ECT’s New Board Marker Probe for Reliable PCB Testing

Innovative features optimized for best performance

ECT adds the next generation board marker probe to its industry proven portfolio of ICT / FCT probes. The BMP-4 incorporates innovative and industry-leading features that result in superior performance, ease of use and maintainability.

ECT’s BMP-4 Board Maker Probe is designed for installation on bare board or loaded board test fixtures. It has been designed to combine ease-of-operation and maintainability with highest performance. The BMP-4 is easy to fixture and facilitates simple scribe tip replacement. The 10 mm diameter allows find pitch probe placement. The BMP-4 is fully adjustable in z-direction. With more than 50,000 cycles before tip replacement and a durable motor, it is the ideal solution for high volumes.

When the tester is equipped with the appropriate electronics and software, the BMP-4 scribes a permanent circle on every “passed” PCB or device tested. Boards that fail the test are not marked. The risk of human error is eliminated in PCB testing and sorting.

When activated, the spring-loaded scribe tip contacts the PCB surface. The 12 V DC motor rotates the scribe in a counter clockwise direction and leaves a .050″ (1.27 mm) circle mark onto the PCB. The probe requires less than 400″ (10 mm) of fixture area when mounted into a threaded hole. It’s designed to mark board areas comprised of bare glass (FR4), solder mask over glass, copper, or bare tinned cooper.

The probe features a full length threaded housing which allows for maximum adjustability in the Z-direction. Spare tip replacement assemblies are available.

Tony DeRosa, Senior Product Manager, comments: “This board marker probe builds on our extensive experience in providing solutions for in-circuit and functional test as well as our operational knowhow to integrate electro-mechanical assemblies. The BMP-4 adds to ECT’s industry proven board marker probe BMP-1 series”.

ECT BMP-4 board marker probes meet the need for cost efficient and highly reliable in-circuit and functional test solutions.

To learn more about the BMP-4 Board Marker Probe, please visit https://shop.ect-cpg.com/product/bmp-4/

Expanding MEMS Test Capabilities in the Chinese Market

Xcerra MEMS Test Cell at SITRI for Barometric Pressure Sensors

Xcerra, with its recognized industry-leading suite of flexible and cost-effective MEMS test cell offerings, announced today that SITRI, the Shanghai Industrial µTechnology Research Institute, has added barometric pressure sensor test and calibration to its test services offering. SITRI extends its MEMS test capabilities, based on an Xcerra Test Cell solution that includes an LTX-Credence Diamond tester, a Multitest InStrip handler and the Multitest InGyro, with the InBaro test module. The flexible and modular MEMS handling system of Multitest facilitates switching form one MEMS stimulus to another using the same base handler.

Whereas the InGyro module provides physical stimulation for inertial sensors, the InBaro supports environmental applications requiring barometric pressure conditions for calibration and testing of MEMS devices. Both set-ups feature a full temperature range from -40°C to +125°C.

The test cell for barometric test enables SITRI to provide multisite, cost efficient, accurate and reliable tri-temperature test for environmental sensors. The InBaro-based system supports very fast switching between various pressure levels, making it possible to efficiently test and calibrate at multiple pressure levels within a single insertion, ensuring fast test times even for comprehensive test cases. It can be upgraded to InHumid, which adds humidity and gas test capability to the barometric component, thereby supporting highly-integrated environmental sensors.

“The Xcerra test cell approach combines the advantages of a completely pre-validated one-stop solution with the flexibility of a modular set-up,” said Gabriela Born, Xcerra Director InMEMS and IoT Products “SITRI strategically leverages this feature to reconfigure the set-up to meet the requirements of new applications.”

To learn more about the Xcerra Test Cell Innovation, please visit http://xcerra.com/tci

Multitest Successfully Introduced New Super Sharp Gemini Kelvin Probes

Seamless switch to higher-yield probes

Multitest recently passed an evaluation of new-super-sharp Gemini Kelvin (GMK) probes. The evaluation took place at an OSAT testing devices for a major customer. Although the customer was not experiencing issues with the original GMK probes, they were encouraged to try the super-sharp probes and saw a measurable improvement in both test yield and probe life. The OSAT plans to order all super-sharp probes going forward to help reduce costs and increase throughput.

