Laser Evolved Etching Process: Forming & Finishing
Combining photo etching with other in-house manufacturing processes provides finished components, enabling customers to reduce their supplier base. Integrated Quality Systems (ISO 9001) ensure optimum quality consistency and provides complete material and process traceability.
Forming is achieved by using standard, modular, readily available or easily fashioned form tools, reducing the commercial risk, while shortening the lead times involved.
Components can also be formed without the expense of forming tools. This method is uniquely created when manufacturing the blank. During the process, a precision 'score' line is laid into the material, which is controlled in accuracy, depth and width.
This 'score' line act as the basis of the form, ensuring length and position, and in some instances enables the component to be formed by hand. This forming method does not create the same stresses as pressing and provides better co-planarity in components, such as RFI screening cans.
Wear Resistance / Surface Hardness
Modifications can be achieved through heat treatment or the deposition of hard coatings, such as nickel or chromium, nitriding CVD and ruthenium sputtering. Nickel/PTFE provides an inherent degree of lubricity.
Corrosion Protection / Solderability
From paint and powder coating to nickel and zinc cobalt, the range of available corrosion protective finishes is immense. Tin lead and tin coatings preserve solderability, and gold and palladium are used similarly for high reliability applications.
Grinding, polishing, linishing, vapour blasting and other post machining operations are available on request.
Conductivity / Insulation
Electrical and thermal conductivity may be enhanced by the application of a functional coating. Gold may be used for special pcb connector applications, whereas passivated zinc cobalt is more common for electrical connectors. A variety of laminates and resist coatings also provide dielectric properties.
Optical / Cosmetic
Specific material finishes can be requested for cosmetic purposes. Underlying surface roughness also has a marked effect on the appearance.
Post Manufacturing Assembly
A variety of assembly techniques are employed including forming, micro welding and adhesives/bonding to meet customer needs.