April 6, 2011
Semblant Releases the SPF(TM) Solution
The Plasma Coating & Surface Finish Deemed Product of the Future
Chandler AZ -- Semblant Limited has announced the release of the Semblant Plasma Finish (SPF), its first solution in what will be an extensive portfolio of plasma coatings. SPF is a versatile PCB and substrate surface finish that has extraordinary properties.
SPF is a nano-coating that is truly disruptive. The SPF material has properties that include solder through, exceptional solderability, ultra-corrosion resistance, flux containment, creep corrosion suppression and has a modifiable surface energy. It's as good as gold or silver and, in many ways, much better.
The SPF Solution uses as little as 10% of the energy consumed by a nickel/gold line*, generates no hazardous waste and has no water consumption. The SPF process contains no carcinogens (unlike the metal finishes) and is safe in process and final material. Because it is a nano-coating, the material consumption is infinitesimal compared to any other finish process.
The SPF Solution includes the plasma system required to deposit the material. The system is geared to high volume production but can be used in prototype and low volume production as well. Developed with Nordson March, the plasma system is named the SPF ProVIA system and has a 350,000 panel per year throughput capability.
"The release of the SPF Solution changes everything," said Steven Lowder, CEO of Semblant Limited. "First, this product is the most versatile finish ever produced for the printed circuit board industry. Second, it is truly economical especially when compared to the precious metal finishes currently in use. And third, although the deposition technology is extremely sophisticated, we've made the operation of the ProVIA SPF machine very simple. It is, in fact, a one button operation. And finally, this is the most environmentally friendly solution of its type in existence. We are very proud to be introducing SPF(TM) to the printed circuit board market."
A number of large OEMs and PCB Fabricators have been given the opportunity to evaluate the SPF(TM) Solution. Commenting on Semblant's SPF finish, David Hillman, Rockwell Collin's Principal Material & Process Engineer stated, "In a collaborative testing program, Semblant and Rockwell Collins demonstrated the uniquely robust solderability characteristics of Semblant's SPF finish. Test vehicles were conditioned for four hours at 150C and then tested in accordance with the IPC-JSTD-003 specification. Test results revealed no degradation or impact of the severe conditioning of the immersion silver or bare copper printed wiring board finishes. Rockwell Collins is currently evaluating the Semblant's SPF finish for a number of printed wiring board and assembly applications." SPF meets the 12 month shelf life standard as defined by J-STD-003, and has demonstrated excellent soldering performance after further accelerated aging testing as well.
Industry guru and technology inventor Robert Tarzwell added, "SPF is truly a product of the future that is ready for high volume production today. The uses for this product will extend far beyond printed circuit board technology. For an industry that has been technologically-stalled for decades, Semblant's SPF Solution will allow the OEMs and fabricators to solve todayís material-based problems with clean technology that is free from all of the hassles of the metal based solutions. With gold and silver prices continuing to rise, Iím glad that Semblant has developed this alternative."
Semblant's SPF can be seen in the Christopher Associates booth at APEX in Las Vegas this April.
Note: * Based on simulations of the SPF ProVIA system in operation at high volume and compared against energy consumption figures published by the US EPA in the PWB Surface Finishes Cleaner Technologies Substitutes Assessment.
SPF and ProVIA SPF are trademarked proprietary names
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