Koh Young

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ROCHESTER HILLS, Mich. (March 15, 2022) — Even as high-performance electronics assembly veterans, ADCO Circuits still seeks opportunities to collaborate with partners across the globe to solve problems and find innovative solutions that improve product performance in the field. Based in Rochester Hills, Michigan, ADCO provides services from circuit board assembly to systems-level box-build that range from prototype to volume production. The company’s drive for the highest possible performance includes continuous investments in equipment and people that provide unmatched quality, on-time delivery, and a culture of precision.

ADCO serves a wide range of companies in high-performance industries such as aerospace, military, automotive and medical. The ability to pivot and think creatively is essential to meeting the ever-changing needs of companies that rely heavily on technology. ADCO Operations Manager Kevin Barrett said, “We don’t stand still — our job is to keep moving. We keep asking, ‘What’s next?’ Because that’s the industry. If you don’t change today, you’re behind tomorrow.”

ADCO recently collaborated with a specialty machine manufacturer Koh Young to adapt an SMT AOI machine to inspect through-hole solder joints. In early 2020, ADCO’s solder team was spending hours each day on manual inspections, a task that Barrett described as timely and inefficient. He explained, “When I have four or five solderers just looking at boards when they could be soldering, that affects our productivity, and ultimately our turnaround times. We needed a solution.”

Because no company was publicly offering through-hole solder joint inspection at the time, ADCO approached Koh Young, which specializes in inspection equipment, to see if they might be interested in working together to advance that capability. ADCO invested in the boards, the time, and the people, and Koh Young provided the equipment and training. There were already some applicable algorithms written, so ADCO was able to fine-tune Koh Young’s initial work in a real-world setting instead of a lab environment.

“Throughout the process, there was an understanding that it might never work,” said Barrett. “It took us six months to get it up and running and a year to get it fine-tuned. We would collect the data and images and send them to Koh Young at the end of the shift. The next day they would come back with updates and solutions. Together, we started getting better and better at it.”

This innovation has had a direct impact on ADCO’s customers as well. Not only does the machine more efficiently inspect the resulting data, it allows ADCO to analyze trends and share them with customers. In turn, ADCO’s customers are able to make design modifications that produce better yields, which saves time and money. As Barrett said, “It’s a faster, better, more efficient process.”

“Our goal is to do whatever it takes to improve product performance,” added Barrett. “Building and sustaining positive relationships with equipment suppliers and being open to new ideas is just a part of how we do business.”

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About ADCO Circuits

ADCO Circuits, Inc., established in 1981 in Rochester Hills, Michigan, provides electronic circuit board assembly and module services to a wide range of companies in the industrial, medical, automotive, telecommunications, and aerospace/military equipment markets. As a full-service turnkey supplier of custom electronics, ADCO provides support from design and prototyping to new product introduction and full-rate production. Its state-of-the-art, 53,000-square-foot facility handles low- to medium-volume assembly and test. Advanced capabilities include an automated stockroom, automated selective soldering, and Flex-SMT lines with STI and AOT and off-line X-Ray. ADCO Circuits is IS0 9001, AS9100, and IATFI6949 certified, and ITAR and GIDEP registered.

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