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Latex Gloves – Are You Allergic?


Many industrial manufacturing environments require workers to wear protective gloves, including during electronics and medical device production and assembly. Latex gloves not only protect workers from harmful chemicals but also protect products from worker contact and contamination during manufacturing Read more

ST 925 SMT Rework System–Three favorites combined into one nice savings


Save a few steps--and some money--with the Pace 925 SMT Rework System Pace has introduced a new low-cost “combination” system ideal for surface mount technology (SMT) rework. It’s worth adding up the savings by comparing the a la carte prices Read more

Metcal’s CV-5200 Connection Validation Soldering Station Changes Everything


You may or may not have heard about Metcal’s new soldering station, the CV-5200. The evolutionary tool removes much of the reliance on visual inspection of hand-soldered joints and adds a second, more technology-driven method for validating a successful Read more

Today’s LED Assembly is More Than a Surface Issue

Posted on by Kathy S. in Technical Articles Leave a comment

Todays LED Assembly is More Than a Surface IssueWith all the hoopla surrounding LEDs and their longevity, is it any wonder why LED manufacturers are scrambling to extend the lives of painted or anodized aluminum components, ornamental brackets and lamp poles? While it’s common knowledge that adhesives and sealants help with these challenges, a lesser known solution lies in your surface treatment—the preparation of metal surfaces to extend the life of paint and to seal and protect the surfaces from corrosion.

Employing the right surface treatment technology has been known to double the long-term weather resistance of painted lamp bases and aluminum, street lamp poles. In fact, a large producer of public lighting structures recently reported a total savings of more than $100,000 a year in production and cleaning costs, treatment chemicals, energy and water usage as well as disposal costs.

Henkel’s BONDERITE EC² electro-ceramic coating process offers five to 10 times improved corrosion protection over older treatment methods and conventional paints. It also eliminates the need for surface pretreatment and one to two layers of paint. The environmentally-friendly process is responsible for substantial energy savings and waste reduction. Introducing this type of process into your operations is the next logical step, following the addition of integrated adhesives and sealants, to help today’s LED manufacturers achieve that sweet spot of peak efficiency.


Study Finds Brand Image a Top Motivator for Green Supply Chains

Posted on by Kathy S. in Green Initiative Leave a comment

Study Finds Brand Image a Top Motivator for Green Supply ChainsA new study finds 51 percent of supply chain executives in North America aren’t doing enough to impact the environment even with sustainability a designated strategic priority.

According to the sustainability report from West Monroe Partners, a business and technology consultancy, 36 percent of companies have immediate plans to incorporate sustainability into their operations and 22 percent are planning to do so within the next three years. It also found 12 percent of companies place no importance on green supply chain.

Brand image improvement is one of the top reasons why companies have implemented a program for green design. Other top reasons, following brand image, include innovation in products and processes, executive management decision, regulations and cost reductions.


World’s First Gas Sensor is Now Small Enough for Your Smartphone

Posted on by Kathy S. in IT News Leave a comment

The world’s first gas sensor small enough for any smartphone beats Apple’s new MEMS smartphone sensors at the MEMS Executive Congress 2015. World's First Gas Sensor is Now Small Enough for Your Smartphone

Cross-section of micro-hotplate

The sensor, manufactured by Cambridge CMOS Sensors Ltd. (U.K.), comprises 1-millimeter-square, MEMS-CMOS die that are inexpensive enough for mass appeal. Its hotplate-based gas sensors can scale to smaller sizes along with the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS) using the top metal oxide. Once the hotplate is heated, different gases can be sensed.

The CMOS sensors can be configured to sense volatile organic compounds (VOC) such as carbon monoxide from cheap heaters and formaldehyde in cheap furniture. The MEMS-CMOS design wins with the K-Phone and K-Free white-box smartphone that will be branded by Chinese carriers.

The sensors can also be used as a breathalyzer as drunk driving is a jail-sentence offense in China.


New Nano Step Makes Purifying Silicon Cheap

Posted on by Kathy S. in Industry News Leave a comment

New Nano Step Makes Purifying Silicon CheapWhile Silicon is the second most abundant element on earth, it’s usually not refined enough naturally for integrated circuits and solar cells. Silicon can be purified, but it’s expensive, dirty and not optimized for battery electrodes, thermoelectrics and solar cells. Now scientists from Nanjing University and Stanford University have developed a simple and inexpensive method to get 99.999 percent pure silicon from bulk ferrosilicon.

Nearly photovoltaic grade silicon starts with bulk silicon, which is milled to a nanoscale powder and purified with a strong mix of acids. The acids strip away oxygen and metal impurities, converting the material from 84 percent silicon by weight to 99.999 percent. This acid etching method has been around since WWII, but the method never received high purity because the particles have only just now been reduced to nano size. For this reason, a more expensive process for producing high purity—99.9999999—became the standard.

The new, inexpensive method isn’t this pure, which means it isn’t pure enough for today’s integrated circuits; however, it can achieve the level of purity needed for thermoelectric devices and battery electrodes. The process for making silicon that’s 99.999 percent pure or “five nines” costs about $1 per kilogram.


Global Cleanroom Technology Market Hits $3 Billion and Growing

Posted on by Kathy S. in Industry News Leave a comment

Global Cleanroom Technology Market Hits $3 Billion and GrowingThe global cleanroom technology market is worth an estimated $3 billion, according to a new report by Research and Markets, and is expected to reach $3.83 billion by 2020.

The rise in technological advancements in healthcare is a key driver in the growth of this segment. Other major drivers include a rise in safety concerns, healthcare expenditure, demand for quality products and the expansion of the pharmaceutical and biotechnological industries.

The report, Global Cleanroom Technology Market—Market Trends and Forecasts (2015-2020), finds the market is dominated by North America, followed by Europe. India and China will be the fastest-growing countries adopting cleanroom technology in the next five years, according to the report.

Cleanroom technologies are widely used in hospitals and medical device manufacturing as well as the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, plastic and food industries.