22 March 2023
Within LACROIX’s Electronics Activity, our Design for Test experts ensure that the defined test strategy is perfectly controlled in order to meet the expected quality objectives while also optimizing the costs incurred. Vincent Airiau, the test engineering corporate manager, explains how to define the most cost-effective and relevant test strategy by integrating this expertise from the design stage.
Did you know that 95% of LACROIX’s customers have chosen to define their test strategy prior to the industrialization of their product? By benefiting from Design for Test (DfT) support, the objective is to achieve the best balance between the targeted quality level and the financial investment that these test operations can represent.
Furthermore, by developing a test strategy very early on, it is possible to anticipate process constraints to a greater degree. The design of a product can be redefined in order to better adapt it to the testing equipment, which ultimately improves the quality of all industrialization phases at the best cost.
The results obtained as a result of a DfT approach often have repercussions for the design of the product, whether this is in relation to the topology of the printed circuit board (PCB) or the electrical diagram, for example. Before defining the best test protocol to establish, our DfT offering includes proposals to improve the design of the board in order to offer the best possible test coverage.”
Experts recommend integrating Design for Test from the start of the project in order to anticipate the constraints of certain test processes. Taking this aspect into consideration in advance offers several advantages. Firstly, it limits the additional costs associated with the possible reworking of the initial designs and also avoids tests that are more expensive or less efficient.
During the manufacture of home & building products, a DfT study made it possible to rethink the testing strategy. By adding a structural test earlier in the manufacturing process, functional tests were optimized by increasing the test coverage to reach a defined quality rate of 20 ppm (parts per million). Without this optimization, producing the planned quantity would have required twice the number of pieces of test equipment.
Design for Test support generally leads to the delivery of several potential test scenarios, designed by qualified experts within LACROIX. The design of the product is then sometimes subject to modification proposals, which may be more or less significant depending on the maturity of the project.
For example, some electronic components may be preferred over others in order to allow for the automation of a test that, without this adjustment, would have to be performed manually. The goal is always to improve the performance of the tests or to reduce their costs with an equal level of coverage by optimizing, for example, the number or nature of the test operations.
A DfT service includes an analysis of all the failure risks that are to be covered, whether they are generated during the manufacturing process or linked to the specifications of the electronic components. We always adapt to our customers’ constraints so that we can deliver a test strategy that is in line with our customers’ priorities.”
LACROIX relies on its mastery of the latest technological innovations to implement ultra-efficient test strategies. To increase the depth and speed of execution of testability analyses, DfT experts use the services of TESTWAY software. This improves product test coverage by immediately identifying corrections and improvements to the design of the printed circuit board (PCB) or other manufacturing characteristics.
The Design for Test offering adapts to the needs and maturity of each project. It may be partially involved, for example, only on certain aspects of the product (PCB, design or other). This choice will depend on the maturity of the product and the state of progress of its design, reviewing its design in a more fundamental, or less fundamental, manner.
The quality of the DfT analyses delivered by LACROIX results in extremely detailed reports on the testing strategy that is to be carried out.
In reality, each project requires a different approach. All our customers’ constraints and objectives are integrated upstream of our support in DfT. Depending on the constraints and on certain parameters that need to be controlled, we design tailor-made test strategies to meet our customers’ quality objectives, while also optimizing costs for them.”
The test strategies allow product quality to be optimized at the best cost. With a relevant, efficient DfT strategy, developed alongside experts, the investment in tests is perfectly balanced and controlled in relation to the expected quality.
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