Nearly everything electronic in the universe depends on the printed circuit board (PCB). For many years, the IPC-A-600 Acceptability of Printed Boards and IPC-6012 Qualification and Performance Specification for Rigid Printed Boards documents have set the standard for PCB workmanship quality, giving comprehensive acceptance criteria with full color illustrations and photographs showing all types of printed board surface and internal conditions. Because of its importance to both the PCB manufacturer and assembler, the IPC-A-600 has become one of the most widely used documents ever published by IPC.
The IPC-A-600 Training and Certification Program helps all segments of the electronics interconnection industry improve their understanding of printed board quality issues, greatly enhances communication between PCB manufacturers, their suppliers and their customers and provides a valuable portable credential to industry professionals as well as recognition for their companies.
Printed Board Manufacturers Knowledge of acceptance criteria is essential in tracing nonconforming conditions to their origins in the manufacturing process. The IPC-A-600 Training and Certification Program establishes the important relationship between the IPC-A-600 and the IPC-6012. This program also makes a powerful statement to users of printed boards that a company is serious about continuous quality improvement. Industry-recognized, technically accurate training for anyone involved in PCB fabrication did not exist until now.
Electronics Assembly Companies No one wants to put dozens of expensive components on a defective PCB. IPC-A-600 Training and Certification gives the assembler the information to do a better job at incoming inspection. Knowing acceptable conditions means that PCBs are not needlessly scrapped; knowing nonconforming conditions saves the assembler from an expensive component mounting operation. Certified IPC Trainers working in electronics assembly can forge a more productive relationship with their PCB suppliers.
OEMs and Material/Equipment Suppliers Anyone involved in purchasing or specifying printed boards needs to understand the criteria of IPC-A-600 and IPC-6012. OEMs, like assemblers, perform incoming board inspection and have a huge investment in PCBs. Designers will learn the baseline requirements for board quality for all classes of product. Material and equipment suppliers along with OEMs will sharpen their ability to recognize nonconforming conditions.
The program is built on a train-the-trainer model. Companies involved in fabrication, assembly, or original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) enroll a representative in a twenty-hour training course at any IPC Licensed IPC-A-600 Certification Center. The training program provides a detailed review of the IPC-A-600 criteria and concludes with a qualifying examination. Those who pass the exam are recognized as "IPC-A-600 Certified IPC Trainers" and receive instructional materials to use in "Application Specialist" training. The Application Specialist training is modular and allows for any or all of the four sections of the document to be taught.
Those interested in company-wide quality assurance initiatives have an industry developed and approved, IPC-sponsored program to support their commitment to continuous operations and product improvement. IPC recognition sends a strong message to customers that your company is serious about implementing IPC-A-600.
All IPC-A-600 Certified IPC Trainers receive the instructional materials for teaching the Application Specialist training course, including: