Has it ever occurred to you that all the kitchen appliance or medical devices that you use today, what drives them? What brings electronic equipment to life? The answer to this is the Printed Circuit Board.
From being the core driver of industrial automation to being used as a treatment, monitoring, and diagnostic devices in the healthcare industry, PCB has its application across several industries, making our lives easier.
Have you ever placed a PCB in your hand and questioned yourself, how do all these components are placed in such a neat manner?
Placing here refers to the mounting of the components on the Printed Circuit Board. There are multiple approaches by which the components are mounted on a PCB. One such approach is Surface Mounted Technology. As the name suggests, in the SMT, the circuit components are directly mounted on the PCB, resulting in a surface mounted device, hence the name. An alternative to the soldering holes, this approach leads in a more sturdy built of PCB. SMT offers the advantage of handling smaller components with an enhanced component density. With the increasing demand for miniaturization, SMT technology is the retort for creating highly integrated circuits.
The machine which this technology is used to mount components on the board is the SMT machine. Also known as the pick and place machine, SMT machines are in high demand because of their ability to place components with maximum accuracy and deliver versatile builds as the complexity and variety of components increases without compromising on the quality. But purchasing the right SMT Machine is not an easy feat. You have to be very observant and keep these things in mind before you are buying an SMT machine for your PCB fabrication:
Since the pick and place machines are used for light to medium nature of the operation, make sure that the one you purchase can handle a broad range of component sizes without resulting in any complication while setting up and testing the functionality.
Depending upon your production volume and size restrictions, the type of feeder will also be different. There are different feeders made my leading automobile and electronics brands such as Yamaha SMT feeder, Panasonic SMT feeder, etc.
Aside from the physical features, it is essential that the soft features are also inspected. The software interface is one of the most crucial aspects of an SMT machine, which should be selected so that it optimizes the performance, provides flexibility and maximizes the ease of use. Check whether or not the pick and place machine is available on site and is factory trained? Will the vendor be able to provide online support and perform a remote diagnostics? Will you be charged extra for the updates in the software?
Verify before purchasing that the machine is manufactured adhering to the quality and safety standards. To stay compliant with the rules and regulation, make sure the processing is legal and of supreme quality.
A pick and place machine is a rather expensive investment, and hence, one must thoroughly inspect the machine to make sure that it will efficiently serve the purpose.