Conformal Coating

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Conformal Coating

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Conformal coating is a specialty polymeric film forming product that protects circuit boards, components, and other electronic devices from adverse environmental conditions. These coatings conform’ to the irregular landscape of the PCB providing increased dielectric resistance, operational integrity, and protection from corrosive atmospheres, humidity, heat, fungus, and airborne contamination such as dirt and dust.

Techspray offers a variety of conformal coating formulas to match field and engineering requirements and is IPC CC 830B, MIL-I-46058C, and UL94-0 Qualified or rated. Specifications generally depend on the type of protection needed: e.g. thermal, moisture, and static resistance.

Coatings contain Opti/Scan (except LED Coating) to allow quality control inspection of coverage and evenness of the coating on a PCB. A coated board can be passed under a standard, low-cost UV (short-wave black) light, and the coated areas glow. The brighter the glow, the thicker the coating.

Application methods:

  • Dip – High volume method to fully coat boards. Thickness of the final coating is controlled by viscosity and withdrawal speed from the pot.
  • Conformal Coating Spray – Computer controlled selective spray systems, eliminate the need for masking. Higher viscosity than full coverage sprayer is generally needed (70-200 cps) to create precise edge definition and prevent splattering.
  • Manual Application – Aerosol and brushing are generally used for small production runs, rework and repair. If using for rework, the aerosol needs to be compatible with the original coating.

Conformal Coating Selection Guide

Picture of Fine-L-Kote SRV Silicone Conformal Coating Fine-L-Kote SRV Silicone Conformal Coating
Silicone conformal coating that is high gloss, ultra-clear, moisture and abrasion resistant
Picture of Fine-L-Kote SRV950 Silicone Conformal Coating – High Viscosity Fine-L-Kote SRV950 Silicone Conformal Coating – High Viscosity
High viscosity silicone conformal coating that is high gloss, ultra-clear, moisture and abrasion resistant, low VOC
Turbo-Coat Acrylic Conformed Coat Turbo-Coat Acrylic Conformal Coating
Acrylic Conformal Coating with the fastest cure, dry to touch in 3 minutes!
Turbo-Coat HV Acrylic Conforming Coat Turbo-Coat HV Acrylic Conformal Coating
Acrylic Conformal Coating with fastest cure, designed for selective spray systems
Fine-L-Kote AR Acrylic Conforming Coats Fine-L-Kote AR Acrylic Conformal Coating
Acrylic conformal coating for high dielectric strength & good moisture and abrasion resistance
SR Silicone Conformal Coating Fine-L-Kote SR Silicone Conformal Coating
Silicone Conformal Coating that's ideal for moisture, thermal and vibration protection
High Viscosity SR Silicone Conformal Coating Fine-L-Kote High Viscosity SR Silicone Conformal Coating
Silicone Conformal Coating is ideal for moisture, thermal and vibration protection
Fine-L-Kote LED Silicone Conformal Coating Fine-L-Kote LED2 Silicone Coating
Silicone conformal coating designed to coat over LEDs
HT High-Temp Silicone Conformal Coating Fine-L-Kote HT High-Temp Silicone Conformal Coating
Silicone coating engineered for superior thermal and moisture resistance
UR Urethane Conformal Coating Fine-L-Kote UR Urethane Conformal Coating
Tough coating with good chemical resistance
Turbo-Coat Thinner Turbo-Coat Thinner
Conformal coating thinner for Turbo-Coat
Conformal Coating Thinner Fine-L-Kote Conformal Coating Thinner
Thin Fine-L-Kote coatings to meet production requirements
Conformal Coating Remover Conformal Coating Remover
Coating stripper for acrylic, silicone and urethane
Conformal Coating Remover XT Fine-L-Kote Conformal Coating Remover XT
Coating stripper for acrylic, silicone, urethane, and component epoxy coatings

FAQ's

Is conformal coating conductive?

No, conformal coatings are non-conductive, or insulative. The job of conformal coating is to isolate the PCB or components from the environment and even components (i.e. high voltage or high heat) from the rest of the board. To do that properly, a coating must have electrically insulating properties with as high of a dielectric withstand voltage (or strength) as possible.

Is conformal coating waterproof?

While conformal coatings can offer a moisture resistant layer of protection, most cannot be considered waterproof. Even if applied heavily, most coatings are semi-permeable, so allow some amount of moisture through. Conformal coating can, however, prevent current leakage or corrosion due to ambient moisture. To truly waterproof electronics, you either need gasketing to seal the electronics within the packaging or cover the electronics with a waterproof encapsulant or potting compound.

Is conformal coating necessary?

Whether or not conformal coating is required depends on the environment the electronic device will operate in, the reliability requirement of the device, and the cost of failure, whether in dollars or human lives. Typical consumer devices are generally not coated because cost is one of the top driving factors, and a coating step certainly adds to that. Devices operating in harsh environments may require coating, and the type of stresses and contamination will point to the best option, whether that is acrylic resin (AR), silicone resin (SR), urethane resin (UR), or some other type of protection. Aviation, aerospace, and medical devices often require coating because of the mission critical nature of these applications.

What does conformal coating do?

Conformal coating is a specially engineered polymeric film-forming product that protects circuit boards, components, and other electronic devices from harmful environmental conditions like moisture, thermal shock, static, vibration, and contamination. These coatings ‘conform’ to the irregular landscape of the PCB providing increased dielectric resistance, operational integrity, and reliability. There are a number of options for coating technologies, and the best option should depend mainly on the protection required. Application method and ease of rework are also important factors, but should generally be considered secondary to the protective performance needed.

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