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Guadalajara Technology Show 2022

Guadalajara Technology Show 2022

BPM partnered with Interlatin to bring a “Technology Trade Show” featuring the latest and most full-featured Automated Programmer on the Planet, the BPM310

  • BPM310 is the latest 10th Generation Automated Programmer from BPM Microsystems
  • Up to 6 fully universal programming sites with up to 48 sockets, producing the fastest programming times in the smallest footprint
  • Advanced features such as
    –WhisperTeach™,  BPM.NCRYPT, and on-the-fly vision alignment
    –UFS, Microcontrollers, Flash Memory, Complex Devices, etc
    –Chip-scale-package to the largest QFP, all at blazing speeds

General Overview
• Alignment camera, New Laser system, New teaching process using WisperTeach, Vacuum system, Other new features
• Common troubleshooting
• Best practices
— Tools recommended for sockets maintenance
— How to perform a correct programming site maintenance
— Teaching new components
— Considerations for eMMC and high-density memories
— Considerations for Cyber-Security requirements


Plus a Special “Happy Hour” session for Executives and Managers, covering high-level topics:

  1. How to determine the best technology to solve the programming problem (Why BPM?)
  2. How to create a rapid ROI analysis (Easy to handle = Less Risk of Failure)
  3. How to get the best response on support (How to avoid downtime = Higher productivity)

Thanks to all the technicians, managers, and directors who took time out of their busy schedules to spend a few hours learning more about offline device programming. Also, special thanks to Jim Villalvazo, Director, Fernando Islas, Regional Sales Manager, and Sofia Soto, Marketing with Interlatin. Representing BPM were Colin Harper, Director of Sales and Product Development, Penny Santhanam, Director of Customer Care, and Jose Romo, Field Services Engineer.

35 Years of NAND Flash Memory

35 Years of NAND Flash Memory

35 Years of NAND Flash Memory

2022 marks the 35th anniversary of the invention of NAND flash memory. NOR Flash memory was invented by Dr. Fujio Masuoka while working for Toshiba in 1984. NOR-based flash has long erase and write times but has a full address/data (memory) interface that allows random access to any location. This makes it suitable for the storage of program code that needs to be infrequently updated, such as a computer’s BIOS or the firmware of set-top boxes. Its endurance is 10,000 to 1,000,000 erase cycles. NOR-based flash was the basis of early flash-based removable media; Compact Flash was originally based on it, though later cards moved to the cheaper NAND flash.

NAND flash was born out of a joint venture with Samsung and Toshiba and followed shortly thereafter. It has faster erase and write times, higher density, lower cost per bit than NOR flash, and ten times the endurance. However, it is most suitable for mass-storage devices such as PC cards and various memory cards because of its sequential write and is less useful for computer memory.

BPM has been around slightly longer than NAND Flash and has developed solutions for some of the particular challenges of programming flash devices. See the Flash white papers below.

KIOXIA Celebrates the 35th Anniversary of Invention of NAND Flash Memory

 

SAN JOSE, Calif., February 10, 2022 – What do the MP3 players of the 1990s and today’s smartphones have in common? Neither would exist were it not for NAND flash memory, an innovation whose influence has reverberated throughout the decades. KIOXIA America, Inc. today announced that it has reached a new milestone – 2022 marks the 35th anniversary of the company’s invention of NAND flash memory.

NAND Flash Video

A new humorous video series from KIOXIA, that explores life without flash memory, kicks off with a look at cloud computing

Flash Memory White Papers

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Up-Time, Accuracy, and Waveforms

Up-Time, Accuracy, and Waveforms

Sweat the Details

Two metrics in device programming are super-important (but the third might be even more important). Here are several questions to ask:
  • What can I expect for up-time and utilization for my Device Programmer?
  • How does BPM ensure the highest quality and accuracy of finished programmed devices?
  • How does BPM deliver the cleanest waveforms? Why are clean waveforms important?

Up-Time/Utilization Rates

With routine maintenance and yearly calibration, BPM systems are designed for maximum uptime. Many factories worldwide run their Automated Programming Systems 6 days a week/3 shifts a day. For purposes of allocation, BPM recommends using an 85% utilization rate (but you may find it above 90% in actual use). BPM’s systems are easy to set up, especially compared to other comparable systems, making their utilization rate the best in class.

Accuracy

BPM ensures accuracy and repeatability for device programming In three main ways: Auto-teach, Vision Alignment, and Job Automation. All programming systems are highly repeatable– once they are set up, they will reliably repeat their program (even if it isn’t perfect). The trick is to start with a perfect setup, resulting in repeatable, reliable, and accurate yield.

A: Teach too high may cause misalignment. B: Teach too low may cause micro-fractures that oxidize over time. The device may pass the initial test only to fail in the field

WhisperTeach is BPM’s patented process to “auto-teach” the critical Z-height of input-output locations and sockets. You see, it’s easy, with a downward camera, to center the X/Y coordinates in the input/output and socket locations (and if you are off slightly, BPM’s on-the-fly vision centering auto corrects and auto centers). But there is no camera to precisely place and pick up the Z (up and down). Some locations are more difficult than others because of where in the machine they are. But even in the “easy” locations, a human operator can only see to about 45 microns (slightly smaller than the width of a human hair).  WhisperTeach is a major factor in BPM’s systems ease and speeds up set-up without sacrificing quality– it’s more accurate (within 15 microns) than a human operator, even a highly trained technician.

For on-the-fly vision alignment, BPM systems utilize a CyberOptics LNC-120 camera which precisely spins the device between the input/output location and the socket without requiring the system to slow down. This boosts DPH (Devices per Hour) without sacrificing quality. BPM’s systems can handle the smallest chip-scale packages in the industry (as small as 1mm x 0.5mm).

