Top 10 Most-Read SMT007 Columns of 2018


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Here are the top 10 most-read SMT007 columns from the past year.

New Year Resolutions and Best Wishes

The New Year stands before us, like a chapter in a book, waiting to be written. We can help write that story by setting goals. But the true challenge is to keep these goals from falling into a wish list and to know how to stick to those goals and when. I hope that in this year to come, goals give us direction in whatever we do, be it on AI, 5G, mixed reality and quantum computing or the next chip design. 

One World, One Industry: Skilled Talent—Can We Meet Rising Demand?

In 2018, the U.S. GDP is expected to continue its rise, while unemployment rates are expected to drop further. Experts agree that the global economy is also showing signs of strengthening.

Cross Border Deals: What to Look for and How to Manage

My firm has been approached by foreign firms several times this year and in 2017 who want to acquire PCB, PCBA, or other electronics companies in North America. 

Raising the Capability Ceiling: SMTA Upper Midwest Chapter Expo

An energetic and engaged crowd filled the recent SMTA Upper Midwest Expo & Tech Forum. The event, held in June 14 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, hosted 57 exhibiting companies and had over 100 pre-registered attendees. The underlying theme for the technical presentations was "Raising the Capability Ceiling!" Here's a wrap-up of the event. 

Fact or Myth: Do 80% of M&A Deals Fail?

We are often asked by business owners if the commonly quoted figure is true that 80% of mergers fail to meet expectations after closing. There is a fair amount of research on large ($1 billion+), public deals that suggests that the 80% post-closing failure rate may be true.

Replating of Gold Fingers: Getting the Shine Back

There are several instances where the gold contacts on PCBs need to be replated, and IPC A-610 discusses several of these cases. This column by Bob Wettermann discusses gold replating of defective contacts caused by processes such as wave or selective soldering, or plating. 

Filling the Gap: Underfill Rework

Rework technicians must take into account a variety of factors when considering whether or not to rework underfilled components, such as BGAs, CSPs, flip chips, and other component packages on handheld devices. But without a full understanding of the underfill characteristics, expect the outcome to be low yields unless the board was designed with reworkability in mind.

Masking of Conformal Coating During Assembly and Rework

Masking of printed circuit boards post rework/repair as well as for initial PCB assembly is often required if the PCB is to be conformal coated. If a board that has conformal coating on it needs to be reworked or repaired, the conformal coating needs to first be removed before the operation of rework or repair can take place. This column centers around the various options for conformal coating masking via a liquid application process. 

How to Prepare for a Smooth Post-M&A Deal Transition

Selling a company is an exciting process, as well as time-consuming, stressful, and complex. Both sellers and buyers are sometimes so caught up in the deal that they forget to properly plan the post-deal integration.

SMT Manufacturing: Why Soldering?

Upcoming AI hardware requires advanced semiconductors, packaging approaches, new architectures, increased speeds and capabilities of inference processing, and system design and manufacturing prowess continually developed to reach the interconnect density. Against this backdrop, packaging and assembly levels will continue to be critical technology and serve as the backbone of manufacturing electronic hardware to deliver desired products with enhanced miniaturization, functionality, and augmented intelligence promptly.

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