Automatic troubleshooting on complex printed circuit boards with Polar’s new GRS550 flying probe test system

The predecessor of the recently developed GRS550 flying probe test system not only set high test standards in the electronics industry, but also proved to be economical and very easy to operate. Features that also characterize the new GRS550. At SMTconnect 2024, Polar Instruments GmbH will be exhibiting the latest development at the booth of its German sales partner ATEcare GmbH.

The GRS550 flying probe test system testing a PCB assembly

The GRS550 uses the same proven operating concept as its predecessor, the GRS500. “However, we have completely revised the drive technology. This has enabled us to increase the test speed and positioning accuracy even more,” says Hermann Reischer, Managing Director of Polar Instruments GmbH, explaining the additional benefits of the system. The GRS550 is particularly suitable for fault diagnosis of assemblies where an adapter-based test is not an economical solution. The flying probe test system compares the characteristics of a sample assembly with those of faulty boards using nodal impedance analysis. A video image display is also used to directly compare high-resolution images of the good PCB and the board under test. Powerful CAD-based repair software enables rapid tracing of the faulty net.

The new GRS550 is used for fault diagnosis in prototype construction, new product launches, small series and applications for which a traditional in-circuit test or multipin flying prober is too expensive. The system offers extensive testing options with short preparation times and low costs. The key to this is the extensive use of CAD data in combination with proven fault diagnosis technology. “This allows operators to easily generate important test results without having to carry out complex programming on fully automated systems, which are also usually oversized for these requirements,” says Reischer. “Fault analysis on complex electronic assemblies is not an easy task,” continues Reischer and adds: “The GRS550 was developed for rapid fault localization and thus enables fast and efficient repair of PCB assemblies. This saves the customer time and money and can reduce time-to-market, especially in the area of prototype manufacturing.”

The Flying Probe Testsystem GRS550

The GRS550 system is suitable for all component technologies. With a maximum fly height of 100 mm, even assemblies with tall components can be tested. Two live video cameras are available to the operator, with one camera being used for programming and inspection and the second for live monitoring of the probing position.  This enables the GRS550 to diagnose faults in all component technologies such as SMT, PTH and BGA, with the system automatically positioning the test points on the accessible areas of the nets.

Polar Instruments will present the GRS550 to trade visitors at SMTconnect 2024 from June 11 to 13 in Nuremberg at the ATEcare booth, Hall 4, Booth 305.