Frequently Asked Questions

What is needed in order to provide a quote for your services?

 A picture of your application is worth a million words, but if there is no physical sample available we would need dimensions, list of keep out areas, material choice, market segment (aerospace, military, industrial, medical), if the application is controlled if it is already specified, environment and or end use of product. 

How long does it take to turn around an order?

Our standard lead time ranges from 3-8 days although we have expedited option available to ensure we meet our customers needs.

What type of volumes does ECT expect?

We have no expectations. We work with many start up on projects that typically consist of one card or on the other hand, we have multi-tier automotive customer that require 2000-4000 cards per day and everything in between. We remain flexible to meet your needs. 

Do you assist with design, or do you need an official drawing to engage?

We prefer to be brought into the design as early as possible. There are many things we can highlight along the way to ensure your design in manufacturable when it comes to coating or potting. Throughout the process we can highlight the pros and cons associated with all coating and keep out decisions. 

What is your capacity?

Each of our manufacturing facilities having 14,000 sqft of production space dedicated to coating and potting lines. ECT is one of the largest suppliers within its space. We have built in triple shift flexibility to ensure we can support our customer needs with a rapid response. 

Do you help customers vertically integrate their coating in house?

Yes, our goal is to support your business in the desired direction you choose. ECTs business model allows our customers work with us, developing the design for their material, dispense, and curing equipment. We will demonstrate your manufacturing line in house prior to procuring any equipment. ECT will then take on the accountability of installing, commissioning, and supporting your line.

Do you carry inventory of various products?

We carry an abundance of stock items in which most, if not all, can be found in our “go to” product materials section of the website. Additionally, ECT has developed long term relationships with many suppliers, enabling us to fast track non-stock items that typically carry longer lead times. 

Are you ISO9001, ITAR, controlled goods certified?

Yes, our facilities meet a variety of certifications.

What type of coating is the right choice for my application?

The correct coating varies from application to application. We've compiled a set of bulletins listing all chemistries and understanding which is the best for each kind of application. Additionally, we encourage you to reach out to our highly trained application engineers to support for an initial consultation. 

Do you offer on site training to maximize efficiencies with PVA coating/dispensing systems?

ECT has worked with PVA coating and dispense systems for over 20 years which has given us the ability to maximize machine capabilities while  maintaining the highest quality and drastically reducing cycle times. Our knowledge of these systems gives us the ability to optimize both on site at our facility or on site at our customers facility. 

What is Parylene?

Parylene is an ultra-thin conformal coating applied in a chemical vapor deposition (CVD). This coating is classified as XY. 

Is the parylene coating reworkable/repairable?

Yes, the PCB coated with parylene can be reworked. Options for rework: mechanical (micro-blaster or dry ice), heat (localized heat), chemical (organic solvent). Repairing the coating can be achieved with UR or AR/UR coatings. 

Does parylene coating add weight to my PCB?

This coating is ultra-lightweight with minimal added weight to the PCB surfaces. 

Is parylene coating optically clear?

Yes, parylene C and N ultra-thin coatings are colorless and transparent.

Is parylene a rigid or flexible coating?

Parylene C elongation is 200%, and parylene N elongation is 40%.

Is parylene a hydrophobic coating?

Yes, parylene coating has hydrophobic properties repelling water and moisture. 

Are parylene coatings cryogenic resistant?

Yes, this ultra-thin coating is cryogenic resistant to -200°C

Is parylene biocompatible?

Yes, parylene N and parylene C met the requirements of USP Plastic Class VI. Testing completed by Advanced Coating.

Does parylene bond to all surfaces on the PCB?

Yes, the parylene (CVD) process will deposit the conformal coating on all surfaces of the PCB. 

Does your parylene C meet Mil-I-46058C/IPC-CC-830-C?

Yes, parylene C meets the requirements of Mil-I-46058C/IPC-CC-830-C. Testing completed by Advanced Coating.

What are the advantages/disadvantages?

Advantages of Parylene:Disadvantages of Parylene:

UNIFORMITY - Complete, uniform coverage on all surfaces.

ULTRA-THIN - Ultra-thin coating between 0.25 to 0.75 microns.

CONSISTENT THICKNESS - Consistency of coating thickness across the entire board.

EXCELLENT PROTECTION - Complete protection from moisture, fumes, gases, salt water, corrosion, fungus, and other environmental conditions.

CLEAR APPEARANCE  - Parylene C and N are clear in appearance and ideal for optical applications.

NO CAPILLARY FLOW - No capillary flow under components on the circuit board.

LIGHTWEIGHT - On 1” x 1” x 0.00125 mils FR4 board with no components, parylene added 0.040 grams.

NO STRESS ON COMPONENTS -  Deposition is completed at room temperature preventing stress on PCB components.

LONG PROCESS TIME - Limited throughput due to batch process cycle time.

ADHESION - Adhesion promoter required to achieve parylene bond to the PCB.

COST - Higher process and material costs than other conformal coatings.  

DIFFICULT TO REWORK - Very challenging to rework localized and complete PCB. 

PREP TIME - Labor intensive cleaning and masking process.

FAILURES - Failures can occur from parylene lifting at the de-masking site, cracking, no transparency, or voids anywhere on the coating.

NOBLE METALS - Poor adhesion to noble metals – gold, silver, and stainless steel.

What are the phases of the parylene process?

1 – Sublimination - The dimer granular is vaporized into a gas.

2 - Pyrolysis - The dimer gas is heated to a high temperature to produce a monomer gas that splits the dimer molecules.

3 - Deposition - The monomer gas is transferred to the coating vessel to deposit onto the PCB as an ultra-thin coating at room temperature.

4 - Chiller & Vacuum - The chiller captures the excess parylene at the end of the cycle. The vacuum pulls all the air and gasses from the chamber, facilitating the parylene deposition.

Does parylene conformal coating add weight to my PCB?

Parylene is an ultra-thin conformal coating that adds minimal weight to the PCB. The weight of the parylene layer over a 1” x 1” x .00125 mils on an FR4 board with no components is. 040 grams. 

Does parylene coating evenly coat complex and intricate surfaces on my PCB?

Yes, parylene is a uniform coating over complex and intricate surfaces, controlled during the deposition phase. 

What is the thickness of your parylene coating?

The parylene coating thickness can range from .1 to 50 microns (.001 – 2 mils). Typically, most customers require mil-spec standard thicknesses, which are repeatable and achievable batch after batch with our equipment. 

How is the thickness of the parylene coating controlled?

The thickness of the parylene coating is impacted by the dimer mass, deposition rate, temperature, and other factors, such as the topography of the PCB. 

What masking techniques will be used?

The complexity of the PCB topography determines masking techniques. Masking options are liquid maskants such as UV-curable maskants, latex maskant, polyester or Kapton tape, caps, and boots (standardized or 3D printed). 

Why is an adhesion promoter used before the parylene coating deposition process?

Pre-treatment with silane stimulates parylene adhesion to promote a molecular bond from the substrate to the applied parylene coating. 

Is a cleaning process necessary before the parylene process?

Yes, all PCBs are cleaned before applying the adhesion promoter and the parylene process to ensure the adhesion of the parylene coating. 

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