5 Pointers for Comparing Printed Circuit Board Manufacturers

Printed circuit boards (PCBs) are extremely important and relevant in the electronics and appliance industries. A PCB collects the electronic elements of a product using conductive products that are usually etched on a “non-conductive” substrate. Naturally, PCBs are used extensively in production of many products, including regular consumer goods. All kinds of active devices and components, including resisters and capacitors, are usually soldered to the board.

If you are looking to place an order for your business and want to find a reliable printed circuit board manufacturer, there are a few aspects that you need to note.

1. First things first, check if the manufacturer is well known in the industry. Ask relevant questions like – How long have you been in business? Who are your clients? How many batches or orders do you handle each month? Can you share a few references? A company that has been around for a long time will never shy away from offering references. They will also do what it takes to convince their new and prospective clients. You can also check their website to find a few more relevant details.

2. Check the prices. Don’t be surprised, there are reliable manufactures who can offer low-priced circuit boards without compromising on the quality. They also ensure fast and quick delivery for their clients on request. However, be careful when you choose a service, because there are a few quality standards that must be met. Check if the concerned company has the required certifications, which can vary in some countries.

3. Know their clients. As mentioned earlier, you need to know the industries and clients that a company services. Check if they have worked for the military and some of the other bodies of the government. If they have supplied their products to known firms and electronic companies, it is like an assurance that they will never ever fool around with the quality. If you get references, call a few of them or write an email asking about their experiences.

4. Do not ignore customer service, it is extremely important when ordering PCBs. You need a manufacturer who is around to take questions or concerns and handle them quickly and accurately. It is important to be careful about customer service and whereabouts of the company, because some of them are just brokers and are making money by selling low-quality PCBs to customers.

5. Can they handle specific requirements? PCB requirements can vary, and you need a team that has the capacities to meet different production needs. They must be willing to take up production challenges, and it is not enough to claim things, unless they prove things. You can place a small order for custom PCBs to know more about their commitment towards customization, timely delivery and pricing.

Top Tips to Choose the Best Connectors

From smart phones to sophisticated machineries that manufacture them, you can find an electrical connector in many forms. If you are an electrical industrialist or purchase engineer, it is essential to have some key factors in mind before making your final choice.

Here are a few essential aspects to check while choosing a connector:

Power

Power of the connector is a determining factor. The market offers a wide range of connectors with different power-ratings. Identify your requirement and choose the one that meets the purpose.

A low power variant may not give you the expected efficiency and on the other hand, a high power connector can even damage the entire system.

Density

The density of a connector is yet another influential factor in the present day. The higher the connector density, the more compact your machine design will be. This is especially important in case of complex machineries. In order to keep it solid at the same time give exceptional performances, it is essential to choose a high-density connector.

Temperature Resistance

Another important feature that adds to the quality of a connector is its capacity to withstand high temperatures. Most of these connectors are used in intricate machineries and they undergo immense heat exposure during their functioning. High-end connectors are often passed through multiple levels of testing to ensure its temperature resistance.

Speed

The transmission speeds of connectors are quite significant for their overall performance. Many of the latest connectors ensure to meet high transmission speeds.

Mating Features

The mating features of any connector play an important role in determining its performance, quality and durability. Before you choose your connector, ensure that you scout through specifications to analyze its mating features. The angle of mating, the number of mating cycles, etc. will be clearly mentioned in the specifications, which help to find the one matching your requirements. Mating cycles are especially important for connectors that are mated and unmated frequently. For a USB connector the mating cycles will be in thousands where as for a board to board connector will have a lesser mating cycle.

3 Basic Types of Electrical Connectors

Any electrical equipment will have different types of electrical connectors within. Each connector comes in different shapes, sizes, and materials. Function is another key factor that classifies the connectors.

From connecting a wire to a board to joining key elements on a PCB, connectors play diverse roles and serve many applications. Despite their simple design, they connect and bring power/signals to the system. Key factors that determine the quality of a good connector is its reliability, signal integrity, speed performance, power rating durability, and ease of assembly.

Connector manufacturers offer an extensive array of tried and tested product solutions.

There a few common connectors which are worth the mention:

8P8C Connector

8P8C connector, where 8P8C stands for “eight positions, eight conductors” have eight positions, with corresponding conductors in the mating socket assigned to each. It is basically a modular connector and was primarily used in telephone wire applications. Today, they serve many applications and functions like being used to interface Ethernet jacks.

