PLACEMENT EQUIPMENT STRATEGIES FOR LOW VOLUME HIGH MIX MANUFACTURING
Author: Kevin A. Towle Company: Tektronix, Inc. Date Published: 4/28/1997
Surface Mount International
Abstract: In the early 1990’s, all major manufacturers of surface mount placement equipment were developing high speed turret type placement machines. Each year these turret machines became faster, more accurate, and capable of placing a larger range of components. The typical surface mount line was configured with a high speed turret placement machine to place tape fed components and a multi function placement machine to place tube and tray fed components. This was viewed as the optimal solution for both high and low volume manufacturing. Today these high speed turret type placement machines are being challenged by a system of modular placement machines. The modular line would consist of four or five multi function placement machines. The combined placement rate would be equal to that of the high speed turret machine. This paper will compare these two different equipment configurations in a low volume high mix manufacturing environment. The paper will discuss the advantages, disadvantages, and special needs of each configuration.