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First Pick&Place machine test

Submitter: Albert van Duin
Description: The first "real" PCB has been assembled with our new Pick&Place machine, an ADC test board for LOFAR2.0
This board contains about 160 SMD (Surface Mount Device) components ranging in size from SOIC8 (5.2 x 5.1mm) to 0402 resistors and capacitors (1.0 x 0.6mm).
Most of these components are quite difficult to solder manually, it would take the better part of a day to assemble and solder this board by hand.
The P&P machine however, can mount these components automatically using its vision system and the coordinate files generated by the PCB design software.

First solder paste is applied manually to the solder pads using a stencil and a squeegee, this only takes a few minutes, then the PCB is placed in the machine and the placement program is started.
The 160 components are placed in the paste on the PCB in about 20 minutes, but the machine is still running in slow mode to be able to see what's happening.
After placement of the parts the PCB is placed in our vapour phase soldering oven where the solder paste melts at 230 C, and after 25 minutes process and cooling time the finished PCB can be taken out of the oven.
Astron Vapor Phase Oven: http://www.astron.nl/dailyimage/main.php?date=20170410
Copyright: ASTRON
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