The 8P8C connectors have a male plug and a corresponding female socket connection. It carries eight contacts and when they get aligned with the corresponding eight conductors within the sockets, electrical signals get transmitted. Apart from Ethernet and telephone wires, they are also used in computer applications and other communication cables.

Generally, most modular connectors are technically named after the number of positions and conductors. They include sizes like -4-,-6-, 8-, and -10-. For instance, a 10P8C will have ten positions with eight conductors.

D-Subminiature Connectors

D-subminiature is much similar to 8P8C, as they are used in computer and play a critical function on modems. Though the name states “subminiature”, these are larger than most modern computer connectors. The connector has a D-shaped metal component that defines its shape and protects it. It also consists of two or more rows of pins with varying numbers in the male connector and a similar set of receiving ends in the female part. The male connector with a pin is called a plug whereas the receiving part that houses the contacts that connect these pins is called a socket. This connection is established to transmit electrical signals. This variant has the capability to provide protection against electromagnetic interference, commonly known as EMI.

USB Connectors

USB or Universal Serial Bus is a very common type of connector. They are small interfaces used to attach multiple devices to a computer. You can see at least two USB ports in any standard laptop that support external USB connectors and cables, while desktops have up to 4 USB ports in general. USB connectors gained much popularity and recognition, as it can be connected and disconnected easily while the device is still working. This contributed to its widespread use in computer applications that constantly require plugging and unplugging external devices, especially for transferring data.

Economical And Eco-Friendly Solution For Heat Exchanger Fouling

The problems related to heat exchanger fouling and scaling as well as their economic and environmental impact are commonly known as fouling and include both organic and inorganic deposits, also referred to as scaling. There are a number of various types of fouling that can be distinguished depending on application, environment and water quality.

A loose, gelatinous amorphous deposit will usually form in heat exchangers, which tends to harden on the surfaces being heated. This will often result in pitting provoked by local deposits forming galvanic cells. To remedy this situation, numerous means and processes are employed. In their essential structures, these processes such as acid treatment and mechanical cleaning can be classified as intermittent and continuous. Yes, they are very effective, however, in principle, they require for the system operation to be interrupted. Furthermore, between the pertinent heat exchanger cleaning operations a period of reduced heat transfer efficiency has to be considered.

The continuous process include the processing of cooling water by constant addition of chemicals, in order that the formation or adherence of abrasive materials as well as the application of sponge balls, are among the methods gaining more ground in the last few years. However, to guarantee an optimal equipment performance at minimal energy cost without interrupting operations, an automatic tube cleaning system such as the innovative Eqobrush should be considered in heat exchanger cleaning.

The beauty of an automatic tube cleaning system is the simplicity of its process. The brush cleaning system consists of two catch baskets and one brush for each heat exchanger tube. By reversing the direction of the cooling water flow, the brush is pressed through the tube and at the other end it is accepted by the basket. When the cooling water stream is diverted again in the normal direction, the brush will then return into the catch basket located at the delivery end, the inner walls of the tubes thus being cleaned now.

The cleaning action of the brush makes it possible to remove loose, gelatinous deposits from the internal surface of the tube without any restriction and hard deposits, tending to adhere more strongly, will not even the opportunity to form. Moreover, sludge accumulations or other contaminations will be avoided as well.

The prevention of build-up and fouling in the equipment has a number of advantages such as:

• Reduce overall fouling related cost.
• Electric energy consumption in chiller condensers.
• Fossile energy consumption in industrial heat exchangers due to efficient heat transfer.
• Energy consumption in system pumps.
• Minimization of scheduled and unscheduled downtimes.
• Save water in the cooling tower.
• Save chemicals on manual cleaning.
• Equipment lifetime extension.
• Reduction of Capex for new projects.

The decision-making process on fouling can be driven by the need to solve an acute and recurring problem in the production. A heat exchanger or condenser subject to excessive fouling with the need to be serviced or manually cleaned in between scheduled turnaround moments will obviously benefit from on-line cleaning and the economic advantages are not likely to be challenged.

