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PCB-Sept2017

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42 The PCB Magazine • September 2017 Troubleshooting defects and process issues starts first with optimizing the processes for highest yields possible. However, even the best engineering does not guarantee the total elim- ination of defects in the process-intense PCB manufacturing process. Thus, the good troubleshooter enhances the problem-solving exercise using various Six Sig- ma techniques. The one used here by the au- thor and illustrated throughout this article is the DMAIC method: • Define the problem and goal, identify the customers served by the process, and define customer requirements • Measure—refine the problem statement, decide what to measure, and begin the search for root causes • Analyze the data looking for trends, patterns, etc. • Improve—develop innovative new processes • Control—institute controls to insure improvements remain. Document all activities for future usage/training There was quite a lot of subject matter here. However, it should be recognized that noth- ing can substitute for a methodical approach to problem solving utilizing all the tools and knowledge available to the troubleshooter. PCB Michael Carano is VP of tech- nology and business development for RBP Chemical Technology. To reach Carano, or read past columns, click here. PROCESS ENGINEERING & DEFECT PREVENTION Even as robots become increasingly common, they remain incredibly difficult to make. From designing and modeling to fabricating and test- ing, the process is slow and costly: even one small change can mean days or weeks of rethinking and revising important hardware. But what if there were a way to let non-experts craft different robotic designs, in one sitting? Researchers from MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) are get- ting closer to doing exactly that. In a new paper, they present a system called "Interactive Roboga- mi" that lets you design a robot in minutes, and then 3D print and assemble it in as little as four hours. One of the key features of the system is that it allows designers to determine both the robot's movement (gait) and shape (geometry), a capabil- ity that's often separated in design systems. "Designing robots usually requires expertise that only mechanical engineers and roboticists have," says PhD student and co-lead author Adri- ana Schulz. "What's exciting here is that we've created a tool that allows a casual user to design their own robot by giving them this expert knowl- edge." The paper, which is being published in the new issue of the International Journal of Robotics Re- search, was co-led by PhD graduate Cynthia Sung (now an assistant professor at the University of Pennsylvania) alongside MIT professors Wojciech Matusik and Daniela Rus. The other co-authors include PhD student Andrew Spielberg, former master's student Wei Zhao, former undergraduate Robin Cheng, and Columbia University Professor Eitan Grinspun. Custom Robots in a Matter of Minutes

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