ATCO: Surface-mount Technology (SMT) Equipment Manufacturer & Supplier
Advanced Techniques US Inc. (ATCO) is proud to offer a variety of precision equipment for professional circuit board equipment applications. We are committed to our customers, and provide long-term support with repairs, training, and the best SMT (Surface Mount Technology) equipment installation in the industry. Proudly manufactured in the United States, our PCB (Printed Circuit Board) machines and surface mount soldering equipment prevent a variety of typical issues associated with inferior circuit board equipment. Learn more about us.
SMT Soldering & Circuit Board Equipment
What is an SMD or BGA rework station?
In electronic assembly, specifically PCB assembly and repair, a rework station is equipment that allows for soldering and de-soldering of electronic components. This is done by applying precisely controlled and targeted heating at the component and the PCB until solder joints melt, flow to form a connection, and cool to solidify forming a strong interconnect.
SMD (surface mount device) or BGA (ball grid array) refers to the specific type and package layout of electronic components.
Flip chip bonders improve standard BGA/SMD rework with superior heating interfaces. Most common electronic components that are repaired or reworked today are SMD type and are mounted on the surface of the circuit board, hence their name, surface mount device.
A BGA is a subset of surface mount devices, with connections in the form of solder balls arranged in a grid array under the package die. In order to safely repair or replace such components, a rework station must have more advanced features than a traditional SMD rework station.
This includes machine vision like split vision optics, precision device placement, and removal capability, and computer controlled thermal cycling. This is why in the industry a “BGA rework station” is a term used to describe a more advanced rework station capable of handling general SMD components but also specifically BGAs.
What is a reflow oven?
The process of soldering electronic components specifically, surface mount devices, onto circuit boards during PCB assembly involves heating the circuit board until solder paste melts and creates a solder joint. This is performed in a machine called a reflow oven or reflow soldering oven.
There are various types like small benchtop, standalone, batch, and inline conveyor systems. The reflow SMT ovens utilize nitrogen reflow for enhanced reliability of the soldering.
Heating technologies also vary and include air or nitrogen convection, infra-red, vapor phase, and conduction. For volume production environments, a large inline convection oven (15ft – 20ft long) is preferred as it allows to streamline the SMT assembly process and has high throughput.
The reflow simulator provides advanced thermal monitoring with minimal input due to the programable rework cycles creating reliable quality control. For small volume applications, a batch reflow oven is best if it does not sacrifice performance and profiling capability.
This is especially the case when a facility has limited floor space. There is no one fit solution for every product and some types are better suited for specific applications and throughput requirements.
Over 4,500 Installations Worldwide
Advanced Techniques US Inc. designs and manufacturers precision equipment for:
- reflow soldering,
- SMD / BGA rework,
- Flip Chip bonding,
- JEDEC reflow, and
- IPC D coupon testing applications.
Our product line consists of SMD / BGA Placement & Rework Stations, Flip Chip Bonders, Reflow Soldering Ovens, Reflow Simulators for SMD Preconditioning and PCB Coupon Thermal Stress Testing, and SMT Pick & Place equipment ideal for environments with prototype to medium volumes.
By working closely with a customer to fully understand and identify application requirements, we are able to offer an ideal solution.