Cleaning thin materials (<30µm)

Key base materials used in advanced electronics are laminates. They become thinner driven by market demands for smaller, lighter and more powerful products and present new, increasingly difficult challenges for particle removal.

Cleaning base materials thinner than 30µm

As key industries such as Electronics strive to make its products smaller whilst at the same time use less materials, the base materials used become ever thinner.

For example one of the key base materials used in the PCB industry are laminates. An emerging trend is the use of RCC (Resin Coated Copper). These materials are being increasingly used for smart phone circuit boards, and present challenges for particle removal.

These materials are thin, often less than 30µm and have high gloss surfaces making them challenging for traditional non contact cleaning equipment.

Contact cleaning is a tried and tested contamination removal technique used widely in the PCB  and SMT sectors. Contamination is removed when sheets of material pass through the contact cleaning machine, the elastomer cleaning rollers remove contamination.

Typically elastomer cleaning rollers are designed to have high ‘tack’, based on the assumption that high tack or ‘stickiness’ results in better cleaning. However, detailed research carried out at Teknek and Universities show that this assumption is flawed. Moreover, high static charges are created within most contact cleaning machines which makes wrapping even more likely.

Particle removal by elastomer rollers results from a number of forces which the roller exerts on contamination and customer material. As material gets thinner those forces result in the material wrapping around the cleaning roller and in doing so creating scrap.

Expertly Engineered Elastomers - Cleaning without Wrapping

By understanding the complex Science of Cleaning it becomes self evident that thin materials can be cleaned with high efficiency without wrapping.

This can be achieved by the careful formulation of the base polymer, the polymerisation process and the surface finish of the roller.

By using novel polymer formulations and rollers with customised surfaces, and low static cleaning rollers and adhesives, high performance cleaning with no wrapping is accomplished.

Cleaning Rollers Fifty V2
Cleaning Rollers Fifty V2