Vapour phase soldering has now become the defacto standard for optimum soldering quality in complex PCBA production. Gemini Tec use two Asscon vapour phase reflow ovens within its SMT manufacturing operation and were first UK CEM to adopt this latest in-line capability from Asscon of Germany.
Our in-line Asccon VP2000 vapour phase oven is designed for high volume production throughput, allowing us to process a wide variety of batch sizes at incredibly fast speeds.
Gemini continue to make significant capital investments into world class production equipment, allowing us to support the manufacture of ultra complex surface mount PCB products.
Vapour phase reflow will be a new process to many of our new customers. Please read our FAQ's page by clicking this link FAQ's on vapour phase technology. A short video from within our surface mount department, shows the process in full motion.
How does vapour phase work & why is best suited to high technology PCBA products?
Vapour phase is centered around the use of Galden contained within a 'inert atmosphere'. This process is also known as condensation soldering. The process can also be used in conjunction with an applied vacuum to achieve void free soldering on highly complex SMT components.
Within the oven Galden is used as a the heat transfer medium. The fluid is both a non-corrosive and electrically non-conductive and has a maximum operating temperature when in use.
Within the reflow process the fluid starts to evaporate and a layer of vapour and condensing fluid covers the PCBA creating an inert and oxygen-free atmosphere. The vapour’s weight is greater than the surrounding air and so forms a protective gas atmosphere. As soon as the PCBA is immersed into the vapour zone, the vapour condenses on the PCBA and transfers the heat required. Only when a full thermal exchange has been completed, will the board be ejected from the reflow oven. In terms of processing PCBA's, products simply wait in a reflow state according to the design type, removing aggressive ramp up temperatures within a short time window.
As the heat transfer is linear across the entire PCBA it will never overheat, irrespective of the time within the vapour. Unlike convection ovens, each portion of the process (i.e. ramp/dwell) can be configured to suit any variable required and the process can be reproduced without deviation. The need to continually create and manage various thermal profiles is removed, due to the even heat distribution across the entire PCBA. Vapour phase soldering achieves the optimum results for a wide range of PCB assemblies, from flex circuits to complex high layer count PCB substrates.
Advanced Capability with Vacuum Processing Technology
In the multi-vacuum soldering process, assemblies are subjected to several vacuum applications with the option of applying vacuum processes both before and during the melting of the solder paste. Applying vacuum processes before the liquidous temperature is reached is particularly useful for removing any voids encapsulated and caused by the printing or pick & place processes. With lead free solders void formation risk is higher, due to the higher process temperatures. The patented technology used on Asscon vapour phase removes voids (formed after soldering) from the liquid soldering location.
Find out more about market leaders Asscon and vapour phase Technology. https://www.asscon.de/e/index.html
Gemini Tec support a wide range of applications from prototype to medium volume production, our investment in processing technology allows us to build complex and demanding PCBA products where reliability and conformance is essential.
Contact us to talk about your requirements in more detail. +44 (0) 1252 333 444
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