Indian electronics company Bharat Electronics uses SIPLACE SX Low-cost tablet PC manufactured with State-of-the-art SIPLACE placement solutions
Developed, produced and sold by the government-owned Indian electronics company Bharat Electronics, a revolutionary new tablet PC provides the IT basis for several development and training projects in the rural regions of the Indian subcontinent. In order to make the device very low-cost, Bharat Electronics kept the design costs as low as possible and also minimized the manufacturing costs by producing the model on their SIPLACE SX line which, with its high flexibility features, provided the company with the perfect platform for its unparalleled project: it offered the ease of use and high speed required for the ultra-fast development and production of the tablet. With its SIPLACE SpeedStar and MultiStar heads, for example, the two SX machines were able to handle a great range of components. The platform’s replaceable gantries offered further possibilities to customize and meet Bharat’s exact needs.
Bharat Electronics Ltd. (BEL) has been a Siemens customer since 1993. Back then, the government-owned company needed help in setting up an SMT production line for military and communication electronics. SIPLACE, at that time a business unit of Siemens, impressed management not only with the advanced technology of its placement machines, but with its cooperative and direct local support capabilities. As a result, virtually each generation of SIPLACE machines has been in use in the various BEL plants ever since: SIPLACE HS/SP, SIPLACE F4, S-27 and the SIPLACE D-series.
Special tablet PC to promote rural development The partnership of BEL and SIPLACE entered into a new phase in 2011, when BEL won the contract to develop a tablet PC with which the Indian government wanted to promote development aid studies as well as education and development projects in the poor rural regions of the country. In only five months, BEL engineers developed a tablet PC with several special features for its target segment. BEL began shipping the first models immediately after their introduction. Important factor in this success story: the company’s decision to use SIPLACE machines for this project.
SIPLACE SX lowers production costs The project was under enormous time and performance pressure. Apart from developing the computer in the first place, the tablet PCs had to be transitioned from prototype to production phase in record time, in order to effectively support the government., BEL engineers decided that the SIPLACE SX would be the ideal and by far the most efficient platform to produce the new tablets in volume and at the challenging price. Subsequently the SIPLACE team handled BEL’s requirements with top priority and by working closely with the SIPLACE headquarters in Munich, the Indian SIPLACE subsidiary managed to ship and set up a SIPLACE SX line in record time. Two SIPLACE SX2 machines, which are now the core of the SMT line for the high-volume tablet production project at BEL, were delivered. The first machine handles the fast placement of standard components with two 20-nozzle SIPLACE CP20 SpeedStar heads. The second machine is equipped with two SIPLACE CPP MultiStar heads to provide the flexibility and bandwidth needed to process the remaining components. For some tablet versions with unusual components ("odd shapes"), the SIPLACE TwinHead is available to seamlessly handle the placement. The line also includes a DEK printer and a Vitronics reflow oven. To avoid unnecessary downtime and non-conformance costs, the line uses the SIPLACE Setup Center software to support and verify the setups of the intelligent X-feeders. The production runs in two eight-hour shifts on six days a week.
250,000 tablet PCs have been produced in only five months In only five months, 250,000 tablet PCs have been produced with the SIPLACE state-of-the art SMT platform. The computers are used for surveys, studies and to provide access to information, for example to coordinate development projects and activities more effectively and target-oriented than before. "Companies like BEL that have to produce electronics at extremely low cost are best served with the latest SMT technology. With their flexibility, component spectrum, placement accuracy and verification capabilities, our SIPLACE SX platforms deliver the high efficiency manufacturers require by minimizing error rates and downtimes. We are proud that we were able to play a significant role in this unusual and beneficial project by working closely with BEL," says P. Damodaran at SIPLACE India.
P. Damodaran of SIPLACE India offered his support to Bharat throughout the project. "We are proud that we were able to play a significant role in this unusual and beneficial project by working closely with BEL", he says.