Closed-loop Process Control

As board assemblies become increasingly complex and difficult to solder, board manufacturers are looking for wave soldering machines that can provide closed-loop process control and automatic features. This allows engineers and operators to focus on maintaining a repeatable and optimized process, as well as maximizing throughput and equipment utilization.

The Electrovert® Electra™, VectraElite™, and VectraES™ offer several supportive features:

  • Auto lead clearance: Recipe-controlled automatic lead clearance (standard);

  • Auto stand-by mode: When no PCBs are being processed through the wave, the RPMs slow down, saving costs by reducing dross generation. A recipe controlled standard feature.

  • Recipe integration: Recipes are integrated with the auto start feature.  An unlimited amount of recipes can be stored with process notes and saved to each recipe.

  • ExactaWave™: An optional feature that provides automatic wave height control. The ExactaWave measures the solder wave height relative to the PCB on the conveyor.

  • Bar code: An optional feature consisting of a combo 1D/2D barcode that enables board tracking. All critical machine parameters (user defined) can be tracked either by board or by time.

  • Data logging and trending: Capture and trend all machine parameters with this standard software feature.

  • Easy GUI with quick view screen: Electrovert’s software and operation controls were designed with user interface in mind. The Windows® operating system is multi-functional and easy to use. The 3D GUI provides the user a real-time view of the complete machine modules, operation, and product being soldered. All Electrovert systems have a customizable ‘dashboard’ quick view screen. Quick view allows engineers and operators to view critical machine parameters that are important to the process or application.

  • Security features: Multiple security levels are available which can be configured and assigned to specific users.  Access rights to specific machine functions are configurable.

 

Even though most SMT soldering is achieved through reflow, some assemblies require that some of the Surface Mounted Devices (SMDs) on a board, such as chip components, must be wave soldered.
As the complexity of PCB assemblies continues to increase, many electronics assemblers are seeking a solution in a wave soldering machine.
As PCB designs become more complex, thicker, and denser, through-hole soldering is becoming more difficult. The introduction of lead-free alloys compounds these problems because lead-free alloys don’t wet as well as lead-bearing alloys, and deeper holes (due to PCB thickness) make thorough hole-filling less certain in many cases.
In the demanding environment of lead-free soldering, it is important to understand the different characteristics of lead-free materials. Wetting times for lead-free alloys are slower than those of tin/lead, and flow characteristic are more viscous.
Of the many flux products developed for soldering applications, most electronics assemblers prefer to use no-clean, low solids formulations, in part because they eliminate the post-reflow cleaning or defluxing process step.
Wave Soldering Award-winning wave soldering technologies have long met the demanding throughput and process control challenges of applications such as lead-free wave soldering.