Electronics Assembly Knowledge, Vision & Wisdom
A Review of Industry Terminology and Acronyms
A Review of Industry Terminology and Acronyms
What does the term BTC refer to? The Assembly Brothers talk about uniformity of terminology and the industry's acronyms.
Board Talk
Board Talk is presented by ITM Consulting

Phil Zarrow
Phil Zarrow, ITM Consulting
With over 35 years experience in PCB assembly, Phil is one of the leading experts in SMT process failure analysis. He has vast experience in SMT equipment, materials and processes.


Jim Hall
Jim Hall, ITM Consulting
A Lean Six-Sigma Master Blackbelt, Jim has a wealth of knowledge in soldering, thermal technology, equipment and process basics. He is a pioneer in the science of reflow.

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Transcript
Phil
Welcome to Board Talk with Jim Hall and Phil Zarrow of ITM Consulting; the assembly brothers coming to you from the ITM elegante ballroom high atop Mount Rialto. 

And we're here to talk about electronic assembly, materials, equipment, components, practices and procedures among many other things. 

And I believe today Jim we have a component issue.

Jim
I would call it more about the terminology issue Phil. It comes from C.F. and it says what does the term BTC refer to? Is it the same as QFN?

Phil
I know it's different than a BLT because that's what I was thinking of earlier today.

Let's talk about uniformity of terminology and how this industry is so good at making acronyms and using various terminology for the same thing.

This is one of Jim's favorite soapboxes so I will step over and hand the microphone over to Jim.

Jim
We work in a wonderfully exciting industry where new stuff and new materials, components are appearing all the time and that's great. But we suffer from the lack of standard terminology. 

Different people want to put their own brand name or terminology to get some brand recognition or personal recognition and as my brother said, we get into a situation where people are calling the same thing by different names or using the same name to refer to two different things.

But here we have an example of a new family of component types that have evolved and the big standards industry in our world, the IPC exerted its clout and said we are going to take all these things and we are going to call them bottom terminated components.

What they're referring to are parts that have no leads protruding out or no balls or bumps on the bottom but just have pads on the bottom. 

We answered a specific question, a QFN is a Bottom Terminated Component or a BTC. 

But also an LGA, a Land Grid Array or an SON, a Small Outline No-lead. Or the most infamous one that I've heard is the MLFP, the Micro Lead Frame Plastic Package. 

All these are BTC's and IPC has produced a wonderful specification to help us along with this and it is spec 7093, Bottom Terminated Components, edited by two of the best people in the industry, Ray Prasad and Vern Solberg who are all paragons of our industry. 

There's a tremendous amount of information and you should use it.

I know in our work, we're not perfect but we try to use the generic term BTC whenever we discuss this type of component so that we avoid confusion and promote universal communication.

Phil
Our old friend Leo Lambert was in on that one too, talk about another old timer.

But yes it's an excellent spec. We don't usually rave about specifications as our audience well knows but this one is well worth downloading. 

You've been listening to Board Talk. 

Whatever you do and whatever component you're soldering, please don't solder like my brother.

Jim
And don't solder like my brother.

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