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20 SMT007 MAGAZINE I FEBRUARY 2020 When we look at the optical inspection market growth trajectory, we can see how process challenges helped create innova- tions. For example, solder paste inspection (SPI) has undergone a shift from 2D to 3D because the 2D inspection technologies man- ufacturers traditionally used to collect solder deposit images could not solve shadowing problems. Thus, companies developed 3D SPI to capture the printed solder paste height to accurately measure the total volume of paste printed. Several years later, we see the same need for surface-mounted component inspection with AOI systems. As today's board complexity is increas- ing with more compo- nents and joints, higher density, and shrinking package technologies, such as the 0201 metric (008004 imperial) micro- chips (Figure 1), basic AOI technologies using blob analysis or high megapixel cameras may no longer be practical. Most decisions made are based on a "good/bad" comparison of reference images, which can easily be affected by variables like component surface finish, board condition, component proximity, and more. Feature by Brent Fischthal KOH YOUNG AMERICA INC. Industry 4.0 Discussion Big data is the foundation for Industry 4.0, so advanced inspection systems must evolve from simply judging "pass/fail" tools into highly intuitive, dynamic decision-mak- ing systems that emphasize the need for reli- able, traceable data. Artificial intelligence (AI) engines can empower tools to help customers analyze and optimize the production process by managing process data from connected SPI and AOI systems. What's Driving AOI Innovation and Collaboration? Figure 1: Using a ballpoint pen for reference, the image compares an 0201 metric (008004 imperial) component with an 0402 metric (01005 imperial) and an 0603 metric (0201 imperial) component. (Source: ASM Assembly Systems GmbH)

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