Aster Technologies - The unique Integrated DfT workflow from Design to Production

Cesson-Sévigné, France / Apex, Las Vegas, (PresseBox) - During APEX 2011 at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Convention Center in Las Vegas, ASTER Technologies, the leading supplier in Board-Level Testability and Test Coverage analysis products, announces the first tool to provide an integrated workflow for DfT and test coverage analysis from design through to mainstream production.

Design-For-Test is becoming crucial to ensure complex board performances. In the traditional Design flow, DfT is a specific step after the layout phase as addressed by tools such as FabMaster-TestExpert. The CAD file is loaded and a mechanical analysis is performed in order to identify the physical access for In-Circuit or Flying probe test.

With the staggering board density we are now facing, we need to consider the DfT as part of the complete workflow (not just for probe placement), verifying the testability at different stages in order to ensure the highest level of test quality for the minimum test cost.

TestWay Express has been developed to meet this vision for a software tool that will allow users to analyze each stage of the design to production workflow within a single tool.

TestWay Express has been developed to meet this vision for a software tool that will allow users to analyze each stage of the design to production workflow within a single tool.

This is achieved by the following stages:

From Schematic, verify that electrical DfT requirements are adhered to in order to maximize test coverage, optimize test probe placement according to test strategy definition, estimate test coverage, estimate cost modeling, production yield and TL9000 - initial return rates.

From layout, verify mechanical rules, allocate test probes, estimate test coverage based on the real physical access, and generate test programs including input list and test models for the most popular test platforms.

TestWay Express includes 53 CAD importers supporting schematic netlist, layout, schematic graphics and design or test models. This is a key differentiator as other commercial DfT tools work only from the layout stage. TestWay Express operates from native CAD formats and insures the full interoperability between all stages across the design/manufacturing flow.

In the past, test engineers had to use a variety of software tools to (a) verify that a board had been designed with adequate testability in order to maximize test coverage, and (b) verify that the board layout engineer had placed test points where requested. However, once the test points had been validated it was still necessary to develop the ICT or flying probe test program files, which required another process stage. With TestWay Express, all stages are managed within a single tool through an integrated methodology.

Mr Christophe LOTZ, Managing director of ASTER said: "TestWay Express is a perfect solution to manage DfT as part of the overall design to manufacturing flow. It results in a significant cost saving and contributes to significantly increasing board quality.

Test coverage is estimated using theoretical models for a wide range of test and inspection strategies such as APM, AOI, AXI, BST, FPT, ICT etc, and Functional Test, that can be tuned to reflect the test and measurement capabilities of the target tester.

Once the test/inspection programs have been completed, TestWay Express can read the debugged test program or test report and compare the coverage between the estimated and measured analysis using industry standard metrics, and identify any misalignment.

More than 50 coverage importers are available for a wide range of the test/inspection machines used within the industry such as Acculogic (BS, Scorpion, SPRINT); Aeroflex (4200, 5800); Agilent Technologies (i1000, i3070, 5DX, SJ10, SJ50); ASSET; CHECKSUM; CORELIS; Cyberoptics, DrEschke; Europlacer;GOEPEL (CASCON, OPTICON); JTAG Technologies; Mirtec; MYDATA, OMRON; Orbotech; SAKI; SEICA; SPEA (3030, 4040); TAKAYA (APT8000, APT9000); Teradyne (Z1800, Spectrum, GR228x, TS124); TRI (TR7500, TR8001); VI Technology; VISCOM; XJTAG and YESTech.

Visitors to APEX 2011, April 10-14, can come to the ASTER Technologies at Booth 2643, where Aster representatives will be present to provide further details on the product.

ASTER Technologies

ASTER is the leading supplier in Board-Level Testability analysis tools, capitalizing on proven expertise in board testability and strong customer relations. Founded in 1993, ASTER develops a wide range of products dealing with PCB Testability, Viewing and Quality Management. TestWay is a proven solution, used by many PCB design and manufacturing companies worldwide that provides a unique approach to identify electrical testability requirements, compute theoretical test coverage early in the design chain, and check the real test efficiency of running test programs.

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