per hour. Thinning the fluid also affected its flow characteristics, leading to over-deposits onto areas where conformal coating should not go. This required the use of masking tape to prevent fluid from migrating. There were also concerns about the integrity of the coating to effectively protect the board and prevent driving accidents.

    More importantly, using chemicals to dilute the fluid increased operator health and safety risks by increasing VOC emissions. It also introduced potentially harmful contaminants to the environment. VOC emissions are highly regulated in some countries and violations can lead to hefty fines.

    Solutions


    Results

    Replacing the film coater with Nordson EFD’s PICO Pµlse jet valve allowed the automotive manufacturer to apply the exact amount of conformal coating needed without diluting the fluid first. This not only eliminated a step, it also eliminated the operator and environmental safety concerns the dilution process had introduced.

    The piezoelectric PICO Pµlse jet valve provided such precise dispensing control that it also eliminated the need to apply masking tape to prevent the material from migrating. The ability to dispense into narrow, hard-to-reach areas at high speeds up to 1000Hz (cycles per second) allowed the manufacturer to produce a greater number of units per hour.

    Mounting the jet valve on EFD’s vision-guided 3-axis EV dispensing robot provided the exact amount of fluid in the exact location required on the PCB. This led to less voids in the dispensing area, which increased first pass yields. Watch this video to see a live demonstration.

    Reduced fluid waste, greater process control, and higher throughput yields are just a few benefits the automotive supplier gained with the new jet valve and robot system from Nordson EFD.

    A few other benefits included the jet valve’s tool-free latch for fast, easy maintenance and its variable stroke for greater dispensing control. Combined with the vision-guided EV automated dispensing system with specialized dispensing software, the customer achieved considerable equipment cost savings compared to larger, specialized systems.

    Related Applications

    • Electronic control units (ECUs)
    • Body control modules (BCMs)
    • Keyless entry systems
    • Lithium-Ion battery controllers (LBCs)

    Learn more about Nordson EFD fluid dispensing solutions in our Automotive Application Guide. Watch more dispensing videos in our Automotive Video Playlist.

    Do you have a question about our automotive assembly equipment? Don’t hesitate to contact us at info@nordsonefd.com.

    Muge Deniz MeillerAbout Muge Deniz Meiller

    Muge Deniz Meiller is a Global Market Development Manager at Nordson EFD. She concentrates on solidifying and growing relevant opportunities for EFD in the automotive, particularly the electric vehicle market. Muge has more than 9 years of product and market management experience. She joined Nordson EFD in 2018.

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