Conformal Coatings for Electronic Printed Circuit Board Protection:

  • Ultra-Hydrophobic
  • Super Non-Hygroscopic (Do Not absorb or Retain Moisture)
  • Moisture Blocking

Protective Coating for Automotive Electronics, Aerospace and Military Electronics, Marine and Shipboard Electronics, Solar Power Electronics, Medical Electronics, Mobile Consumer Electronics and Outdoor Electronics

Power generation windmills as well as supplementary solar power generation and their corresponding conversion electronics, when in an extremely corrosive environment like salt-fog, require protection beyond ordinary consumer coatings.

“Whether solar, wind, or any other renewable energy technology, electronics are the critical component to convert, invert, connect, transmit, track, regulate and monitor the system. The electronics are, however, often the weak spot in all systems.

Take solar PV technology. Currently solar panel/module systems carry a warranty of 25-30 years. Most inverter electronics need replacement in 10-15 years. In wind turbines failure of the electronics within the nacelles are the leading cause of downtime and repair expense for OEM’s and wind farm operators.

While there definitely are going to be upgrades as technology advances over the years, the goal should be to upgrade because it is wanted, not because of a failure that requires an emergency repair and replacement.

The question is then, how to protect these densely populated and highly sophisticated electronics so ‘long-life’ becomes a reality. For many reasons, typical conformal coatings are not the answer.” (http://www.renewableenergyfocus.com/view/31842/coatings-protecting-renewable-energy-equipment/)

AIT’s CC7130-E has been proven to provide unparalleled protection for electronics working in these and even harsher application environments including salt fog laden with sodium and chloride ions, corrosive acid rains laden with sulfur dioxide and hydrogen sulfide, and direct salt water immersion.

Printed circuit boards or printed wiring boards (PCB or PWB) with electronic components used in different industries are generally subjected to harsh operating conditions. Conformal coatings protect the circuitry from environmental conditions, such as water spray, moisture condensation, salt water and spray, vibration, chemicals, and other hazards. Conformal coatings also extend the working life of the circuit while ensuring better performance. The traditional conformal coating is typically thin, between 25 to 75 microns thick. Silicones, acrylics, epoxies, and polyurethanes are typical conformal coatings. They have been proven to be inadequate for this harsh application environment for the extended service life expected.

Automotive electronics, electrical equipment and electrical wiring are some of the most exposed electronics that are used outdoors.  AIT’s CC7130-E can be easily applied via brush or spray to protect electric terminals and electronics from moisture, water and other contaminants.

CC7130-E is available from AITMART online:  http://www.aitechnology.com/store/ for those that wish to protect automotive electronics.

AI Technology, Inc. has developed and engineered coatings for different applications and has designed a group of conformal coatings for extreme protection against condensing moisture, salt fog and spray and salt water immersion.  AIT also produces molecularly flexible coatings for extreme environments, including the humid equators, aerospace, underwater and on the marine seacoast.

Sealed but not hermetically sealed electronics must be protected with a good conformal coating to avoid corrosion from condensed moisture on humid days.

Printed Circuit Boards and objects needing protection can be brushed, sprayed or dipped in protective coating and will air dry within 60 minutes without the need for extensive tools and equipments. One of the easiest to use, novel non-toxic based solution of CC7130-E is designed for those not requiring long-term water immersion. The toluene free, non-toxic solvent CC7130-E has been proven to last for years for device immersion in water.  When applied to marine and outdoor electronics, CC7130-E provides extreme protection against salt water, salt spray and salt fog exposure. The effective thicknesses of CC7130-E can be as thin as 25 to 50 micron. However, with its low Tg at -55C , even dip coating with thick sections as much as 100-300 microns that other conformal coatings will shortened the coated electronics due to stress induced will not adversely affect the reliability other than improving the robustness of your finished electronic devices.

Additional advantages of CC7130-E over traditional acrylic based coatings are:

  1. Extreme ease of application methods and “curing” time with or without heat
  2. Much lower dielectric constant and loss with CC7130-E that are comparable to silicone but without silicone contamination issues
  3. Easy rework or repairs using CC7130-E, even in the least industrial environment
  4. Superior performance against water condensation, moisture, water immersion and salt fog and spray corrosion

Outdoor LED lights including LED signal lights and their internal electronics are some of the outdoor electronics that can benefit from the conformal coating protection of CC7130-E. The coated electronics life will be extended to match the intrinsic life of the LED light itself.

