All Questions on Automated X-ray Inspection Answered

Today, there is a high demand for complex and high-density printed circuit boards. With various minute details to take care of, maintaining the quality of the circuit boards is increasingly becoming difficult for the PCB manufacturers. They are employing various PCB inspection techniques to rectify errors in PCBs, and ensuring their proper working. X-ray inspection is one of the popular techniques employed for the purpose. Also, known as Automated X-Ray Inspection (AXI), this method offers several benefits over other contemporary methods. This post discusses the implementation of X-ray inspection of PCB assembly in detail.

What is PCB X-ray Inspection?

As the name suggests, this technique involves inspection of a PCB using X-ray. By inspecting printed circuit boards, you can detect any defects that might cause a major problem going ahead. Also, with the degree of complexity in PCBs, X-ray inspection is a better way of inspection as compared to other forms of inspection, like optical or thermal imaging. So, where can you use the PCB X-ray inspection technique? Let us look at that in some detail.

What are the Defect Detection Capabilities of X- Ray Inspection?

Typically, X-ray inspection is used to detect the following defects in the PCBs:

Soldering Defects: Since last many years, area array packages like QFNs, CSPs, and chips are used in variety of fields including communication, military, industrial controls, etc. These packages comprise several hidden solder joints, which may initiate lots of complications, due to invisible defects. Thus, AXI is employed to detect the following defects:

  • Solder bridges
  • Open circuits
  • Solder voids
  • Insufficient soldering
  • Solder shorts
  • Solder quality
  • Excess soldering

Component Defects: As known, the demand for compact PCB packages is on rise. These packages are equipped with miniature components, which are known to offer excellent performance, and considerable energy savings, too. These components may give rise to lots of complications, if the defects aren’t rectified on time. The AXI can be utilized to detect the following defects:

  • Misaligned or misplaced component
  • Lifted lead
  • Missing component

BGA and CSP Defects: X-ray inspection systems are employed to detect the following hidden defects of BGA and CSPs:

  • BGA open circuit connections
  • BGA shorts

Due to the above-mentioned capabilities, X-ray inspection has become an integral part of PCB manufacturing process. In the next post, we will discuss different types of Automated X-ray inspection techniques for PCBs. For more information about X- Ray Inspection, please visit http://www.acceleratedassemblies.com/ or contact the company at (630) 616-6680.