Saving money down the line

Training personnel to IPC standards can cut the cost of rework and repair, and may even eliminate process issues altogether, says Advanced Rework Technology.

When production costs are increasing due to process related issues, electronics manufacturers may find themselves outsourcing rework and repair with not enough skilled personnel to complete work in-house. Having trained personnel can counteract these issues and show current and potential customers that you are dedicated to furthering the excellence of the products and services offered by your company.

Looking at the entire process, from design through to inspection of the final assembly, there are several relevant training courses that can relieve pressure on time, resources and cost. Appropriate training can: ensure personnel are trained to meet requirements for material selection and process control; ensure technicians are trained to the process requirements for the product; and ensure inspectors and those responsible for product assurance are trained to understand the latest accept/reject criteria.

Choosing the right course
Bearing this in mind, electronics manufacturers may need access to several different kinds of training courses. Design engineers can be trained to IPC Certified Interconnect Designer-CID. This course covers: design, considerations, materials, printed board characteristics, fabrication and assembly requirements, and electrical parameters. It’s not just for designers, however, with many professionals in supporting industries becoming certified to enhance their technical knowledge on transforming a PCB design for successful manufacture, assembly and test.

Process engineers and assembly technicians can be trained to IPC J-STD 001, Requirements for Electrical and Electronic Assemblies. This course covers general assembly requirements, material, component and equipment and product assurance as well as requirements for mounting and soldering wires and terminals, as well as through hole and surface mount devices.

Product assurance and inspection personnel can be trained to IPC-A-600 Acceptance of (Bare) Printed Boards, IPC-A-610 Acceptance of Electronics Assemblies and/or IPC/WHMA-A-620 Acceptance for Cable and Wire Harness.

The subjects covered in IPC-A-600 include externally observable conditions, board edges, solder coatings and holes, printed contacts and markings. It also addresses internal observable conditions, dielectric materials, conductive patterns and plated through holes.

IPC-A-610 is focused on general requirements such as handling, hardware, soldering acceptability requirements, through hole technology, surface mount assemblies and component damage.

IPC/WHMA-A-620 covers preparation/soldering and crimping, moulding and potting, coaxial/twinaxial cable assemblies and wire bundle securing. Revision D of this standard was published in January 2020.

Assembly technicians should also be competent to the latest rework, modification and repair of printed boards certifications. By attending 7711/21 training, they will get to grips with practical guidelines for rework of various component types and technologies, as well as laminate and conductor repair.

Industry recognised standards
Having personnel trained to IPC’s industry recognised certification programme can help relieve the pressures of modern-day electronics manufacturing, regardless of company size or the products manufactured.

For those with no internal IPC training, Advanced Rework Technology can work to produce a bespoke syllabus for training and process requirements, as well as helping to produce process and inspection reports.

Advanced Rework Technology’s experienced training staff chair and sit on numerous IPC and industry committees, helping to produce the best possible documents, standards and training courses, making Advanced Rework Technology a leading IPC and industry training provider.