June 27, 2020
Convergence in device manufacturing
Since we introduced our next-generation in-line systems back in 2018, these have been (obviously) available in in-line formats – simply put, by dividing a manufacturing process into appropriate tasks, one can daisy-chain correspondingly task-optimized production cells to form part of, or even an entire production line. At the same time, and true to our ‘Lab to Fab’ maxim, these same systems can be laid out as stand-alone production cells for use in R&D, for semi-automatic and for low-volume manufacturing, or for product/process development.
As an in-line system they are of course feeder, conveyor, magazine or ‘whatever else’ capable in order to maintain flow, timing and buffering between cells and across the entire line. Imagine buffering hundreds or thousands of components in a fully automated holding system in order to allow, for example, an epoxy to cure, or for UV light flooding, but still maintaining throughput of multiple completed devices per minute, and naturally all of which had been de-buffered in the right order. And all of this without manual intervention.
Due the ever greater use of integrated photonic components, it will not come as a surprise to learn that the world of LiDAR, sensing and datacom/telecom is converging. Certainly, from an assembly & test machine manufacturer’s perspective, this is great news, as this opens up pathways to standardization, thus also leaner manufacturing and increased system reliability.
For ficonTEC, the buffering feature mentioned above combined with full compliance with a). (other) volume manufacturing requisites and b). device convergence, means that we are in exactly the right spot. We are already heavily involved in developments in all of the sectors named previously, and our systems have long been co-packaged-optics-ready. That, in combination with our capability in ‘test-&-qualify’ of PICs, lasers, etc., places ficonTEC effectively as THE one stop shop for all things #photonics_assembly_and_test.