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Thermal & Vibration Reliability for Advanced Rugged Electronics

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Course Outline:

    Technical Training Short On Site Course Quote

    Overview for management and participants

  • Quick evaluation of attendee prior knowledge
  • Circuit board layout for maximizing thermal paths and removing excess heat
  • Air cooling vs conduction cooling of electronics
  • How variations and combinations (including liquid cooling) help
  • Final system design, heat sinking and heat management
  • Processor, connector and mounting concerns
    Typical analyses needed for high reliability electronics
  • Vibration, thermal, shock, fatigue; interrelations
  • Test interactions and known issues; why perform analyses?
  • Testing needed to validate the vibration, thermal, shock, fatigue analyses
  • Why we must validate; how often?
  • Best practices and problem areas; why validate?
  • Six sigma, DOE, Pareto charts relative to data interpretation
    Lab visit - thermal chambers / thermal shock / vibration
  • Evaluate chambers; some make testing extremely difficult
  • Test set-up, good mounting for circuit boards
  • Use of daisy chains and dog-bone pads for test boards
  • Extra personnel vs. extra equipment
  • Record what during tests?
  • Calibration and certifications
  • Tin/lead solders, all tin solders, the best joint/spacing for components
  • What are tin whiskers? Effect on reliability. Relief. Avoidance.
  • Alternatives: silver solders, etc. Advantages and disadvantages
    Electronics packaging
  • Vibration resonance of card structures
  • Thermal heatsinking of modules and heat sink designs
  • Grounding of electronics modules; how to RF block your module
    Solder fatigue
  • What SMT packages hare fewer problems?
  • Life predictions: circuit boards, component materials, etc.
    International Trade and Arms Regulation (ITAR)
  • Definition, understanding; enforcement
  • Effect on communications
    Government contracting can make Parts, Materials & Processes a nightmare
  • "Scope creep" and how it affects testing
  • Inspection won't find all the problems what testing is really needed
Course summary; optional final examination; award of certificates


Tina Barcley has worked in Electronic Packaging, Testing, and Analysis for Aerospace companies (ITT, TRW, Perkin Elmer, Goodrich and Aerojet), NASA (Marshall Space Flight Center), Automotive (both Ford and Chrysler), Military Black Boxes (Singer Librascope, Army, Navy and Air Force modules) as well as high end commercial and testing components (Spectracom, MKS, Kodak, etc.). She has run and created testing labs, procedures, designs, fixes for designs - developing 21 US Patents all in Electronics Packaging, Materials, and Thermal. She is a frequent speaker at industry-specific conferences like IMAPS (International Microelectronics and Packaging Society) and ASE (Automotive Society of Engineers) and is on the IPC (IPC - Association Connecting Electronics Industries) Specification Review Panel.

She has extensive experience with Military and Aerospace Electronics and Optical Systems as well as satellites from smaller communication units to large optical benches. Additionally, she has R&D through production experience with automotive under-hood Engine and Transmission controllers. Her experience has included all levels of parts reliability for systems ranging from 6-month to 10-year reliabilities.

Tina has expertise in:

  • Solidworks CAD and Solidworks Simulation (includes structural and thermal analysis)
  • Development of Board Design Specifications
  • Prototype development to production
  • Solder Fatigue Analysis Englemaier and Low-Cycle Thermal Fatigue
  • Reliability Analysis, Parts and Materials Issues
  • Packaging Design including Interfaces and Circuit Boards
  • Harsh Environment Testing including accelerated life, thermal, vibration, thermal shock, mechanical shock, etc.


  • IMAPS New England 40th Sumposium and Expo May 7, 2013. Presentation and Paper, "Design and Design for Manufacture Improvement using CAD & Simulation."
  • IMAPS Automotive Conference May 22-24, 2012. Presentation and Paper, "Reliability Concerns - Pitfalls and Issues."
  • IMAPS New England 39th Symposium and Expo May 8, 2012. Presentation and Paper, "Improved Reliability with Different Materials."
  • Operationally Responsive Space 8 Conference / Space News Article - March 2010. Presentation and Paper, "Nanoeye Program" - Coauthored - highlights the NanoEye 10-inch satellite payload.
  • "Silicone Gel Potting used for Underhood Engine Controller using Ball Grid Array Components." Paper on the effect of silicone gel potting viscosity on BGA and surface mount solder joints fatigue and the resulting life and reliability - submitted to SAE 9/15/00 - presented at SAE, March 2001.


    Tuition for this three-day course is $3,955 per person at one of our scheduled public courses. Onsite pricing is available. Please call us at 410-956-8805 or send an email to