Conformal Coatings for Electronic Circuit Board Protection and their Relative Merits
CC7130-E UVHC7150-E
“Curing Mechanism” Air dry @ <60 min

(IPA solvent evolution)

UV and/or Heat

Dual curing

Optical Transparency 70% Transparency >90% Transparency
Ease of Repair Hard Nylon Brush

IPA (Isopropyl-alcohol) wipe

Abrasion Brush
Water Immersion Resistance Good Good
Moisture and Spray Resistance Outstanding Good
Salt Water Immersion Resistance Good Good
Salt Fog and Spray Resistance Outstanding Good
Temperature Range & Flexibility Good

Tg @ -40°C

12,000 psi modulus

>100% Elongation

Good

Tg @ -40°C

16,000 psi modulus

>60% Elongation

Effective Protective Thickness 10 to 30 micron 25-75 micron
Dielectric Constant and Loss 3.6/0.02 @1 KHz 4.2/0.02 @1 KHz
Viscosity 1,000 cps 2,000 cps
Chemical Resistance Outstanding Outstanding
Solvent Resistance Moderate to poor for most polar solvents

Outstanding for petroleum solvents

Good to outstanding for almost all solvents
Abrasion Resistance Pencil Hardness: 2H

Designed for repair

Pencil Hardness: 2H

Designed for repair

Conformal Coating Heat/Moisture Classification Designed for Class 1 and 2 applications

Not recommended for long-term direct water immersion

Suitable for Class 1, 2 and 3 applications with extended 85°C/85%RH exposure
Fungi Resistance

UV Fluorescence

UV Resistance

Fungi resistant per spec

UV fluorescent for ease of inspection and verification

Good

Fungi resistant per spec

UV fluorescent for ease of inspection and   verification

Good

Outdoor solar controlling circuits and power electronics are exposed to extreme conditions of thermal cycling and usage over 20 years. While the solar cells and panels may survive under the condensing moisture and water spray conditions, the solar panel electronics will benefit from the conformal coating protection of CC7130-E.

The following are some of the critical comparative data for the traditional conformal coating materials to that of AIT pioneering new material technology for protecting printed wiring boards and electronic devices:

TYPE PRIMARY AND CRITICAL PROPERTIES FOR PRINTED CIRCUIT BOARD (PWB) CONFORMAL COATING
Material Costs Ease of Application Costs of Repair Tg (°C) Thickness for Stress Control Moisture Absorption-Retention (%) Moisture Penetration (gm/m2/day/2) Salt Fog Tolerance Sulfur Dioxide and Acid Rain Penetration Temperature Range
Acrylic Low Brush, dispense, spray, (dip-coating is not recommended) Low 10   to   60 40-60µ (Thicker coating will shorten MTTF) 0.3 550 Fair Fair Up to 125°C
Epoxies Medium Brush, dispense, spray, (dip-coating is not recommended) High 50   to   90 40-60µ (Thicker coating will shorten MTTF) 0.5-1.0 20-37 Fair Fair Up to 150°C
Polyurethanes Medium Brush, dispense, spray, (dip-coating is not recommended) High 50   to   90 40-60µ (Thicker coating will shorten MTTF) 0.25-0.80 37-57 Fair Fair Up to 125°C
Silicone High Brush, dispense, spray, dip-coating High <-55 Not Critical (Flexible and stress-free) 0.01 70-1872 Poor Poor Up to 200°C
Parylene Very High Vacuum High ? <5µ ? 16-217 Good Good Up to 125°C
http://www.academia.edu/1902960/Coating_materials_for_electronic_applications_polymers_processes_reliability_testing (Source for data of moisture penetration and absorption for acrylics, epoxies, polyurethanes, silicones and Parylene)

Epoxy, acrylic or traditional hard and hydrophilic polar protection coatings are not nearly as effective as super hydrophobic conformal coatings such as AIT’s CC7130-E.  With epoxy or traditional hydrophilic protective coatings, moisture can still migrate underneath the circuit board, causing corrosion and degradation such as swelling on the supposedly protected area and peeling of the protection.

AIT engineering, chemists, and scientists are standing by ready to serve you.  Contact us below:

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AIT sales and customer service: 1-609-799-9388 or 1-800-735-5040, Fax: 609-799-9308