Europlacer freeform feeder wins Pick & Place Accessories NPI Award

27th January 2023
Sheryl Miles

Europlacer has taken the top slot in the placement equipment Accessory Technologies category for its Intelligent Freeform Feeder at the prestigious Circuits Assembly NPI Awards, presented at the IPC APEX Expo 2023 in San Diego.

The 2023 award presentation took place on Monday 23rd January alongside the APEX Expo conference. Europlacer Americas’ Director of Business Development, Mike Foster, was delighted to be able to receive the award from Circuits Assembly editor Mike Buetow on behalf of the Europlacer engineering development team.

“Our Intelligent Freeform Feeder is a solution that addresses the continuing issue of component shortages,” explains Foster. “These shortages mean that loose components as compatible alternatives to unavailable devices are now increasingly common in SMT production. Many Europlacer customers are already receiving the productivity benefits of the Freeform Feeder as it allows them to feed loose parts into their placement machines without the need to tape or reel.”

The feeder is positioned either on an external zone on the machine or internally on a tray. Advanced component recognition algorithms identify the component supply characteristics including pick angle, position, polarity, and inversion. The system automatically identifies and picks components presented in a top side up orientation and electrically or optically verifies each one for correct value. The machine then performs vision alignment to place them perfectly.

“Not only is this award-winning intelligent feeder an optimum solution when component shortages might interrupt the assembly process, it’s also ideal for NPI prototyping or end of production runs,” adds Foster.

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