As Multitest designed and fabricated finer-pitch probes over the last few years, those probes were made super sharp in order to provide adequate pressure at the contact point with the lower force developed by the smaller springs. The super-sharp probes were released to the field after the standard, rigorous internal testing. They have been in high-volume production test for several years now, and have demonstrated excellent performance.

Since then, Multitest has updated the designs of some probes to have super-sharp tips for applications where it was difficult to maintain low and consistent contact resistance (RC). The super-sharp probes exhibited the anticipated improvement in performance and continue to perform well in these applications, extending the useful life of the probes. Based on internal testing and this field data, Multitest is encouraging customers to make the seamless switch to sharp-tip styles at no increase in cost.

Senior Product Manager Bert Brost says “While the GMK product was doing a good job, we decided to make it better without any incremental cost for the customer. Making it better means increasing the customer’s throughput, increasing the customer’s system run times between cleaning, and increasing the customer’s first pass yields.”

To learn more about the Gemini Kelvin contactor, please visit http://multitest.com/geminikelvin

ECT Interposers for Board to Board Connections

Reliable and non-destructive connections for PCBA assemblies or testing

ECT interposers are industry-proven solutions for connecting and disconnecting boards in a reliable and non-destructive way. Drawing from its extensive portfolio of spring probes, ECT manufactures interposers that fully meet the electrical requirements of a wide variety of applications.

ECT interposers offer a high density, short profile interconnection. ECT offers an extensive catalog of spring probes to meet a range of electrical requirements including low resistance, high current, and signal integrity. These probes can then be mounted directly to a connecting board to housed in plastic, offering versatility in board to board connections, while the compliant aspect of spring probes naturally accommodates the misalignment tolerances often found in board to board interconnect applications.

ECT interposers ensure high cycle life contacts and low and stable contact resistance in a high density contact area. They connect and disconnect simply and quickly, and eliminate the need for any wired or cabled solutions.

Tone DeRosa, Senior Product Manager, comments: “With ECT’s design experience and extensive knowledge of base materials and platings, we can deliver interposers with features that completely meet customer requirements. Our interposers are perfectly suited for assemblies in communications, commercial, medical, mobile device applications and are also ideal for non-destructive board level and system level testing.”

ECT can offer interposer solutions to meet almost every need by offering application specific designs when off-the-shelf solutions will not suffice.

To learn more details about ECT’s solutions for connecting boards, please visit http://ect-cpg.com/board-interconnect

LTX-Credence Ships the 600th PAx Test System for Testing RF Front End Devices

PAx and PAx-ac systems continue as the market leader for RF front end device testing

LTX-Credence shipped the 600th PAx test system to Skyworks Solutions, Inc., an innovator of high performance analog semiconductors connecting people, places and things. The PAx platform has been specifically designed to address the high volume manufacturing test challenges of suppliers of advanced front end RF devices such as Multiband RF Power amplifiers, RF Front End Modules, RF Analog System in Package and RF discrete devices. The PAx platform is shipped in two main configurations, PAx and PAx-ac, which are deployed at most IDM, Fabless and OSAT companies specializing in the high volume manufacturing and test of these types of devices.

“Our goal with the PAx platform was to offer semiconductor manufacturers of RF front end devices an alternative to deploying their own in house test systems.” Steve Wigley, Vice President of the semiconductor tester group of Xcerra, commented: “Our approach was to leverage LTX-Credence RF manufacturing test technology and use our systems expertise to package it in a compact footprint to offer the required levels of performance, fast test times and operational availability. The shipment of the 600th of these test systems demonstrates the value of this approach, and has established the PAx platform as the clear market leader for testing RF front end applications with an estimated market share greater than 70%”.

