Electronics & Automation 2013

Electronics & Automation in Utrecht – best show since long

Last week from the 28th till the 30th of May, the BENELUX electronics industry came together in Utrecht for the biannual event EA-beurs. With 4.356 visitors over 3 days, the exhibition counted 500 visitors more than the last edition in 2011. We registered 810 visitors on our booth which kept us very busy. Every m² of exhibition space was fully occupied in de Jaarbeurs Utrecht, offering visitors a nice buzz of activity.

Engineersonline did a daily review of the exhibition. All reviews (in Dutch) can be found here:

Day 1 : Beurs direct vol op stoom

Day 2 : Negen gigawatt… of een banaan

Day 3 : Het wordt eentonig : Cup opnieuw naar Eurocircuits

Our customers could register for a free ticket for the exhibition through our website and via links sent in pre exhibition mails. 331 people effectively did so. Over the 3 days 201 visitors entered the exhibition with their pre registered Eurocircuits ticket. This number proved to be undefeated by other exhibitors and thus for the fourth edition in a row, the marketing cup went to Eurocircuits. Thanks to all these customers that contributed to this success.

The weekend before the exhibition we have launched our new website. The major point of improvement was the introduction of PCB Configurator. It is the new step in the Eurocircuits goes visual strategy, after the release of PCB Visualizer and PCB Checker.

PCB Configurator enables the manipulation of the order details to bring them in accordance with the data content before the order is launched. That way we avoid unnecessary misunderstandings and miscommunications.

PCB Configurator contains also a very strong engine for technical validations of all available Eurocircuits services. It forms the basis of our new calculation program. In there you will find our complete overview of technical capabilities at your finger tips with prices just a few clicks away. More info in our BLOG: PCB Calculator now integrated with PCB Visualizer and more detailed info will follow later.

Rethinking our website made us redefine our services. Today we have 4 PCB services based on their base material.

Existing users can see quickly what has changed and all users can find a complete user guide here.

This also affected our technical classification which leads to the publication of new design guide lines and new EAGLE dru files. Both can be downloaded from our website.

New generation eC-reflow-mate. Just one month befor the exhibition we released our new version of the eC-reflow-mate. This made it one of the hot topics on our booth. More details on what our new generation eC-reflow-mate has to offer can be found in the BLOG we wrote about it.

Eurocircuits produced and sponsored all PCBs for the exhibition gadget project “Helios”.Almost 2.000 visitors could assemble the Arduino based “Helios” by visiting 6 predefined booths. Page Electronics, a Eurocircuits customer, pre assembled a part of the boards. The remaining quantity was live assembled on the “live line” in Utrecht. Visitors could see the board emerge from the assembly line and get informed about every production step in the line.

Eurocircuits also participated in two seminars bringing two presentations: “traceability” and “good PCB data”. Both presentations were given in Dutch. You can find their brief content as well as the full presentation below:

Uw PCB data: klaar voor de printplaatproductie?
Dirk Stans, Eurocircuits

De data die de ontwerper aflevert aan de PCB fabrikant is verre van klaar voor de productie. Elke PCB fabrikant moet er nog een heleboel checks op uitvoeren en aanpassingen aan doen om de data bruikbaar te maken voor productie en er zo de noodzakelijke machineaansturingen uit te genereren.
Wat zijn de meest voor de hand liggende basisregels om goede PCB layout data te genereren? Wat zijn de meest voorkomende fouten? Welke tools heeft Eurocircuits ontwikkeld om deze fouten snel te vinden en aan te passen? Een overzicht aan de hand van een praktijkvoorbeeld.

Bekijk de presentatie hier

Traceability in een printproductiebedrijf: van basismateriaal tot afgewerkte PCB
Dirk Stans, Eurocircuits

Eurocircuits past de traceability filosofie al vele jaren toe in zijn producties. De initiële motivatie hiervoor was om zelf zicht te krijgen op de eigen productieprocessen. Maar in combinatie met de gestroomlijnde online administratie van Eurocircuits, biedt traceability een tweede peiler aan: transparantie van de productieprocessen naar de klant toe. Hierdoor kan de Eurocircuits klant specifieke informatie over zijn product ontvangen. Deze informatie komt rechtstreeks en automatisch uit het traceability systeem. De presentatie gaat verder in op de ervaringen met traceability en wat het oplevert voor de producent en de klant.

