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Design007-Dec2020

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68 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I DECEMBER 2020 that has a somewhat basic primitive function. For instance, one of our last boards we made last year used a MEMS micro- phone and three LEDs. The louder that you talked into the microphone, the more the LEDs lit up in series. It's not a fancy PCB, but in the second year of the program, this is something where we not only teach schematics, BOM, and layout, but they also learn how to do sten- cil printing, pick-and-place, and reflow for that same board. It's a capstone class that's meant to give them experience using electron- ics, drafting, design, and manufacturing alto- gether. In the third year of the program, we teach a full class in Altium Designer that shows them how to design for manufacturing. Several companies hire our students to do library file generation, so they generate library files and do some PCB manufacturing. But most of the time, they just get hired as a junior draftsper- son. In addition to doing Altium to do sche- matics, schematic library files, BOM, layout, and the fabrication files, a particular empha- sis is made on the fabrication files—especially the pick-and-place files—that get used on our equipment in their next class where they build the PCB that we get fabricated at a local com- pany. We send that board through our stencil printer, stencil print inspection, and pick-and- place and reflow. It's not just designed for functionality; it's designed for manufacturing to make sure that there are fiducials for the stencil printer and that there's a second set of fiducials for AOI that's not going to be printed on so that we can easily see it. They also take blue- prints classes, a SolidWorks class, and geo- metric dimensioning and tolerancing. We get fairly deep into the design. We want them to design something that they can have at the end of the experience. Those three years are spent the most on terms of where the design is and toward making a working PCB, with the fourth year having a heavy application of design to manufacturing by running an entire SMT line, inspection equipment, and testing equipment based on a PCB that was designed in Altium. When we first made the program, I asked, "What design program is most popular?" A lot of people still use EAGLE CAD because the seat cost is cheaper, but Altium is so univer- sally used at this point. We were considering bringing Altium into our associate's degree to eventually replace EasyEDA, but we'd have to work that in with the instructor and every- thing like that, so it's just one of those things. Eventually, it will come into play. Johnny Vanderford Johnny Vanderford, assistant professor and MEMS program coordinator, demonstrates manufacturing processes in the lab. MEMS student training also includes inspection and testing.

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