Using Conformal Coating in Contract Electronics Manufacturing for Reliable, Long-Lasting Systems

Electronics are used in a wide range of applications, and because of this, they are exposed to many different environmental conditions. From humid basements to dusty fields, a variety of electrical components and assemblies must face harsh surroundings in the long term. However, because of the fragile nature of the vast majority of electronics, protective measures must be taken to keep electrical systems functioning at peak efficiency despite extended exposure to potentially-damaging factors. At RiverSide Electronics, our team of expert Engineers and Technicians provide contract electronics manufacturing services for well-protected assemblies that hold up to rugged outdoor conditions and other harsh environments.

Manufacturing ruggedized electronics that can withstand the many damaging elements of their surrounding environments is a process that requires specific treatment operations. Our contract electronics manufacturing services meet those requirements with comprehensive protective procedures, including conformal coating.

 

What It Is

Conformal coating is a critical treatment for electronics that need to withstand harsh environments. Primarily, conformal coating is used to protect widely used components like printed circuit boards, but it can be utilized to ruggedize a wide range of additional electronic components.

 

How It Works

A conformal coating on electronics is exactly what it sounds like: a coating of specific material that is conformed to the exterior shape of a component. RiverSide uses a thin polymeric film sprayed over a printed circuit board surface. This film is applied in less than 250 micrometers thickness, and the majority of our conformal coatings are applied as transparent for easier inspection and use of the electronics. While most often composed of acrylic, urethane, or silicone, the components of our coatings vary depending on what environments the coated components will be exposed to as well as the components themselves. Our processes coat and protect an assembly with silicone or urethane compound fillers.

 

What It Does

First and foremost, conformal coatings protect printed circuit boards and full assemblies from dust, moisture, fumes, and many other external factors. To some degree, coatings also protect components against harmful temperatures. The additional compound fillers also provide secondary protection from vibrations, corrosion, force shock, and other stressors. Working together, conformal coatings and compound fillers protect an assembly from a wide range of environmental damage.

 

RiverSide ensures that its ruggedized electronics are capable of standing up to extreme environments for extended periods without compromising quality and function. To learn more about conformal coating and other ways we work to ruggedize electronics, call RiverSide Electronics at (507) 523-3220, or contact us online for more information about our contract electronics manufacturing.

Understanding the Role of Ruggedized Electronics and Two Protection Options

In today’s modern world, we all rely on electronics for the vast majority of our day-to-day lives. From cell phones to cars, electronics find a place in almost every moment of our day as individuals as well as in commercial and industrial operations. Because of their comprehensive prevalence, electronics must meet a broad range form and function. However, because electrical systems and devices are vulnerable to damages from many sources both natural and manmade, it’s necessary to put as much thought into the construction of electronic casing as into the electronics themselves. This is why RiverSide Electronics is dedicated to the engineering and production of ruggedized electronics that stand up to a range of extreme conditions.

 

Ruggedized electronics are designed to prevail in the long-term even when exposed to severe winds, dust, dirt, rain, snow, ice, and extreme temperatures. For outdoor applications, ruggedized electronics are the most reliable option to maintain a long-lasting function.

 

How do we help electronic assemblies withstand extreme outdoor environments? Two options are with potting and conformal coating.

 

Potting

 

Potting involves filling a complete electronic assembly with a compound material like silicone rubber gels or epoxy resins. This protects the assembly from vibrations, shock, and elements like moisture and dust.

 

Consistently potting electronic assemblies is critical for protecting them. However, with so many variables involved, such as resin temperature, dispensing speed, and mixing ratios, effective potting can be a challenge. Luckily, the experts at RiverSide have a wealth of experience in potting electronics to help them withstand the harshest conditions.

 

Conformal Coating

 

While potting protects electronic assemblies, conformal coating helps to protect printed circuit boards (PCB) and their components. Conformal coating is a thin polymeric film that covers the PCB to protect it against extreme temperatures and airborne contaminates like moisture, chemicals, and dust. Because conformal coating is thin, it adds minimal weight while still protecting and insulating the PCB.

 

With our expertise and extensive ruggedized electronics capabilities, your assemblies can withstand the harshest conditions.  We can provide protective options that best apply to any particular application in the environment that your device will be exposed to and operating within. From the bilge of a boat to a coal fired power plant, we can help your electronic assemblies thrive. To learn more about our ruggedized electronics, contact RiverSide Electronics at (507) 523-3220 today.

 

 

 

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