To learn more about the PAx test system, visit http://ltxc.com/pax-ac

Xcerra’s New Ultra-Compact DxV: Accelerated Time-to-Volume

DxV enables new ways to reduce time from design validation to volume production

Xcerra Tester Group launches the DxV ­-  an ultra-compact ATE with 5 high performance instrument slots, which has been designed for production and evaluation lab use. The DxV completes Xcerra’s toolset supporting efforts for fastest time-to-volume.

The DxV is a five slot variant of the successful Diamondx platform. It is a compact self-contained single ‘box’ solution providing 5 configurable slots for a range of standard Diamondx instruments. The DxV features a fully integrated, production worthy ATE design in ultra-small dimensions, portability, and low weight. The system is designed for low acoustic noise of 55 dB enabling deployment of the DxV in office spaces and engineering labs.
For initial production configuration the DxV features direct or cable dock, and a light portable manipulator option. The DxV is easy to set up and runs the full suite of Unison production tools. The DxV facilitates the transitions to high volume production on the Diamondx, as it uses the same test software and runs the same program.

Together with established Xcerra tools for silicon development the DxV enables the customers to efficiently improve their time-to-volume. The comprehensive Xcerra toolset supports the entire process from design to ´validation to production readiness and finally volume production.

The DxV provides a low cost high density ATE in a small portable and flexible package, offering all the advantages of a mainstream ATE but allows bench to production use.

To learn more about the DxV, please visit http://ltxc.com/DxV

ECT Launches New Probe for High Performance RF Signal Testing of PCBAs

The ECT CSP-30TS-011 has been designed to perfectly mate with PCBA test pads and vias

Everett Charles Technologies (ECT) recently added the CSP-30TS-011 to its industry-proven portfolio of high frequency probes for the PCBA test market. This next generation coaxial probe provides instrumentation-quality interface for broadband RF measurements exceeding 20GHz, delivering superior performance while seamlessly mating with pads, vias, and other board features. The CSP-30TS-011 RF probe combines several innovative features to provide a truly reliable and cost-effective testing solution.

The CSP-30TS-011 is compatible with other ECT ICT/FT probes and features an open architecture format that can be configured with up to 4 easy-to-replace ground probes.  With an insertion loss (S21) in excess of 20 GHz @ -1dB and a consistent impedance of 50 Ohm, the CSP-30TS-011 offers outstanding signal integrity and measurement capability. The CSP-30TS-011 provides spring-loaded compliance for both the center signal probe and the outer ground probes, while the knurl housing feature allows for easy and reliable press fit mounting.

Tony DeRosa, Senior Product Manager, explains: “We absolutely see the need for reliable, high performance and cost-efficient RF probe solutions in the PCBA test market. We launched this new probe to support our customers in high speed, high volume testing as well as in engineering labs.”

To learn more details about CPS-30TS-011 please visit https://shop.ect-cpg.com/product/CSP-30TS-011

Multitest MiCon® Contactor: Advantages of Cantilever Design for MCU and ASIC Testing

Significant Improvements in Overall Equipment Efficiency (OEE)

Multitest recently launched the MiCon contactor. The MiCon leverages the industry-proven Cantilever technology for the final test of Microcontrollers, Industrial DSPs and Application Specific ICs. Evaluations at customer test floors showed substantial improvements in first pass yield, life span and cleaning cycles compared to spring pin solutions. MiCon fully supports the requirements of a high, stable and reliable production output at lowest cost of test.

MiCon leverages the proven Cantilever technology for an architecture, which matches existing spring pin test boards and provides self-cleaning wipe. MiCon is a spring pin  footprint compatible alternative supporting advanced temperature requirements as well as advanced power/current requirements. The footprint compatibility allows for easy and cost-efficient conversion from spring pin setups. The fully decoupled load board side of the spring ensure no degradation of the load board pad.

MiCon features a single piece design, which ensures a long lifespan, low and stable contact resistance, high current carrying capability and an extended temperature range. The MiCon allows for testing at full specification values. The extended operating range accommodates device lead trim and form variability such as device alignment accuracy and device lead coplanarity.

