Electronics Assembly Knowledge, Vision & Wisdom
Collaboration to Combat Head on Pillowing Defects
Collaboration to Combat Head on Pillowing Defects
This project was designed to evaluate AXI results from different machine platforms by analyzing results from similar platforms at different facilities.
Analysis Lab

Authored By:
Alex Chan, Paul Brown
Alcatel-Lucent, Ottawa, ON, Canada

Lars Bruno, Anne-Kathrine Knoph
Ericsson, Katrineholm, Sweden

Thilo Sack
Celestica Inc., Toronto, ON Canada

David Geiger, David Mendez
Flextronics International, Milpitas, CA, USA

Mulugeta Abtew, Iulia Muntele
Sanmina Corporation, San Jose, CA, Huntsville, AL, USA

Michael Meilunas
Universal Instruments Corporation, Binghamton, NY, USA
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Summary
It is an ongoing battle in the OEM and EMS world to eliminate Head on Pillow (HoP) defects in every day assembly activities. Recent effort in the industry has been primarily focused on defect mitigation, while limited investment has been made to understand the true capability of HoP detection using Automatic X-ray Inspection (AXI). For this reason, the study presented here focused on evaluating the HoP detection capability of four different AXI platforms using assemblies with known HoP defects.
Conclusions
HoP is not an easy defect to detect in production. The industry's perception of the problem has come a long way from believing that HoP is an isolated phenomenon to now understanding and accepting that HoP is a much more prevalent defect in BGA soldering in the SMT process. In this collaborative study between the OEM and EMS, the overall results are very encouraging. It suggests that with focused engineering effort between the EMS and the AXI suppliers, a reliable HoP detection capability is achievable.

This project was able to quantify the effectiveness of the HoP detection through a lengthy experiment that culminated with a tedious cross-sectioning effort. The results suggested that some machines can potentially catch 100% of the HoP defect while other less effective machines are still capable of catching 90%+ of the HoP defect.

Depending on the machine type used, adding HoP inspection to production may potentially result in a small increase in AXI inspection time. However, with the quantifiable results demonstrated in this study, such an increase is easily justifiable on the grounds that it will help to avoid 90%+ of the HoP defect escapes. By extension, implementation of AXI for HoP detection in volume production on high risk BGAs is now a common practice in some of the OEM and EMS involved in the project.
Initially Published in the SMTA Proceedings
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