New Technologies: A Solution to Improve Profitable Growth

The quick pace of technological advancements explains clearly why manufacturers focus on getting innovative products to market. An insatiable drive for innovation creates a strain on companies and make them look constantly for new techniques to manufacture products. Taking this into account, how can you profitably satisfy your customers and grow your business? The following discussion will help you understand how you can achieve profitable growth when incorporating new technologies into your new and existing products.

Your customers always want to gain an edge from the latest technological updates no matter your customers are individuals or businesses. As a manufacturer, the only solution you have is to add new methods of production as efficiently and as quickly as possible and ensure on-time delivery. Innovative and modern manufacturing techniques can be associated with lighter materials, energy-efficient designs, faster processors, more efficient software or hardware features, etc.

A robust product lifecycle management system will enable you to integrate manufacturing processes, supply chain, and procurement. It will eventually lead to an increase in the efficiency of your business. Fundamentally, innovation means implementing something new to your business. It could be associated with:

Adding value to existing products and services in order to gain a competitive edge
Developing improved products and services to meet emerging consumer needs and requirements
Improving or replacing traditional business processes to materialize higher productivity and efficiency
Extending the functionality and quality of existing products

Before you invest in any technology, carry out a careful assessment to determine which industry-specific solutions are best suited to your business. From accounting and supply chain management to human resource and enterprise resource planning, you can find readily available and affordable manufacturing solutions. Every business has its own unique strengths and weaknesses. You need custom engineering and management solutions to meet your unique requirements.

In order to achieve sustainable growth, a business must carefully examine its sense of purpose and make sure the organization serves it well. An inspiring purpose is all about:

A strong engagement within a company and its stakeholders
Non-stop, pragmatic innovation
A consistent and constant sense of focus

Automation is the single most significant factor that can help manufacturers meet their production and growth objectives. Automated machines, industrial robots, intelligent sensors and control systems, advanced quality control (QC) systems are few examples of innovative manufacturing techniques.

If you want to build a scalable business, you have to understand how critical it is to build and implement efficient machines capable of operating intelligently and independently. The right technology can dramatically improve how you manage your business. Consult a reputable manufacturing and engineering solution provider in order to eliminate complexities and inefficiencies from your production system and achieve profitable growth.

Compressed Air and Its Uses

Compressed Air

Compressed air has many uses in the industry. Compressing air is an effective means of storing energy and transporting it over large distances.

Some of the applications of are:

As a source of energy to drive machines and pneumatic tools, which are smaller than electrically driven tools.

In Shot blasting applications
In Spray painting
In control systems. compressed air is widely used in the petrochemical industry where electric power cannot be used due to the risk of fire.
In Braking systems in trains.
In Refrigeration
In spray cans such as those used in perfumes and other sprays.
In cleaning

Pneumatic Tools

Pneumatic tools are tools which are driven by air. In these tools, compressed air from a cylinder is made to pass through a control valve which is operated by the user. The air is then passed through a small turbine which generates rotary motion. This rotary motion is used to drive a shaft.

This rotary motion can be used for drilling or grinding purposes. The air is then drained through an outlet.

Advantages

It is easily available

Tools can be smaller than electric tools.

These tools can develop high torque

They can be used in environments where there is a risk of fire

They are not affected by temperature

They are clean and do not leave any residue

It can be guided easily through small tubes wherever required.

Disadvantages

They are noisy

Leakages occur frequently

Air should be dried properly otherwise there can be condensation.

Positive Displacment Compressors

Positive displacement compressors suck a specific quantity of air into a cylinder. The piston then compresses it. The output of a positive displacement compressor is always.

Examples of positive displacement compressors are Reciprocating Piston compressors, Rotary Screw compressors, Scroll compressors and Rotary Vane compressors.

Positive displacement compressors can build very high pressures. The downsides are high noise, lesser efficiency, leakages from the seals and frequent maintenance.

Single and Double acting compressors

In single acting compressors, air is drawn and compressed on only one side of the piston. When the piston moves down, the suction valve opens and air enters the cylinder. When the piston moves up, at the end of the compression, the discharge valve opens and the compressed gas is released.

The other side of the piston is connected to the crankshaft.

In a double acting compressor, air is drawn and compressed on both sides of the piston. The piston is operated by a connecting rod through an airtight seal. There are compression chambers on both sides of the piston and a set of suction and discharge valves

Deciding Between Domestic or Foreign Manufacturers

If a company wants their new product to be mass produced and sold to the public, they have to decide where and how to have it manufactured, since this is critical to the success of their business. They should consider several factors in deciding between US-based and overseas manufacturers.

