SMT, PCB Electronics Industry News

SMT, PCB Electronics Industry News

News from KIC Thermal


KIC Introduces ProBot – The Profiling Robot That Perfects Your AOI and Batch X-Ray Inspection

Sep 28, 2012

 KIC today announced that the new ProBot will begin shipping effective October 2012. The ProBot automatically verifies whether each PCB is processed to specification in the reflow oven. The suspect PCBs then can be sent off to batch X-ray. Since the typical batch X-ray machine only inspects a fraction of all assembled PCBs, the ProBot allows for a more effective sampling.

The ProBot also complements AOI inspection because these machines cannot see the solder joints hidden below BGA and PoP component bodies. The ProBot’s software will store the relevant solder paste and component temperature tolerances and check that each PCB was processed in accordance with these process windows.

Neither X-ray nor AOI inspection can see the molecular structure of a solder joint, and, hence, cannot judge the soldering quality. A more complete quality inspection can be achieved when combined with the KIC ProBot, which will verify that the solder joints have been processed within the tolerances of both the component as well as solder paste specs. 

The ProBot is designed to fit virtually any reflow oven on the market. The product is highly modular, allowing each user to specify the desired features. There is no longer a need to pay for unnecessary or unwanted capabilities.

We have seen a significant increase in the market interest for automatic profiling systems over the last couple of years,” said KIC’s President Bjorn Dahle. “Profiling is one of the last manual tasks in the highly automated SMT line and it begs to be automated. The benefits include less scrap and rework, as well as improved process control, documentation and product quality. A less obvious benefit is the ProBot’s ability to complement the inspection process that already exists in the factory. The ProBot represents our latest generation of automated systems, while its modularity makes it an exceptionally cost-effective solution.”

For more information, visit www.kicthermal.com.


Based in San Diego, KIC is the industry leader in automated thermal management tools and systems for reflow, wave, cure and semiconductor thermal processes. The company pioneered the development of oven profilers and process optimization tools, and then worked to create the next generation of thermal systems to help manufacturers improve the thermal process quality while reducing cost.

In addition to KIC Explorer, products include the KIC RPI reflow process inspection system, the KIC Vision automatic profiling system and more. With the introduction of cutting edge tools, the company continues to stay on the leading edge of process optimization and automatic thermal management systems, and has won numerous industry awards.

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