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Functional Testing

In-Circuit Testing (ICT)

At Bittele Electronics, we want all of our clients to be fully confident that their products will be in perfect working order before they ship out from our production facility. We employ a variety of strict quality control procedures at every stage of the PCB Assembly Process in order to provide our clients this confidence. From standard services such as visual inspection and Automated Optical Inspection (AOI), to advanced measures such as X-Ray Inspection, and Functional Circuit Testing (FCT), each method comes with its own advantages. When our clients require a complete and meticulous confirmation of their assembled PCBs, they turn to our most meticulous testing method: In-Circuit Testing (ICT).

ICT is often confused with FCT, and indeed the two share some notable similarities: both are performed after AOI and visual inspections, and both involve a Bittele quality assurance technician personally inspecting the boards through the use of test instruments and/or software. The main difference between the two testing methods is that FCT is a so-called “black box” testing method, while ICT is a “white box” method. Simply put, FCT looks for overall functionality of a product without regard to the specifics of its inner workings, while ICT pays attention to individual voltage and current levels throughout the PCB, and might include step-by-step program execution.

Since ICT works on the component level, it can help to localize and issues that may be present on the board, and narrow down the cause to a particular device. This can be extremely valuable in troubleshooting complex Prototype PCB Assembly projects where the design is not yet 100% verified. If any of the PCBs do not pass testing, Bittele can often provide targeted board-level rework to potentially save the batch. Our test engineers will issue a Design For Assembly (DFA) recommendation form to the client after the ICT process, and our quality assurance engineering team will create an 8D Quality Assurance Report for internal process improvement.

At Bittele, we take pride in working closely with our clients to provide flexible services that can be tailored to their individual needs. Our engineering teams will review your specific test requirements for the project in question, set up all of the needed equipment, develop a testing workflow, and design a test jig if necessary. We are equipped with adjustable DC bench power supplies, 200 MHz digital oscilloscopes, arbitrary signal generators, LRC multimeters, and universal IC programmers to handle any type of project.

If you are in need of a tailored ICT solution for your next PCB Assembly project, please feel free Contact Us with your requirements or with any questions you might still have about our ICT process. We can be reached over email at sales@7pcb.com, by toll-free telephone at 1-888-812-1949, or through the 24-hour live chat available on our website at www.7pcb.com.

 
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