Bekijk de presentatie hier

On the exhibition floor we were captured by the press for an interview. Watch it here!

Last but not least, the exhibition was not only a success but it was also a lot of fun being in the midst of our home market between many friends and colleagues and being visited by so many new and existing customers. Our cooperation with neighbour “tbp” contributed again to the positive atmosphere on our linked booths and extended onto the exhibition floor. “tbp” organized the bar, we brought the Belgian beer. We only took back empty barrels and cases.

Some impressions

This BLOG is a follow up on our previous BLOG on E&A.

Eurocircuits on Electronics & Automation 2013

E&A exhibition – Jaarbeurs Utrecht – 28-30 may 2013 – booth 8E042

Also in 2013 you will find Eurocircuits at the E&A exhibition. Many visitors have already registered for a free entry ticket and for the gadget “Helios”. The last 3 editions of the show (2007-2009-2011), Eurocircuits customers visited the show and our booth in great numbers. Thanks to them we were successful in the marketing cup.

For this edition we are again counting on your support. Register now for a free entry ticket and do not forget to opt in for the gadget as quantities are limited. All customers that visit our booth with their Eurocircuits entry ticket may expect a nice give away.

Eurocircuits presents:
“Eurocircuits goes Visual” extended. After PCB Visualizer and PCB Checker we are now proud to present PCB Configurator. PCB Configurator is currently running in beta test phase. During E&A we will be able to demonstrate all of its powerful features. More info coming soon …

Eurocircuits participates:

  • show gadget “Helios” – we make and sponsor all the bare boards
  • traceability seminar – we explain how and why we apply full traceability at Eurocircuits
  • design for excellence seminar – we elaborate on the influence of the design on the PCB quality

And last but not least there is of course the “live line”, the many pavilions (PLOT, DEVclub, …) and double the number of Belgian exhibitors against 2011. More later …

As a good tradition of the last years we continue our cooperation with tbp electronics: tbp takes care of their nice café booth and we make sure they serve various lovely Belgian beers. We hope that with our booths side by side we will again form the centre of the atmosphere during this years edition of E&A.

Don”t forget to register for a free ticket. See you at E&A.

Prototype soldering with the eC-reflow equipment- Workshop in Augsburg

Perfect prototype soldering with the eC-reflow equipment – a lively Eurocircuits workshop in Augsburg.

On 28 – 29 November 2012 Eurocircuits GmbH ran two one-day workshops in Augsburg, Germany. The topic was SMD assembly. A total of 36 people attended.

Our hosts were Claudia and Benedikt Sauter, the owners of embedded projects GmbH, a young company distributing third-party products from Atmel Arduino and Olimex as well as developing their own embedded measurement and control solutions. Their flagship product is the Gnublin Linux family of boards (http://www.gnublin.org/designer). These allow engineers to develop their own embedded solutions.

Benedikt Sauer started the proceedings each day with a presentation of his company and its products.

Uwe Doerr then gave a short introduction to Eurocircuits GmbH, followed by an overview of the theoretical part of the workshop. He followed this with a presentation of the features and operating principles of Eurocircuits’ reflow soldering equipment, the eC-stencil-mate solder paste printer and the eC-reflow-mate reflow oven.


Ben Verwaest, SMT specialist from Arcoss, Belgium, and Eurocircuits’ soldering technology partner, then explained the different processes and materials used for assembling PCB using surface-mount technology.

This completed the theoretical presentations and we moved onto the practical part of the day. The first step was to print solder paste onto demo PCBs using the eC-stencil-mate printer. Each step was explained in detail to show the participants how to achieve professional quality results.

Next the components were placed and the boards reflow soldered in the eC-reflow-mate. A big screen was on hand so that the audience could see what Ben and Uwe were describing as they explained the critical features of each stage of the soldering process.

