Ask The Expert: Mark Rager, Diamond MT, Subcontract Conformal Coating Service house on Key Conformal Coating Material Challenges

“It’s well known in the electronics industry that cleanliness of a Printed Wiring Board (PWB) is crucial to the assembly’s performance and reliability. What many don’t realise is that the cleanliness of the board is also paramount in adhesion of the conformal coating that may be applied to the board later in the process.”

“Almost all coating material suppliers recommend that you clean and dry the boards prior to coating. However, too often cost is a factor when determining if cleaning is needed. What many do not take into consideration is the affects this has on coating.”
“From a conformal coating house’s perspective this is a very real concern due in part to the compatibility issues that often come about when the coating to which the customer has selected does not adhere to the mold release agents, fluxes, oils, rosins (to name a few) that have been left behind in the manufacturing process. This makes the coating house look bad.”

“Further, its known that contamination of circuit boards can bring about severe degradation of insulation resistance and dielectric strength, which is counterproductive to what some of the characteristics/reasons that conformal coating is used for. You would not want to paint your car without preparing the surface? So then why would one want to do this to such critical/sensitive electronics which are being manufactured?”

“In general, the minimal added cost added for cleaning far outweighs the time and money (when added up) associated with the rework/touchup caused by dewetting issues, missed deliveries and aesthetically unpleasing conformal coating caused by touchup to areas that have dewetting caused in part to contamination on the board. Cleanliness of completed circuit boards is, therefore, of vital interest.”

Visit the Nexus Associate Experts Section and read what other experts have to say about conformal coating material challenges.

Nexus How To Select a Conformal Coating for your Printed Circuit Board

One of the most important issues that could arise, the selection of the right or wrong conformal coating can literally save or cost a fortune.The

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Nexus Conformal Coating Research Program

Nexus, an independent conformal coating resource company, have launched an Independent Conformal Coating Research Project starting in September 2012. Why should your company take part?
Nexus is conducting a world-first, independent analysis of the most popular commercially available conformal coating materials and combining the data with the various application methods used to apply them, to provide you an unparalleled level of knowledge and insight.
The Research Program will be structured over two years and broken into 3 phases. The Research Program will look at all areas of conformal coating, cleaning and related reliability.

Phase 1: Conformal Coating Materials and Equipment Benchmarking

In an effort to answer these questions and many more Nexus will begin Phase 1 of a full ongoing Research Program in August. This Research will identify the best conformal coating materials, conformal coating application processes and ultimately value for money for customers in the world of electronics printed circuit board protection.

  • Upon completion of the research you will know:
  • Whether your Conformal Coating Material is the best available for your application including well known acrylic, urethane, silicone liquid conformal coatings and parylene coatings.
  • Whether your application process is giving you the best results from your material
  • Whether there is a significant difference in protection provided by the various conformal coating equipment and application methods
  • Just how good the new environmentally friendly conformal coatings are
  • Optimise your commercial costs through using the right conformal coating materials and equipment
  • Which materials and processes you should be considering for your new projects

To find out more click Two Year Conformal Coating Research Program

Click here to find out Why you should take part in the Conformal coating Research Program.