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X-ray inspection machine debuts at productronica

1st November 2019
Mick Elliott

A compact, lightweight, inline 3D-CT automated X-ray inspection machine, the 3Xi-M110, for inspection of printed circuit board assemblies (PCBAs) will be demonstrated at productronica in Munich (November 12-15) by Saki Corporation. The 3Xi-M110 reduces the dose and exposure to X-rays during inspection and features new soldering quality inspection functions for PCB assembly applications.

This X-ray inspection system ensures the quality of hidden solder joints for bottom-electrode packages, such as BGAs, LGAs, and QFNs, which are found in advanced embedded devices, telecommunications, and automotive products.

Saki's Planar Computed Tomography (PCT) provides precise volumetric measurements and shape reconstruction to find voids, head-in-pillow (HiP), and other defects that are extremely difficult to identify.

The 3Xi-M110 hardware platform is 1,380mm wide and weighs 3,100kg, making it 40% lighter and reducing its footprint by 25% over its predecessor. Manufacturing floorspace is saved, it's easy to install, and production-line operation is significantly improved.

Although the cast iron frame is lighter in weight, it maintains the rigidity needed for stable operation and accuracy, while the imaging range has been optimised to handle board sizes up to 360 x 330mm (W x L).

For larger 360 x 510mm (W x L) boards, 2-step image capture is available.

The 3Xi-M110 delivers speed and accuracy by utilising a double motor-driven system equipped with a high-precision linear scale manufactured by Magnescale to optimise power and precision.

An enhanced PCT technology algorithm improves image capture speed by 30%, reducing production-line takt time.

One of the most significant features of the new system is Saki's X-ray tube, which can reduce X-ray exposure up to 70% by powering on the X-rays only at the moment of image capture.

An exposure dose simulator allows the user to monitor the radiation dose.

Based on that information, the method and magnification for releasing the X-rays can be set.

The new X-ray tube design does not require periodic maintenance or spare parts, and the built-in monitoring system reports when the tube needs replacing. "In the automotive and communications industries, where quality assurance is important, the effectiveness of high-precision, high-quality PCB X-ray inspection has become critical," said Masahide Iino, director and head of the sales division of Saki Corporation.

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