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How to make a motherboard (GIGABYTE Nanping Factory Tour)

By: Steven Bassiri | Editorials in Motherboards | Posted: Jun 23, 2015 2:12 pm

The SMT Line

 

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Recall this slide from the previous page on the 10x SMT lines present at Nanping. It shows some of the machines used to mount and solder on SMD components. After the PCB is received from another factory, the first step is to print solder paste onto the motherboard so that later on the components can be soldered; GIGABYTE uses Fuji's GPX for this. The next step is to mount components like the resistors, and for this three lines of Fuji NXT II High Speed mounters are used and seven lines of Fuji CP7 and QP3 are used. There are different mounters because there are many different types of SMDs.

 

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GIGABYTE takes many precautions before we are even allowed to board the bus to the factory. First of all, everyone's temperature was taken to make sure none of us were sick and when we reached the front doors of the factory, our hands were sprayed with a disinfectant to ensure we didn't bring in any foreign pathogens on our skin. Upon entering the factory, we were given booties to wear over our shoes to make sure no dirt gets into the production facility, and before entering the SMT production area, we had to go into a shower. This isn't your typical shower; instead it blows streams of pressurized air to remove any loose particles on our bodies and clothing. Since this isn't a facility where wafers and other microscopic circuits are produced, there is no need for full bodysuits.

 

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SMD components are extremely vulnerable to the elements and static shock, so they are either stored in temperature controlled containers or come in sealed reels that don't touch the air until they are already inside the mounting machine.

 

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This line has the Fuji NXT II high speed mounters which mount ICs and components of many sized.

 

 

This is a video of an automated SMD placement device. In this case, it is placing MLCCs (multilayer ceramic capacitors) which reside inside the CPU socket and help reduce ripple and noise. These are very tiny components; precision and accuracy are of the utmost importance and the device automatically checks each placement optically.

 

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These are other Fuji mounting machines which work at an incredibly fast rate.

 

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This is the reflow soldering machine, the Heller 1913 MK III Reflow oven, which applies heat to the SMDs allowing for the pre-applied solder paste to solder the SMDs to the motherboard.

 

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This O-Tek machine takes images of the SMDs after soldering to ensure solid contact and evaluates soldering quality. Two employees evaluate the PCH contacts.

 

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The machine on the left is an SMD tester which makes physical contact with the board's SMD connections and runs tests to ensure proper operation. On the right is the manual inspection of the SMT process results for an X99-UP4P with a motherboard stencil. Next the boards are sent to the DIP line.

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