The importance of traceability is growing as companies look for ways to brings costs down as the production of highly advanced electronic assemblies increases. Tracking processes for OEM and CEM manufacturers is now key for successful production. In answer to this requirement, Altus Group, leading supplier of capital equipment in the UK and Ireland, is providing the most innovative capabilities on the market today thanks to its work with companies like YJ Link.
Gone are the days where simply adding labels to PCBAs was the best possible way to guarantee traceability and to help track a units’ life cycle. With the manufacture of electronic devices becoming more demanding, this traditional method is unreliable. It is slow and heavily labour intensive, involving the printing and hand placement of labels which can be costly, due to human error and manhours. As processes head towards being fully automated, this method is simply not viable.
The answer to traceability is laser marking. This is where a laser beam is used to change the surface structure of the solder resist to give a clear and permanent marking on the PCB. ‘’It is clear that traceability is a factor which electronics manufacturers are going to have to consider carefully, if they are not already. The automotive, aerospace, military and medical sectors already have a huge requirement for high levels of PCB data traceability. It won’t be long until all products will need to follow suit. To help in this requirement Altus has suppliers onboard who offer the very best in innovative traceability including YJ Link who is creating excellent solutions,” said Joe Booth, business development & marketing manager at Altus.
YJ Link is a leader in the field and has a range of capabilities to help with the process including the CO2 and FAYb Laser Marking Machines. By adopting a stage moving in X and Y axes, the laser head marks on the components giving 100 per cent traceability.
“Without proper traceability solutions in place, product recalls and quality issues can be problematic. Using innovative laser marking equipment alongside ERP connectivity tools allows manufacturers to easily store and attribute all production details against a specific PCBA for complete and gold standard board level traceability,”continued Joe.
“Altus already has an established UK installation base of YL Link equipment, so we can be in a good position to support new customers when the timing is right.”