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Silicon Frogs and Smashing Asteroids: A Review of the IPC High Reliability ForumNovember 1, 2023 | Teresa Rowe, IPC Senior Director, Assembly and Standards Technology
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes
In the electronics industry, we all agree about the expectation that items leaving Earth must work all the time, and we expect the same level of reliability from our communications systems and our cars. There may be differences in the hardware, but vigilance during design and build are integral to ensuring mission success.
We kept this expectation in mind for nearly two years, as we planned and then executed the 2023 IPC High Reliability Forum, Oct. 17–18, in Baltimore, Maryland. The forum had been postponed due to the pandemic, but we came back with a mission to make it better than ever—and it was. We heard presentations on topics ranging from what it takes to smash into an asteroid, to the challenges of making reliable consumer products.
We began the event with a panel discussion featuring Terry Hoffman and Valentino De Leon of CISCO, Steve Murray of Northrup Grumman, Kevin Kusiak of Lockheed Martin, and Brian Chislea of Dow Chemical Company. The panel, moderated by Bhanu Sood of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and Teresa Rowe of IPC, set the meaning for “high reliability.” The panel participants, representing various sectors of the industry, noted that a lessons-learned database provides a way to make sure information is archived, updated, and maintained so that new projects benefit even as progress is made and the industry advances.
Ed Reynolds of Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), presented the keynote titled, “The DART MISSION: Earth Strikes Back.” He provided an in-depth perspective of the mission challenges experienced while working to change the trajectory of an asteroid traveling at 14,000 miles per hour in space. There was no doubt that this was a much-needed mission to test planetary defense from threats from outside Earth’s atmosphere. The DART Mission captured the attention of the global public in 2022 as the spacecraft—no bigger than two classic refrigerators—moved toward the Didymos asteroid.
Heads Up on Day Two
What were flying silicon frogs doing at the High Reliability Forum? For those playing along with the trivia, the answer was “conformal coating.” The panel discussion, and the reference to frogs, explored the need for excellence in cleaning and coating solutions in the automotive industry.
The panel members discussed results of a project and the challenges facing the automotive industry to bring electric vehicles to a mass market. Interestingly, only one attendee admitted to having an electric vehicle, and we noted that we should revisit that statistic in five years to see how it changes as solutions are identified for the reliability issues discussed.
Throughout the day, presenters shared information on microvia reliability, solder joint fatigue, novel finishes, and objective evidence for cleanliness, to name a few. IPC Emerging Engineer Rachel Hartig of APL presented her findings on a study of CGA Parylene undercoating, and Mike Konrad of Aqueous Technologies treated the group to story time where the topic centered on cleaning no-clean flux. Hearty discussion during the Q&A sessions added debate, diverse context from various industry sectors, and promises of colleagues to discuss solutions to their challenges over dinner.
What high reliability discussion would be complete without a medical topic? Dr. Cynthia Chestek, associate professor of Biomedical Engineering and Robotics at the University of Michigan, spoke on “Neuroprostheses for Controlling Hand and Finger Movements.” It was enlightening and relatable to all. As she noted, her group is working to bring a medical device out of the lab and into the public. Reliability is a necessary element in this endeavor.
Wrapping up the event, the Technical Program Committee responsible for the forum convened for a panel discussion reflecting on the lessons learned from the forum and what challenges the industry continues to have moving forward.
The introduction of 5G/6G has created a growing demand for faster rates of data transfer and operation at higher frequencies, pushing signals to travel toward the outer edges of conductors. As a result, the surface finish applied over the copper circuitry is now gaining more attention.
Indium Corporation to Showcase Proven EV Products and High-Reliability Alloys at Productronica China02/28/2024 | Indium Corporation
As a materials pioneer and trusted partner in electric vehicle (EV) and e-Mobility manufacturing, Indium Corporation is proud to showcase its high-reliability alloys and soldering solutions at Productronica China, March 20-22, in Shanghai.
Ventec International Group Co., Ltd. , is pleased to announce that UL’s evaluation of two of Ventec’s halogen-free, phenolic cured high-CTI substrates have received authorization to apply the UL mark.
The iNEMI Connector Reliability Test Recommendations Project, Phases 1 through 3, addressed the need for a standardized reliability evaluation method for connectors.
ROCKA Solutions is excited to announce that Justin Worden, Vice President of Sales & Marketing, will present at the upcoming SMTA Dallas Expo & Tech Forum. The event is scheduled to take place Tuesday, March 19, 2024 at the Plano Event Center.