Finally, Job Automation allows multiple workflows to be stored and retrieved quickly. BPWin, BPM’s Process Software, calls this application JobMaster. It allows you to prepare programming jobs to meet precise specifications, and then save the jobs for future use for repeatable quality.

Waveforms

BPM’s programming site technology has its origins in test equipment. Everything, from the pin drivers to the gold-plated contacts on sites and sockets, is designed to deliver the cleanest waveforms. If you want to know more, read the Signal Integrity article here. For the short version, signal integrity delivers maximum quality and device life expectancy (you don’t want “device amnesia“).

Clean waveforms give you programming results that you can count on and the highest first-pass yields.

How BPM Handles World-Wide Supply Chain Shortages

How BPM Handles World-Wide Supply Chain Shortages

One Year Later, Supply Chain Shortages Continue

Last year, BPM did a three-part series on the supply chain crisis (see links at the end of this article). Originally affecting automotive manufacturers, it soon spread like wildfire to other industries as manufacturers vied for the diminishing inventories of critical parts and components. Nowadays, everyone is aware of higher prices, longer turn-around times, and empty store shelves. The situation is a mess, and we may be dealing with this “new normal” for the foreseeable future.

BPM Supply Chain Update

BPM Microsystems is in the same boat, so to speak, as the rest of the world. They are dealing with some critical shortages that are affecting future delivery (more on that below); fortunately, BPM took the supply chain crisis seriously, and early. In addition, there are some built-in factors that have helped weather this storm. Here’s a list of the main ways BPM has gotten ahead of supply chain shortages:

  1. Builds/maintains inventory for critical components and spares
  2. Develops multiple suppliers rather than a single source 
  3. Sources parts/materials from a variety of geographic regions, both domestic & international
  4. Has vertical manufacturing capability
  5. Controls design from top to bottom
  6. Utilizes common design architecture/software across multiple products

Here are some specifics.

Builds inventory

Automotive shortages started in the middle of 2020 as Covid-19 lockdowns were at their worst. BPM began to identify critical supplies and parts in the third quarter of 2020, updated inventory levels, and updated reorder thresholds. So far, only one programmer supply has been affected: the 1710 Manual Programmer. You can see updates on 1710 here. We currently have a small inventory available; to help in the short term, BPM has developed the 1710M (Military-spec version of 1710) that is available for delivery in the US only.

Multiple Suppliers, Multiple Geographical Sources

Identifying additional sources for critical inventory isn’t always easy, but it’s very important. Costs, minimum orders, and turn-around times vary, so it’s vital (when possible) to have options when it comes to parts. In the case of the 1710 programmer, it was a Microsemi FPGA that is only manufactured and distributed with a 52+ week lead-time. With all their other critical components, BPM was able to find suppliers.

BPM Distinctives

BPM has some “baked-in” manufacturing advantages, especially in light of the supply chain crisis. Vertical manufacturing: BPM’s manufacturing facility is located in their home office in Houston, Texas. They typically use generally available sourced components in their manufacturing process. Control design from top to bottom: All of BPM’s programmers and site technology is designed and manufactured on-site with globally-sourced parts. All of their designs and software are “locked-down” to ensure they cannot be reverse-engineered. This protects their intellectual properties. They also use common design architecture across multiple products, such as sites, sockets, and software. For instance, the 2900 Manual Programmer utilizes almost the same site technology as the 3901 and 3928 Automated Programmers (the only difference is the chassis and the stepper motors on the automated systems).

BPM Delivers

BPM continues to ship products in the face of the supply chain shortage. They utilize a first-in, first-out ordering process for back-ordered items; it is recommended to contact BPM in advance of your needed replacement or new product to ensure its timely delivery. In short, BPM is doing everything it can to deliver device programming solutions to you. 

To find out more, please contact BPM email or by phone: +1 (713) 263-3776 | Sales Toll-Free: (855) SELL BPM | 24/7 Service: +1 (832) 617-5702.


See more supply chain articles:

APEX 22 Live with Mike Konrad and Colin Harper

APEX 22 Live with Mike Konrad and Colin Harper

APEX 22 Live with Mike Konrad and Colin Harper

Mike Konrad is the founder of Aqueous Technologies, a manufacturer of automated cleaning and cleanliness testing systems designed for the electronic assembly industry, and has served as its CEO/CTO since 1992. Mike is the host of the Reliability Matters podcast, available on iTunes, Spotify, and spreaker.com.

Colin Harper is the Director of Sales and Product Marketing at BPM Microsystems.

This interview was originally live-streamed on January 26, 2022. The 3+ hour live stream is queued up to when Colin is interviewed.

APEX 22 First Day Notes

APEX 22 First Day Notes

BPM Microsystems is participating in IPC APEX 22 after the large trade show was canceled last year. Attendance, both from exhibitors and visitors is down from years past, but there is a lot of interest in solutions, especially related to supply chain issues. Manufacturers are looking for ways to mitigate loss and shorten production.

BPM brings what they are calling the “Most Powerful Universal Programmer on the Planet”– the BPM310 Automated Programmer. It is able to concurrently program up to 48 devices, including UFS, eMMC (HS400), microcontrollers, and thousands more. UFS programming is benchmarked at up to 440 megabytes per second read and 201 megabytes per second write, surpassing any other programmer currently on the market.

You will find BPM’s booth at 2920, right on the main entrance to the hall, through noon Thursday, January 27, 2022. Come see the BPM310 live.