Boston Semi Equipment (BSE) is a worldwide test automation products and services company. And when they had a plan to revolutionize their industry, they turned to PI to help make their vision a reality.
The BSE Panacea is the first pick-and-place test handler to run without using a traditional device kit to process packages through the handler. A network of cameras provides inputs to establish the positions of all mechanisms and devices within the system. The revolutionary design uses vision to precisely place up to 32 devices into contactors. High-resolution, high-speed cameras and sophisticated software algorithms eliminate the use of device kits. This simplifies system mechanics, reduces maintenance and raises first-pass yield.
PI was tasked with developing the overall industrial design and usability of BSE’s Panacea test handler. This platform represents a first entry into a new market segment for BSE featuring industry-leading technology. So Panacea’s aesthetics had to communicate high-performance and a unique, modern approach while de-emphasizing the system’s visual size.
Large instruments present a unique set of challenges, and this program was no exception. When in use on a production floor, operators require 360° access around the device. So visibility and physical access into the system critical for regular service and maintenance. And the primary user interaction space, where operators load and remove trays and set system controls, needed to be carefully considered and optimized for a wide range of potential users.
Through an initial human factors evaluation, PI’s team revealed an unforeseen usability access issue that required a shift in the system architecture. By addressing this issue early in the process, PI enabled the company to save significant development time and dollars while delivering a superior experience for the user.
The BSE Panacea test handler’s innovative design keeps the device in production for more hours than conventional pick-and-place systems, increasing overall test cell output and lowering the cost of test.