Conformal coating is a protective thin polymeric film. It is often used to protect the components of a printed circuit board. When applied the film conforms to the contours of the different parts on the circuit, hence the name conformal coating.
Conformal coating in Hong Kong
In modern day Hong Kong electronics are part of everyday life. A circuit board is expected to perform in humid weather, hot temperatures or dry air conditioned spaces, so they are exposed to many different conditions every day. Conformal coatings are designed to protect circuit boards so they can cope in extreme conditions. The coating prevents the electronic components from corroding and short circuiting.
Humid weather in Hong Kong is one of the number one risk for damaging circuit boards. The circuits can become weakly conductive and sudden changes in performance can occur at high humidity. Luckily conformal coating prevents this from happening!
Florescent and multi applicable
The coating can be applied by brushing or spraying the circuit board. Other methods are dipping or robotic application of specific parts. Fun Fact: nearly all conformal coatings are fluorescent so it is easy to inspect the coverage with a Ultraviolet lamp. The coverage has to meet certain standards. The latest developments include automated optical inspection which are camera and scanner based.
Advantages of conformal coating
- Easy to apply
- Easy to inspect (due to fluorescence)
- Simple drying process
- Highly protective against humid weather conditions, salt and corrosion
- Abrasion resistant
- Easy to automate
LED conformal coatings (and displays)
Due to the latest legislation and energy saving attempts in Hong Kong more and more incandescent bulbs are replaced with LED’s (Light Emitting Diodes). The use of the correct conformal coating on the drive circuitry and LED lead-frames can mitigate against the corrosive effects of the operating environment. The coating forms an effective barrier to extraneous contaminants, Preserving the circuit’s integrity, as well as mitigating against the potential effects of tin whiskers.