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42 PCB007 MAGAZINE I MARCH 2020 to an order isn't necessarily a bad thing when compensating for acts of God, system/power failures, and variables such as those. However, when this is done because one is "rolling the dice" for a final yield, it is both reckless and extremely wasteful. Today, ET can provide valuable feedback to core processes in the PCB. The advancements in 4-wire Kelvin, time-domain reflectometry (TDR), buried passive testing, and hi-pot test- ing can help isolate key areas where fatal de- tects can be addressed at their root areas before the point of no return has passed and the PCB continues through later processes, increasing cost when the PCB is already doomed for the scrap bin. ET cannot be a "black box" in the overall process. Taking bets on whether the order gets through ET is not even what the lines in Las Vegas would take. Driving out waste takes a team approach, and ET can provide invaluable information to areas, such as plating, drill, print and etch, solder mask, all the way back to tooling. This can result in reduced material released for orders and higher first-pass yields, with the final goal being increased revenue to the bottom line. Don't bet on the order getting through ET, but rather embrace the feedback, tweak the process, reduce the scrap at the cause, and know the products are heading for ET to get certified and not entered into the certification lottery. Increasing the profitability and driving out waste requires a team approach to encom- passing more areas than just the root-cause area. We all need to check our egos at the door and work the problem. Just because we own a process doesn't mean it's perfect. Repetition begets monotony, and sometimes, new input or outside review may identify the new way or solution. Remember, we are all on the same team in the end. PCB007 Todd Kolmodin is VP of quality for Gardien Services USA and an expert in electrical test and reliability issues. To read past columns or contact Kolmodin, click here. Dick Crowe and Kurt Palmer, president and CEO of Burkle North America, discuss Kurt's career history into his present role, equipment the company is exhibiting on the show floor, and the excitement about seeing a younger workforce at IPC APEX EXPO 2020. Click on the image to view this video. Kurt Palmer on His New Role, the Show, and a Younger Workforce

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