What’s New at DownStream?


Reading time ( words)

Since its founding in the uncertain days of 2002, DownStream Technologies has made a name for itself with its line of PCB design post-processing tools. Founder Rick Almeida gives us an update on the latest innovations at DownStream, and he discusses some of the challenges and trends he sees in the PCB design segment. 

Andy Shaughnessy: Rick, why don’t you start by telling us about some of the new tools at DownStream.

Rick Almeida: The last few releases of our post-processing tools have been focused in the areas of assembly panel design and DFM. We’ve added large number of new checking routines in DFM. We now have a major release in the works planned for release in late 2016 or early 2017 that focuses on integration between documentation and CAM file verification. This release will modularize our products so that they may be mixed and matched together to create a custom PCB post processing solution based on our customers’ requirements. As part of this release we will be bringing out some new tools in support of IPC-2581 PCB stack-up visualization in both DFMStream and our BluePrint documentation tool. We are also investing in re-writes of some of the core CAM350 functions.

Shaughnessy: What new technologies are you particularly excited about?

Almeida: We are in the process of redefining our panel design and documentation capability. We’ve had a lot of customer input on panel design for both assembly arrays and PCB production and our bringing our panel capabilities together in a new unified panel design tool that understands the various hierarchies associated with PCB panels.

Shaughnessy: Which customer challenges led you to develop these new products?

Almeida: When engineering groups array PCBs for assembly panels, it’s important that they get optimum yield. To do this they must analyze the fit of the assembly panel on the fabrication panel. So the relationship between a one-up PCB, assembly array, and fabrication panel is paramount to determine which trade-offs to make to get the most PCBs on a single panel substrate.

Shaughnessy: How will these new tools help address your customers’ concerns?

Almeida: What we see is a tight coupling of manufacturing know-how embedded into software to help PCB designers and engineers make the right decision for optimum manufacturing execution. So the more manufacturing assistance our tools can provide earlier in the PCB design flow, the better for our customers in preparing the designs to be physically built.

To read this entire article, which appeared in the February 2016 issue of The PCB Design Magazine, click here.

Share

Print


Suggested Items

Words of Advice: Will 5G Affect Electronics Manufacturing?

06/17/2019 | Andy Shaughnessy, Design007 Magazine
In a recent survey, we asked the following question: How do you think 5G will affect the electronics manufacturing industry? Here are a few of the answers, edited slightly for clarity.

Design Rules Recipe: Solvability, Manufacturability, and Performance

06/06/2019 | I-Connect007 Editorial Team
One thing that we’ve noticed lately: Each designer seems to have his or her own way of using PCB design rules. There doesn’t seem to be much agreement about setting or using design rules. So, in this true experts panel, Mike Creeden of San Diego PCB joined Freedom CAD’s Scott McCurdy, Jay Carbone, and Rich Kluever to share their views on PCB design rules.

Altium’s Craig Arcuri on Design Rules: Past, Present, and Future

05/28/2019 | Andy Shaughnessy, Design007 Magazine
We recently spoke with Altium’s Craig Arcuri about his views on design and manufacturing rules. Craig has experience running both design and manufacturing companies, so he has a fairly circumspect view of constraints from both sides of the product realization process. Craig details some of the challenges with setting and managing hundreds of often divergent design and manufacturing rules, and how both design and manufacturing constraints need to evolve.



Copyright © 2019 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.