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August 2015 • SMT Magazine 83 STENCILS: WHY THEY STILL MATTER continues IntervIeW supplier chooses to measure it to best showcase their strengths and hide their weaknesses. Matties: are you saying it's going to be an oem that specs it? is that something that is happening now where an oem would go as far as spec'ing a stencil? Weissmann: I think that an OEM looking at al- ternatives would say that they need positional accuracy measured this way, as opposed to say- ing more broadly, "We need X positional accu- racy." Because any vendor can create a measure- ment that works for them, and it is comparing apples to oranges. I'll give you an example: We make 3D stencils, and this is helpful if you've got something placed on an IC substrate or on a circuit board already and you don't want to diffuse it, or if you need to print down into a cavity—there are a lot of different reasons why you might need a multidimensional stencil. Well, we can make multidimensional stencils with some 90-degree pockets. We've seen on some competitors' websites that they can do 90-degree pockets, but we know they can't do them in a real environment. They might be able to do one pocket 50 microns deep on a stencil, where we do dozens of pockets and they can be 20 mils deep and it's a totally different chal- lenge. What does it mean to be able to produce a 90-degree wall on a 3D stencil? That's a case where asking a better question can really help a customer get what they need. Matties: it is just a matter of knowing to ask that question. Weissmann: Right, and so by publishing a set of open source standards for measuring these dif- ferent things, that will help our customers com- pare apples to apples. Matties: when will you roll that out? Weissmann: They'll start coming out this year. Of course, since they're open source they'll be continually updated and enhanced as we go, and it's more of a continuous improvement than a big bang drop. If some fork of that branch gets more ac- ceptance, then that can become the official version, and that's great. We want to exercise our leadership in this. We're certainly the most technologically advanced stencil vendor in the Americas, but we hope that others will dive in and contribute their expertise as well for the benefit of the industry. Matties: thanks so much for spending time with us today. Weissmann: Thank you. SMT

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