PCBA Test System

The Challenge

A flow meter manufacturer needed a small, modular test platform for printed circuit board assembly (PCBA) acceptance test.  Success of the project would be measured by the ability to accomplish this task accurately, cost effectively and with minimal cycle time.

The Solution

TCB Engineers specified a National Instruments PXI system as the basis for the test system because of the wide availability of modules, flexibility in configuration and small size due to the inclusion of a Windows-based controller.  The Test-X MT-100 bed-of-nails fixture was specified due to its small size, modularity and ease customization.  A separate fixture was developed for each PCBA to be tested and a set of standardized connectors were included to facilitate quick change-over.

Modular PCBA Test System
Modular PCBA Test System

Test software was written in LabVIEW and sequenced using TestStand, which enabled a host of advanced features, including reliability testing and insertion of test data into a database.  Ultimately, eight PCBA’s were implemented using the methodology above and an additional system test fixture designed for the final product configuration.


The modular approach presented herein allowed our customer to leverage their test equipment budget across multiple test fixtures, while at the same time facilitating future capacity increases through the purchase of additional PXI chassis’.  This creativity and flexibility demonstrate TCB Engineers’ unique ability to provide complete solutions to complex problems.

Services Used


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