Production

Direct Imaging system platform launched for QTA PCB production

8th September 2020
Lanna Cooper

Provider of Direct Imaging (DI) systems for PCB manufacturing and adjacent markets, Limata has introduced the X1000, a flexible cost efficient system platform for dry-film patterning and solder mask imaging designed for PCB manufacturers with quick turnaround (QTA) production configurations.

The X1000 can be configured as an affordable entry-level solution that provides PCB manufacturers with a modular and scalable system platform that can be quickly upgraded in-place within just a few hours.

Manufacturers can thus start with a low cost single-head machine and, as their volumes increase, seamlessly ramp up capacity to up to 3 heads with 18 simultaneously working laser diode sources.

The high end model, the X1000HR achieves a resolution of 8µm line and 12µm space that meets the stringent demands of IC substrate and MSAP process production and makes fine line printing affordable for small series production.

Auto-calibration

Accuracy and reliability are key in high precision PCB fabrication. A change in position or room climate can easily affect the accuracy of critical components, for example the power of the laser or position of the laser beams, and thus necessitate re-calibration and down time.

To address this issue, Limata has developed an integrated auto-calibration system that eliminates manual adjustments and resulting production down times.

Faster solder mask imaging

Like all X-series system platforms from Limata, the X1000 gives manufacturers cost-effective access to Limata’s innovative LUVIR technology for rapid Solder Mask (SM) direct imaging. This reduces the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) by up to 40% compared to competing systems. LUVIR, a proprietary technology of Limata, slashes existing Ultra-Violet (UV) power requirements that have made today's solder mask imaging slow and expensive.

By utilising both UV and infrared (IR) lasers, this technology significantly lowers UV power consumption, which reduces imaging cycle times and increases production throughput. LUVIR is compatible with all conventional solder mask ink types and colours, achieving ionic contamination ('bleeding') values.

"With the X1000, we provide QTA PCB manufacturers easy and affordable access to the benefits of LUVIR," said Matthias Nagel, CTO of Limata. "These benefits include unmatched speed, high resolution and profitability in high mix production runs."

The X1000 has the industry-wide smallest operational footprint enabling it to neatly fit into clean rooms and runs efficiently on single-phase power, making it a very compact, power-efficient unit.

Seamless automation

For high volume manufacturers wishing to streamline and update their manufacturing processes with automation features, the X1000A model enables a fully automated and integrated inline LDI system, which can be installed in a single or twin configuration.

In combination with LUVIR, the twin-set configuration X1000A-Twin delivers throughput of up to 180 exposures per hour on conventional solder mask inks such as Taiyo PSR-4000 BN or AM03TS.    

As a fully-integrated system from a single vendor, the X1000A adds seamless automation without the headaches of dealing with multiple suppliers.

The low starting price of the X1000 system platformremoves the financial entry-barrier for quick-turn-around manufacturers wanting to transition from mask/film and to invest in a digital system solution for solder mask direct imaging.

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