Depending on the company’s product and needs, they can make a decision based on the things offered by local or foreign manufacturers.

Domestic Sourcing

If the company has a specialized, in-demand product that has to be delivered right on schedule, it would be best to choose domestic sources. Products manufactured in the US have high standards in labor and manufacturing, making sure of a good work environment, safe employees and most importantly, a better quality product. This is critical as compared to the disasters that happen at overseas factories. This makes it a more ethically sound choice, and lets the company stay away from public relations disasters – like for example, a poor working conditions expose.

In addition, local manufacturers maintain strict intellectual property right protections, meaning, no one can copy or mass produce it. All Americans speak English, so there is no language barrier that will cause confusion in terms of communications.

Since there are no customs and shipping time, it will be faster to ship orders. In case there are any problems, it will be easy to meet with the manufacturer in person.

Lastly, choosing a domestic manufacturer lets a company use a valuable marketing tool such as the “Made in the US” stamp.

The disadvantage of choosing domestic sourcing has something to do with the costs involved. US labor laws require higher wages, plus better facilities, as compared to other countries, increasing the expenses on payroll and infrastructure.

Foreign Sourcing

Overseas manufacturers are a lot cheaper than domestic manufacturers. Labor costs could be reduced up to 80%. The money that can be saved can be channeled towards product marketing and development.

A number of countries have given incentives like lower taxes and less regulations/red tape to attract more companies. This will enable them to quickly begin operations and scale the business whenever necessary.

Also, there is a large number of workers who are willing to work for much lower wages. This minimizes production delays since employees are always readily available.

However, there are also a number of issues with foreign manufacturers. A lot of discerning consumers consider them inferior when in comes to quality, and some countries have few intellectual property protections, which pose a risk for businesses. Moreover, shipping can take weeks or months instead of days because of the long process of customs and importation.

Finally, the decision depends on a company’s manufacturing requirements. Since there are several companies and different products, there is no right answer. Companies have their own unique needs and goals. Is the company selling a highly-specialized or a time-sensitive product which needs to be produced on a reliable timeframe?

There are many factors to take into consideration when making the best choice for a business, so companies should not choose the cheapest alternative, but rather the manufacturer that will give the most value in the long run.

Shot Blasting Machine: What You Need To Know

Shot blasting is a technique used to clean, fortify (strengthen) or polish metals. The method is used in virtually all industries that use metals such as automotive, construction, foundry, aerospace and several others. The question arises, how is shot blasting carried out? A machine (shot blasting machine) comes to our rescue. The machine strongly blasts the metal under processing to remove such impurities as rust, scale and welding slag.To efficiently carry out its job, the shot blasting machine is composed of components that each carry out a particular function as explained below:-

The Blast Wheel

The blast wheels are a critical spare part of blasting equipment. A blast wheel produces the centrifugal force required to project the abrasive particles. The rate of work and kind of job affect the number of wheels that are installed on the blasting machine.

Cabinet

The cabinet is a closed booth free of vibration, and it is made of steel. It is lined with a wear resistant liner, usually an Mn alloy. The cabinet provides an environment where the abrasive particles (traveling at high speeds of 50 – 100m/s) can be treated.

Work Handling

This component varies greatly from machine to machine, as it directly depends on the following two factors; the type of machine you are using and the size and quality of the particles to be obtained in the end. For example, roller conveyor type shot blasting machine is designed for heavy-duty beams, steel profile and fabricated work pieces.

Elevator

The abrasive recovery system is recovered at the lowest end of the shot blasting machine cabinet and linked to the screw conveyor on the base of the elevator (which also carries the separator). The elevator is a critical part since it’s malfunction will translate to low production rates of the shot blasting machine. It thus requires constant maintenance.

Air Separator

The principal goal of the separator is to clean is to clean the abrasive particles origination from the blast wheel. When abrasive metal particles enter the blast wheel, they must be rid of all contaminants as the cleaning makes the shot blasting machine work efficiently.

Dust Collector

As the name implies, the work of this component is to collect dust during the blasting process. The dust originates from the cabinet ventilation and separator. It usually creates laden air creating an avenue for environmental pollution and the potential health risk to the workers in working in the industry. To curb the problems, the user of the machine should assure proper work to the dust controller.