Ben then moved on to demonstrate tricks and tips for hand soldering. The participants had been encouraged to bring their own problems and queries for this part of the day, so that they could work with Ben to find solutions..

Finally he showed how to solder a BGA. This was a live demonstration using a special BGA soldering station. Ben explained in detail the difficulties of soldering BGAs and what procedures to adopt how to overcome them.

Throughout the participants showed great interest in the topics presented. Their questions made each workshop a lively and successful event. Even between presentations, Benedikt, Uwe and Ben were kept busy answering yet more questions..

Eurocircuits-CadSoft EAGLE workshop for electronics engineering apprentices

Eurocircuits and CadSoft run their first EAGLE workshop for electronics engineering apprentices.

On 29 – 30 January 2013 Eurocircuits and CadSoft organised a joint workshop on PCB design for engineering apprentices at SMA Solar Technology AG in Kassel, Germany.

SMA Solar Technology leads the market in Germany for solar power installations. After surveying the market, they decided that all their electronics engineering apprentices should be trained on the EAGLE PCB Layout package.

Uwe Doerr from Eurocircuits started the January workshop with an illustrated presentation to the whole group of first and second year apprentices. The presentation showed how we make 4-layer multilayers at our factories in Eger, Hungary, and Baesweller, Germany. To make it even clearer and easier to understand, Uwe had brought along sample panels taken from the various production stages.


Richard Hammerl from CadSoft was in action on both days. On day 1 he gave basic instruction to a group of first year apprentices who had only limited experience of the layout program. This part of the course provided basic information to help them get started with schematic capture and PCB layout. On the second day, Richard provided more in-depth instruction to 17 second year apprentices.

All in all, more than 30 young engineers joined in the sessions. Their keen interest, individual feedback from their practical sessions, and a host of questions on a wide range of topics ensured that the two days were both educational and highly entertaining. Everyone, including Helmut Fligge, Team Leader for Technical Training, agreed that the two days were a great success, and should if possible be repeated in future.

 

EAGLE workshop

On 10 December 2012 we joined with CadSoft to run our first workshop on their highly successful EAGLE PCB layout package. The meeting was hosted in Augsburg by our old friends and customers embedded projects GmbH. Despite the sudden onset of winter 14 participants braved the snow and ice to attend.

Benedikt Sauter, Managing Director of embedded projects GmbH, opened the seminar with a presentation of his company. Then Uwe Doerr, Project Manager at Eurocircuits GmbH, introduced Eurocircuits. He highlighted our plans to provide a support infrastructure for designers to help them bring their projects to completion on time and on budget. For PCB designers these added-value services include special links with EAGLE CAD: free upload of EAGLE DRU files, sale of EAGLE licences, and direct links between the EAGLE V6 user interface and Eurocircuits’ Price calculator menu.


Richard Hammerl then took over. He has worked for CadSoft GmbH for more than 18 years and is known to many designers across Europe as the lynch-pin of the EAGLE support services. He started with a presentation on CadSoft from its foundation in the late 80s to the present day. He moved on to explain the principal new features in EAGLE V. 6 xx compared to V.5. This was followed by a lively question and answer session which allowed the participants to put forward their wish-list for new features and to raise a broad range of technical issues. In reply, Richard explained the basics of the software and clarified many issues including component libraries, multilayer layouts and schematics.

After a light lunch kindly provided by our hosts, embedded projects, Uwe Doerr presented Eurocircuits’ new PCB Visualizer and PCB Checker. Using examples of actual PCB designs he explained the benefits of online visualisation and the direct comparison of the analysed data with the customer’s order and the specifications of the chosen Eurocircuits’ service. He went on to show how PCB Checker displays the DRC results directly on the layout. The designer can locate any errors immediately. He can save time in two areas: design review is faster, and by uploading clean data he can eliminate potential production delays.

Finally Uwe gave an illustrated presentation on the manufacture of a 4-layer multilayer in our factories in Eger and Baesweiler.

It was a long day but we covered the whole progress of a design from layout, through ordering and online data checking, and finally to manufacture.

Eurocircuits would like to thank everyone involved. The hospitality of embedded projects GmbH and the support of CadSoft GmbH gave all participants an informative and exciting day.

