Partnering with the industry's foremost technology leaders
For over a decade, Universal Instruments' Advanced Process Laboratory has been conducting focused research with the goal of generating applicable knowledge for specific product development and manufacturing processes. This research is funded by a consortium of companies that share the results. Each year the laboratory chooses a set of relevant projects on current and emerging technologies based on member input and conducts analytical and experimental research on these. Manufacturing-relevant materials, process and reliability studies are conducted by a team of staff scientists, professors, post-doctoral students, consultants, and graduate students. Past projects have included topics such as ultra-fine pitch, BGA, CSP, flip chip, PCB technologies, optoelectronics packaging, and assembly for thermal management.
Results are disseminated in research reports posted on a protected website, as well as at three major on-site meetings each year. In addition, hundreds of employees of member companies worldwide attend web casts of the same presentations at times scheduled for Europe, Asia, and America, respectively. Member companies are also invited to participate in the research, and some keep residents in the laboratory for periods ranging from days to years.
The consortium has over 30 members representing leading companies in the electronics assembly industry. Major topics include:
- PCB Damage
- Pad Cratering
- Solder Pad Finish Issues
- Thermal Cycling Data & Assessment of Life
- Drop, Vibration, and Cyclic Bending
- Acceleration of Aging
- Combined Loading
- Whiskers & Conformal Coatings
- Thermal Interface Assembly & Reliability
- Assembly and Rework/Repair
- Component Underfilling & Edge/Corner Bonding
The overall knowledge and understanding generated is intended to be applied by member companies in their business. The Laboratory employs it by conducting design, turnkey process development, process audits and training, and root cause failure analysis for individual customers.