Validation of New Generation Tooling Concept for Electroplating of Copper on Printed Circuit Boards
A dynamically software controlled electroplating tooling concept has been developed to compensate the pattern dependence of the deposited layer thickness on different substrates. In this paper a validation of this new tooling concept on industry relevant printed circuit boards is presented. Simulations are compared with experimental results as obtained in a prototype electroplating cell. A quantitative improvement of the plating thickness uniformity between a standard electroplating cell and the advanced tooling approach is given. The influence of the conductivity of the electrolyte on the deposit distribution is studied and indicates a way to obtain a significant improvement in uniformity.
Tanks and Liners: Is Conventional Wisdom or Reliance on Internet-Based Answers Putting your Company at Risk?
Finishing companies face an array of unprecedented challenges. Decision-making is affected by these pressures. Conventional wisdom and/or the reliance on internet-based answers can lead to procurements that create unnecessary downtime, safety risks and loss. Factors compounding the pain of inadequate options and poor choices are aging plants and equipment, a shrinking manufacturing workforce and legal/policy/regulatory costs. Topics covered in this article include: (1) an overview of tanks and liners, (2) the true costs of downtime, (3) results from a recent tank and liner market survey, (4) the plastic paradox (including fires), (5) spark testing and leak monitoring technologies, (6) drop-ins, (7) what to look for from a supplier and (8) new advancements.
Electroplating: An Alternative for Producing Low Magnetic Loss Amorphous Alloys
In recent years, Hydro-Québec’s Research Institute has developed, through technological innovation, a program to improve energy efficiency in the generation, transmission and distribution of energy. Among the various projects, one was focused on the production of soft magnetic materials to improve the energy efficiency of distribution transformers. The aim of the project was to produce, by electrodeposition, free-standing foils or plates of amorphous Fe-P material having similar, or better, mechanical and low loss magnetic properties compared to iron-based amorphous alloys produced by rapid solidification. To meet this goal, an electroplating process was developed to produce a well-defined binary Fe-P amorphous alloy. The key electrochemical parameters, ancillary needs, critical monitoring and process controls were investigated. We succeeded in producing a fully amorphous soft magnetic material with very low power frequency losses and other advantageous properties such as a thickness range from 20 to 75 µm with a high production rate. Using thicker material, the production of stacked cores could be possible. In addition, electroplating offers the possibility of forming complex 2D shapes for rotating machines.
Functional Trivalent Chromium Electroplating
This paper will discuss recent research work on the development of a functional trivalent chromium plating process from a single, simple-to-control trivalent-based electrolyte to replace hexavalent chromium plating. Hexavalent chromium plating has been used for many years to provide hard, durable coatings with excellent wear and corrosion resistance properties. However, hexavalent chromium baths have come under increasing scrutiny due to the toxic nature of the bath, effects on the environment and worker health. In this work, we are updating accomplishments to achieve properties comparable to existing hexavalent chromium plating for functional applications. Work on achieving desirable thickness, uniformity, adhesion, porosity and corrosion resistance, as well as other material properties, will be discussed.