Open house in our production facility in Eger, Hungary

At the end of November our factory in Eger, Hungary organized an ’Open house’ for our Hungarian customers.

About 50 visitors were welcomed by Gabor Wachter, the managing director of Eurocircuits Kft. starting the day with a warm welcome and the details of the program.

Jozsef Lengyel, our technology manager gave a detailed presentation on how pcb”s are manufactured in Eger.

After that Jozsef Bahul explained how our design guidelines can help electronic engineers to optimise their layouts for easier production and higher reliability.


We took this occasion to present PCB Visualizer and PCB Checker for the first time in Hungary.

After two hours of presentations we guided our guests through a factory tour, where they could continuously fire their questions at our technology experts. Next to the pcb production process, also the stencil cutting was shown and explained.

Our customers showed a good interest also in the eC-prototype equipment during the live demo.

More questions came after the tour, during the coffee and sandwich break. Judging by the reactions, our visitors found it an interesting day.

A stressful day for our Hungarian team, time for a group picture.

PCB Checker shown at Electronica November 13 till 16

PCB Checker – the next level of PCB designer support.

At Electronica 2012 Eurocircuits launch PCB Checker, the latest update to their highly praised PCB Visualizer PCB data verification software tool.PCB Checker takes PCB Visualizer’s pre-order design rule check (DRC) to the next level. It provides a graphic display of the DRC results directly on your PCB layout.

Using PCB Checker’s clear menus and displays you can immediately filter the errors and view each type, stepping through from worst first. Correct your design data to enhance the manufacturability of your PCBs and to make sure that they fit into our lowest cost pooling service. You save time, you save money, and you save a frustrating search.

PCB Checker and PCB Visualizer allow you to check your designs prior to placing your order, using automated tools otherwise only available in professional front-end engineering software. You can place your pre-checked order confident that the data-set is complete and correct to the order and that your design data matches the most cost-effective of our pooling services. – Read more on the Eurocircuits blog 

Eurocircuits at Electronica 2012 – 13-16 November Hall A5-booth 314

PCB CheckerPCB Checker shows design rule check results directly on your PCB before you order.

At Electronica 2012 Eurocircuits launch PCB Checker, the latest update to their highly praised PCB Visualizer PCB data verification software tool.

Watch the Evertiq interview on electronica with our managing director Dirk Stans

PCB Checker – the next level of PCB designer support.

PCB Checker takes PCB Visualizer’s pre-order design rule check (DRC) to the next level. It provides a graphic display of the DRC results directly on your PCB layout.

Using PCB Checker’s clear menus and displays you can immediately filter the errors and view each type, stepping through from worst first. Correct your design data to enhance the manufacturability of your PCBs and to make sure that they fit into our lowest cost pooling service. You save time, you save money, and you save a frustrating search.

PCB Checker and PCB Visualizer allow you to check your designs prior to placing your order, using automated tools otherwise only available in professional front-end engineering software. You can place your pre-checked order confident that the data-set is complete and correct to the order and that your design data matches the most cost-effective of our pooling services.

Production data.

As soon as our engineers have completed the tool data preparation (see front-end-data-preparation) they now put the finished data back into PCB Visualizer. You can see every detail of the production data as it will be used to make your PCB. If our engineers have found any issues you can see exactly what they have queried, ensuring clear and effective communication.

Try PCB Visualizer and PCB Checker here.

Eurocircuits presenteert “PCB Visualizer” als Noviteit op HET Instrument 2012

U kan nog tot donderdagmiddag, 30-08-2012, voor de PCB Visualizer van Eurocircuits stemmen!

Tijdens de week van 25-28 september is het weer zo ver en kan u ons vinden op HET Instrument 2012, in Amsterdam, Hal 1 stand B031.

Deze beurseditie hebben we besloten mee te dingen naar de nominatie: “Noviteit 2012 van de branche Industriële Electronica (IE)”. Hiervoor hebben we onze nieuwste ontwikkeling “PCB Visualizer” als noviteit ingediend.

