Fiber optic solder joint inspection system

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The Westinghouse Electric Corp. patent solves the following problem:

Automated inspection of solder joints, especially those used in printed circuit boards, has become more important in the proliferation of automatic electronic assembly technologies. In person visual inspection that was very cost effective and more reliable for time consuming microscopic inspection required for most of the thousands of solder joints per board. A major part of the solder joint quality is the form of the joint surface. So the ability to automate the measurement of solder joint shape and detect defects in form is a great need for a fully automated system. Current progress to automated inspection includes the development of Optical non-contact inspection systems can very accurately measure system but it is fairly complicated.

Our analysis of this patent is as follows:

Westinghouse Electric Corp.’s patent US 4876455 A deals with Fiber optic solder joint inspection system.
invention is an automated solder joint inspection system for determining the quality of a specular soldered joint by examining the shape of the joint surface using a series of point light source and the associated highlight reflections from the joint surface. The light from the source point of light, which is directed to the solder joint, so in a pattern of the solder joint in a battle of light responsive transducers, such as a camera, somewhere. Using intensity values ​​from the light responsive transducer forest, a two map grid generated for reflections from each point light source. Using known about the surface of the solder joints with curve fitting techniques, a series of grid maps be mathematically translated to the solder joint surface. A rule-based system, by comparing the acceptable solder side joint face, examined and described in the joint for an acceptable determination.

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