Marcel Sans, Project Manager, explains: “The performance reports, received from the onsite customer evaluations, showed extraordinary advantages compared to the traditional spring pin solutions with a first pass yield of 99.8 %, time between cleaning cycles more than doubled and provided full contacting performance without signs yield degradations at high insertions counts, beyond the spring pins end of life.”

To learn more about the Multitest MiCon contactor, please visit http://multitest.com/MiCon

Multitest Atlas Contactor Demonstrates Advanced Electrical and Mechanical Performance in WLCSP Testing

Atlas 0.3 mm pitch spring probe validated at customer site

Multitest’s new 0.3 mm pitch Atlas contactor successfully passed a demanding customer production floor evaluation. The customer’s evaluation measures confirmed that the Atlas did reduce the customer’s cost of test while improving test yield and increasing throughput. Based on the evaluation results, the customer ordered a significant number of Atlas 030 contactors to support their new product WLCSP production ramp.

The customer is a long time user of Multitest contactors and after reviewing the new Atlas design they were eager to evaluate it. It is the added strength of the Atlas cruciform tip that captured the customer’s attention.  Not only is the Atlas mechanically superior, the Atlas offers electrical performance that allows the customer to test to the true performance of the device. The evaluation ended with the customer placing an order for a significant quantity of Atlas 030 contactors.

The key to the WLCSP Atlas’s high performance, high reliability and superior electrical contacting is the combination of increased mechanical tip strength and short probe electrical performance.  Atlas WLCSP test contactors achieve mechanical reliability with a rigid “cruciform” tip applied to Multitest’s QuadTech flat probe technology.  The Atlas 030 offers a short electrical path, with lower capacitance and inductance that is ideal for functional and AC parametric testing of WLCSP devices that require high system bandwidth and throughput gains in large multisite test applications.

The cruciform tip provides increased tip rigidity with a much greater immunity to breakage than traditional WLCPS probes used in earlier-generation test sockets. The Atlas 030 has 0.310 mm of compliance for bump structures that requires a larger compliance window for reliable contacting in high parallel test applications.

Bert Brost, Senior Product Managers, explains: “We are very proud of the positive result of the evaluation. The evaluation by the customer confirmed what we already knew, the Atlas 030 contactor is a high performance solution for WLCSP testing.”

To learn more about the Multitest Atlas contactor, please visit http://multitest.com/atlas

ECT High Current Probes Leverage over 50 Years of Industry Leading Experience

A comprehensive high current product portfolio provides both technical and commercial advantages to the customer

ECT high current probes are an optimal choice for testing PCBAs and electronic assemblies as well as embedded OEM applications. With multiple options ranging from 10 A up to 150 A DC, ECT offers cost-effective and highly reliable solutions to address the major technical challenges facing high current probes: consistent high current carrying capacity and low heat dissipation.

ECT high current spring probes provide customers with a broad range of proven capabilities. Their rugged design is optimized to ensure solid contact and resistance as low as 5 mOhm, making them ideal for inline applications. The probe tips have been engineered to maximize contact surface area and reduce arcing.

Tony DeRosa, Senior Product Manager, explains:”All ECT high current probes are designed to optimize current carrying capacity and minimize path resistance. Our engineering team utilizes highly conductive materials and platings, ensuring maximum current carrying capacity, wear resistance, and thermal integrity. All high current probes are designed to provide extreme durability while offering high, stable contact force; the ECT 100A probe has a spring force of about 8 lbs. while the flat tip geometry and ECT’s bias ball architecture ensure low resistance.”

ECT high current spring probes are well-suited to a variety of applications, from in-circuit and industrial testing to OEM applications. They offer an ideal solution for both high volume production and engineering test lab environments, and end- users include board test houses, fixture companies, and direct OEM customers.”

To learn more about ECT high current spring probes, visit http://ect-cpg.com/hc-probes