Waarom geloven wij dat PCB Visualizer een noviteit is?
PCB Visualizer, analyseert uw PCB data en vergelijkt deze met uw order data en toont uw print online op het scherm. De analyse gebeurt met dezelfde technische software en regels die wij intern gebruiken om uw print productieklaar te maken. Zo geeft de analyse, ook al loopt deze volledig automatisch, een realistisch beeld van mogelijke onduidelijkheden met uw order. Bovendien, en dat is wellicht meteen ook de grootste troef, gebeurt dit alles nog voor u de bestelling doorstuurt. U kan dus zelf, op voorhand, mogelijke anomaliën voorkomen. Bovendien staat PCB Visualizer in uw Eurocircuits klantaccount 24/24 en 7/7 ter beschikking zodat hij voor u werkt wanneer u dat wil. PCB Visualizer is een Eurocircuits software onwikkeling die technische CAM software en onze e-business software met elkaar integreert. Wil u meer weten over PCB Visualizer, lees dan onze BLOG over PCB Visualizer of ga direct naar de stempagina op de site van Het Instrument. Daar vindt u eveneens meer info en kan u direct uw stem uitbrengen. Stemmen kan tot donderdagnamiddag. Wij rekenen op u!

Zie de Eurocircuits PCB Visualizer in actie

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Vergeet niet te registreren voor een gratis toegangsbewijs voor de beurs.

Dat kan u hier meteen doen. Op deze manier steunt u ons ook voor de ranking in de marketing cup! Dank bij voorbaat.

Gadget. Terwijl u registreert kan u zich eveneens aanmelden voor het Gadget 2012, de “compass clock“. De compass clock,is ontworpen door YMIF engineering en de printen komen van Eurocircuits. Zeker doen!

Meer over hoe te registreren en over het aanmelden voor het gadget, vindt u in onze BLOG over HET Instrument 2012.

Verder willen wij u nog attent maken op het beursseminarie: “Design Automation & Embedded Systems” dat plaats vindt vrijdagochtend 28 september, zaal G104. Eurocircuits zal er een presentatie geven over “Eurocircuits goes visual” waar PCB Visualizer een wezenlijk deel van uitmaakt.

Wij kijken er naar uit u in Amsterdam te ontmoeten en hopen dat u voor ons STEMT en via ons REGISTREERT.

Met vriendelijke groeten,

Eurocircuits NV

 

Eurocircuits – Webinar following the D&E event in Holland.

What do PCB fabricators do with your data before they make your PCBs?

This year”s D&E event in Holland was followed by a webinar. For Eurocircuits this was the first webinar in our history. It took place on 20 June launched from the premises of XWebinar in Holland.

We announced the webinar to our customer base with the working title, “Front-end data preparation“. This raised a lot interest among our customers and around 140 were online when we started at 11H00. An hour and 20 minutes later over 120 were still with us. We would like to thank all those who took part.

The content of our webinar, “What do PCB fabricators do with your data before they make your PCBs”, can now be found online as a white paper.

The white paper covers all aspects of the presentation we made during the webinar. It has the added advantage that it contains links to the in-depth information on the web site for all the technical issues discussed. This means that it reads more smoothly than the presentation itself. However, if you wish to review the recording, you can do so here…


Since it was our first webinar, we were glad to learn from the valuable feedback we received. Our conclusions so far:

  • The webinar communication technique certainly fits for us and is highly appreciated by our customers
  • We need to improve drastically on the tools used to run the webinar to deliver a better experience
  • We should in future reduce the number of topics so that we can cover them more in-depth
  • We should repeat the same webinar several times on different dates so more people can join
  • We need to think about offering these webinars in more languages
  • You like our investment in visualization techniques
  • There can never be enough technical information available on the website
  • You like the BLOG that we have started this year bringing as much of our knowledge to you as possible
  • We should tell you more often what we do and what technical information is available

As we covered too many topics, not so many focused technical questions came out of the chat we were running. The conclusion here also is that we should continue to publish in-depth technical articles on our web site.

We have learned that visualization and modern communication tools in all their aspects are the right way forward for us. We are planning to go further on that journey and to take you with us should you choose to come.

Any comment is welcome below or at euro@eurocircuits.com