OEMs are continually moving toward PCB hybrid assembly, meaning the combination of conventional SMT assembly and microelectronics assembly. It’s important to know that there are seven major steps that need to be taken to achieve successful PCB hybrid assembly, Fig. 1. These seven steps are especially important for newly emerging implantable and ingestible medical devices.
Those steps are:
- Deploying the right ancillary devices such as tooling, fixtures, and jigs.
- Deciding which process to perform first, SMT or Microelectronics.
- Protecting sensitive microelectronics areas.
- Proper use of epoxies.
- Conductive versus non-conductive epoxy applications.
- Thermal profiling and heat dissipation.
- Maintaining records, inspection tools and reliability analysis.
Check out our recent SMT007 column to get a better understanding of each of these steps. In the meantime, here are some tips and hints to get you onboard.
- Special types of tools, fixtures, and jigs are necessary in microelectronics assembly to eliminate foreign objects.
- Also, glob tops on microelectronics devices require different and specialized tools, jigs, and fixtures.
- Most often, SMT assembly is first performed followed by microelectronics assembly.
- It’s highly important to protect sensitive microelectronics areas.
- Two types of epoxies are thermally conductive and non-conductive. Selecting the right one to use involves several factors your EMS provider can help you with.
- Glass transition temperature (Tg) has to be considered for thermal profiling.
Lastly, there’s records maintenance, inspection tools and reliability analysis. As part of a new product introduction or NPI phase, medical device OEMs need to ensure all manufacturing records are kept safe for five to seven years. Those include component vendors, tracking lot, and batch codes, as well as certificates of compliance and approval for all parts and components on PCBs. It’s critical for the OEM to clearly identify manufacturers when and if a medical product is recalled.