The importance of this machines can’t be stressed enough. The significance is explained by their widespread use in the machinery world. However, users need to fully understand the annals of shot blasting machine for them to harvest the power at their disposal fully. Proper knowledge will also ensure that minimal (if any) environmental pollution is caused, and consequently reduced health risks to workers in a given industry.

Invention Blueprints

Patent Drawings

Patent drawings are one of the most important and key features required from the USPTO while an Inventor files for a patent. These invention blueprints, or patent drawings consist of dimensions, views, and other information to help relate not only the inventions look, but also its functionality. CAD is the tool in most cases that is used in order to design patents. Any Inventor should definitely familiarize themselves with CAD because it is a staple within any type of design now a days, and especially within Inventions and prototype design.

CAD Designers

Invention designers or CAD designers are the ones who actually manipulate CAD software into creating something known as a 3D model. 3D models are used for several different things, and invention blueprints as well as patent drawings are just a few. These complex design files hold all the necessary information to instruct machines that manufacturer rapid prototypes and inventions how to operate. These CAD files are extremely diversified in the sense that one 3D model can perform several task. In the end if an Inventor chooses the right Invention Designer this fact will permit them to save money by purchasing more than one service from the invention design company.

3D Modeling Services

The majority of 3D modeling services perform only certain types of design in which inventions and prototypes are not usually within. 3D modeling services will generally only perform design task such as architectural work, mechanical, electrical, or some specialty field. If you’re interested in finding a CAD design service who specializes in invention design, your best bet would be to search online. Invention design services are out there, but if you’re not careful it’s easy to get mixed up with the wrong one who can turn your patent mission into a complete nightmare.

CAD Prototype

So within the first steps an Inventor takes they are normally notified that they will need a CAD Prototype. Unless an Inventor creates the prototype from hand a CAD file will surely be needed. In all reality when someone thinks of the word prototype they normally associate a high dollar amount for cost with it. Really this is the furthest thing from the truth if you can find an honest invention design service or rapid prototype service to perform your needs. Really an Inventor should look for one service to not only design the prototype, but also make the prototype. If found this service should produce reduced cost to the Inventor since they are purchasing more than one service from them.

Purpose of Tensile Testing and Its Use in the Plastic Industry

One of the most elementary tests that can be performed on a product is the tensile test to check the breaking resistance of a product. A test specimen is kept under tension to practice opposing forces acting upon opposite faces both located on the same axis that attempt to pull the specimen apart. These tests are simple to set and complete and reveal many characteristics of the products that are tested. These tests are measured to be fundamentally the reverse of a compression test.

Purpose of this test

Usually, this test is designed to run until the specimen breaks or fails under the specific load. The values that are calculated from this type of test can vary but are not limited to tensile strength, elongation, ultimate strength, modulus of electricity, yield strength, and strain hardening. The measurements taken during the test reveal the characteristics of a material while it is under a tensile load.

Tensile Testing for Plastics

Composites and Plastic are polymers with substances added to improve the performance or reduce costs. Plastic may be pressed or cast or extruded into sheet, film, or fibre reinforced plate, glass, tubes, fibre, bottles and boxes. Thermohardening or thermosetting plastics can be brittle or hard and temperature resistant. Thermosets include polyester resins, epoxy resins, polyurethane, phenolic resins, non-meltable, non-deformable and polyurethane. Polymers and plastics can be tested to measure product quality. The tests measure the weight required to split or break a plastic test material and sample elongation or stretch to that breaking load. The resulting data help to identify product quality and quality control checks for materials.

Plastic testing instruments, universal test machines provide a constant rate of extension because plastic tensile test behaviour is dependent on the speed of the test machine. The specimens loaded on the machines are set as per ASTM, DIN, ISO tensile test specimen dimensions. The Plastic tester machine should always rely on standard terms and conditions. As per ASTM D638, Plastic tensile test standards help to measure strain below 20 percent extension values. High strain can be measured by the machine, digital reader. Thin sheet sample testing is done as per the standard ASTM D882.

A high-quality testing machine is designed to measure the strength of a specific product, test method and product type. A good instrument can be the only solution required for your quality assurance and a worse choice can make you go in the loss too. So choose the instrument smartly.