Jet Dispenser Applies Epoxy Underfill Material for Hearing Aid Assembly
Protecting one’s hearing is always a smart thing to do. Hearing-aid manufacturer GN ReSound (GNR) believes that improving one’s hearing is just as smart.
Founded in 1943, GNR is among the world’s largest hearing-aid manufacturers. The company is based in Ballerup, Denmark, with production facilities in Præstø, Denmark. It distributes products in 80 countries, has offices in more than 25 and employs 4,100 people worldwide.
This past March, GNR released its smart LiNX2 hearing aid, an upgraded version of the LiNX model introduced in 2014. Both models are Bluetooth compatible and operate on 2.4 gigahertz, a globally accepted frequency band used by most cordless phones, video game consoles, home wireless networks and many common everyday wireless items.
However, the LiNX2 also features advanced binaural directionality, spatial sense and a tinnitus sound generator. Binaural directionality enables users to clearly understand each word spoken by others in conversation, even in difficult listening environments. With spatial sense, wearers are able to quickly identify sounds coming from behind or next to them. The sound generator provides relief to people suffering from tinnitus by generating pre-installed soothing background sounds.
Manufacturing LiNX hearing aids involves many processes. One of the most important is applying first and second level underfill for flip-chip packaging. Flip chips are an advanced form of surface mount technology in which bare semiconductor chips are turned upside down and bonded directly to a printed circuit board or chip carrier substrate.
The underfill material is usually a filled epoxy that counteracts the difference in coefficient of thermal expansion between the chip and board. Applying underfill dramatically increases the flip chip’s ability to withstand thermal cycling, but also adds dispense and cure steps to the manufacturing process.
Recently, GNR installed two inline Nordson Asymtek Spectrum II S2-922 systems to apply underfill accurately and at high speed. These systems complement the manufacturer’s offline coating systems and inline Axiom X-1000 dispensers, all of which are also made by Nordson.
“[Previously, we] dispensed underfill manually and offline,” says Elvin Solberg, manufacturing engineering manager for GN ReSound. “Dispensing it inline, however,
reduces manual handling and increases the uniformity, efficiency and yield of our surface-mount-device manufacturing.”
Nordson Asymtek has designed and manufactured precision automated fluid dispensing, conformal coating and jetting systems for more than 30 years. Its inline X-1000 dispensers meet midrange throughput requirements for high-accuracy application of high-viscosity solder paste and surface mount and electrically conductive adhesives.
The Spectrum II has a small footprint that makes it particularly well-suited for microelectronic, semiconductor and microelectromechanical system assembly. Its motion control system offers precise accuracy on the X, Y and Z axis. Options include single-axis tilt jetting, dual lane configuration and simultaneous dual-valve dispensing.
For more information on inline dispensing systems, call 800-279-6835 or visit www.nordsonasymtek.com.