Best in Test Finalists 2011: ATE/production test

- December 22, 2010

TMW Best in Test Awards 2011


(The voting for the 2011 Best in Test awards has concluded.)


APx515 Production Test Audio Analyzer
Audio Precision

Audio Precision  APX515

The APx515 is a high-performance audio analyzer optimized for production test. APx515 has a typical THD+N of -106 dB, a 1-million-point FFT with 24-bit resolution, and 192 k digital I/O. The company says the APx515 is a significant product because it delivers the performance and reliability of Audio Precision at a production-level price.

The APx audio analyzer returns an impressive 21 audio measurements in as fast as 1.2 s. It is also easy to use, with one-click measurements, custom reporting, and sophisticated automation that does not require programming. A full API and LabView driver are also provided.

Audio Precision says that with the speed and ease-of-use of the APx515, test will never be a bottleneck, and production-line managers can achieve reliable, consistent results compared to the low-cost alternatives like a distortion analyzer. For companies outsourcing their production, requiring APx515 on the production line will give them tighter control over production, ensuring manufacturers are meeting their contractual requirements.

Di-050-22 Digital Test Instrument

 Teradyne Di-050-22
The Di-050-22 Digital Test Instrument is for customers facing the challenges of complex board and box-level test for the defense and aerospace industries. The Di-050-22 features high-performance digital-test capability with key benefits in the areas of compatibility, flexibility, performance, and ease-of-use for older and current designs.

Compatibility with legacy equipment allows the Di-050-22 to preserve the enormous investment in existing test programs. Flexibility enables testing of multiple asynchronous ports in new designs and real-time box-level test. High-performance nanosecond timing and custom pin electronics allow a single instrument to support both new LVDS designs and older TTL products. Per-pin programmability and visual development tools provide ease-of-use by replacing central resources and low-level textual programming. Teradyne claims that this combination of benefits delivers the lowest cost of ownership, the highest performance, and the best future-ready test capabilities in the industry.

FLS980Dxi Flying Scorpion Probe System

 Acculogic FLS980
FLS980Dxi is a double-sided, multiprobe flying-probe system with 3-D probing, analog, digital, and boundary-scan test capability on all probes (top and bottom side). To meet the test challenges created by shrinking component sizes and denser packaging technologies, the FLS980Dxi uses highly repeatable closed-loop linear motor drives and joystick-like variable angle (0° to 6°) probe modules to maximize physical access and guarantee repeatable probing of fine-pitch devices and small components such as 0201 and 01005s. With the FLS980Dxi, you can test boards whose layout, size, and technology defy testing on traditional in-circuit and other moving probe testers.

Using the PinScan vectorless test suite, the FLS980 detects open-pin and orientation faults on digital devices, polarized caps, and connectors. Boundary scan also is integral to the FLS980; digital test patterns are delivered to the unit under test through flying probes. FLS980Dxi goes beyond interconnect testing by providing full digital test capability; device programming, and mixed-signal testing using the company's ScanProbe technology.

Neptune 2 Automated Drive-Test System

Teradyne Neptune 2
Neptune-2 is an automated test system specifically designed for high-volume production test of 2.5-in. hard-disk drives and emerging solid-state drives. With its modular design and thermal architecture, Neptune-2 allows drive manufacturers facing rapidly increasing production volume and area density to ramp production quickly and efficiently. Teradyne says that compared to traditional test systems, the Neptune-2 architecture provides three times the throughput per square foot of factory floor space while performing parametric, manufacturing, and burn-in tests.

The system uses conductive heating to provide thermal cycling of the drive using 35% less power than other testing approaches. Conductive heating provides direct thermal coupling to the drive under test, which improves accuracy, efficiency, and performance. Modular isolation packs minimize the transfer of transient shock and vibration by separating the drive under test from the system frame and automation. Teradyne says that these innovations save drive manufacturers millions of dollars in operating costs, reduce overall test times, and improve first pass yields.

SigmaSure Software
Camstar Systems

Camstar SigmaSure
Camstar SigmaSure enables users to easily collaborate with their global manufacturing sites, component suppliers, and contract manufacturers to ensure that products meet specifications. For the brand owner, it helps prevent inadequate test procedures, low yields, and excess rework. SigmaSure helps users effectively monitor the quality of products across the value-chain: from suppliers to manufacturing, from finished goods to end users, from design to customer service.

SigmaSure is delivered as Software as a Service (SaaS), requiring no hardware or software installation. Camstar says the software can be up and running with suppliers, contract manufacturers, or return centers in four to six weeks.

SigmaSure on-demand supply chain quality includes: dashboards and alerts; definition of mission-critical components and parametric limits; acquisition and analysis of test data, acquisition and analysis of repair and rework data, analysis of customer return and warranty data, product genealogy across the supply chain, advanced analysis and SQC, and certificates of compliance and analysis.

WriteNow! Multiple In-System Programmer

Algocraft WriteNow
Algocraft's WriteNow! Multiple In-System Programmer provides customers with a powerful way to perform in-system programming of devices such as microcontrollers and memories directly on the production line. WriteNow! programmers are universal ISP tools that can program up to eight devices simultaneously, at the maximum theoretical speed for any given device, and are especially designed for the production environment.

The compact size and versatile interfaces of WriteNow! programmers allow them to be conveniently and easily integrated into automatic test equipment and programming and testing fixtures. The data-encryption feature allows manufacturers to securely synchronize local data with distant production facilities. Algocraft says that other features, such as a programmable power supply output, USB and LAN interfacing, and I/O barrier on ISP lines, make the WriteNow! programmers a powerful and cost-effective solution for every in-system programming need.