5 Replies Latest reply on Dec 11, 2013 4:58 AM by paul456

    applying protective coating to D54250WYK to prevent corrosion of pcb & metal parts from environment ?

    paul456

      Thank you for your reply.  Many years ago when I was in design, the circuitboards of equipment for worldwide use, after assembly were dipped in conformal coating to prevent corrosion and other damage from the environment.    I travel in the tropics a lot and notice for example, that laptop USB port and earphone socket connections become unreliable unless protected by covers.  Likewise, on some laptops, internal connections, eg HDD connectors get unreliable, showing signs of corrosion.

       

      I see the NUC uses outside air for ventilation.   I have 2 questions on that:   Is the D54250WYK and Wireless-AC 7260 protected against the environment with conformal coating or equivalent ?

       

      I seem to recall, also many years ago, on cheaper unprotected equipment, for 'aftermarket use' there was a silicone sealant applied from an aerosol can, which being soft, could be easily removed if circuit components or multi-board assemblies need to be replaced.

       

      Can you recommend a commonly available (from amazon.com or similar) coating, that can be safely applied to the assembled NUC board to protect the completed kit, including its RAM, SSD, 7260.HMW ?

       

      At last I see UK vendors beginning to stock the Haswell NUC, eg. AmazonUK but part no. is 'BOXD54250WYK', which according to a much earlier Intel post  is 'pre-production' without a power cord and that 'production' units for UK will have '3' appended to the part no with UK power cord.  Apart from buying a mains lead separately, is there any other disadvantage in buying the 'pre-production' part ?

       

      Thank you

        • 1. Re: applying protective coating to D54250WYK to prevent corrosion of pcb & metal parts from environment ?
          sylvia_intel

          Please allow me to ask the engineering team if this is possible since as far as I know any customization done to the device could void the warranty of it.


          I would like to let you know that the product with part # BOXD54250WYK is not a pre-production part.  It is actually a retail unit. A preproduction part is usually distributed to hardware and software manufacturers to allow them to develop products prior to the introduction of a product.

          • 2. Re: applying protective coating to D54250WYK to prevent corrosion of pcb & metal parts from environment ?
            paul456

            While awaiting the result, as you mention warranty, obviously the aim of my question is to ensure a long life for the product, and not to void the warranty in doing so.  If your Quality Assurance does apply a conformal coating or equivalent to the pcb's, then clearly no point in applying more, although there is then the exposed metal of the mPCIe cards (7260 & SSD), which as observed on laptops in the tropics, internal but exposed hdd connectors have corroded and caused failure.    When I worked in design, such failures were reduced using the methods described.

             

            Regarding my inquiry on the country specific SKUs, I was paraphrasing advice I read on the Intel website back around September time, but when searching just now could not find it, but thank you for your advice anyway. So as the cordless SKU is not a preproduction part, I guess I can assume it has no other disadvantages.

            • 3. Re: applying protective coating to D54250WYK to prevent corrosion of pcb & metal parts from environment ?
              paul456

              @sylvia_intel.   It is over a week since since you passed my enquiry to Engineering, but no answer posted. 

               

              The NUC has a good high ambient temperature spec so I assume it is specified to be sold & used worldwide.

               

              As noted in my post of 28 November, I have seen a number of laptops in tropical areas failing due to corrosion of connectors, both internally eg. hard-disk connectors, and external USB connectors.  (amazon sell rubber caps to protect external connectors, but that leaves the inside)

               

              The NUC requires to draw outside air in for cooling, so all internal components and connectors are exposed to the environment.  My question was, a) is the D54250WYK pcb protected by conformal coating or equivalent against corrosion by the usual range of world environments, and b) notwithstanding the answer to a) have you any recommendations for protecting the NUC including the memory and mPCIe connections from corrosive atmospheres ?

              • 4. Re: applying protective coating to D54250WYK to prevent corrosion of pcb & metal parts from environment ?
                sylvia_intel

                Paul456, sorry for the delay.  According to the Engineering team we do not apply any coating to the board.  The NUC is a product that still requires parts to be added (such as memory, mSATA, etc.), and all of these connectors must be kept clean of such materials. For particularly sensitive connections where we have identified a risk of corrosion that may impact performance, we use parts that will aid against corrosion. For example, we typically ensure that DIMM connectors have a thicker layer of gold to help protect against corrosion. This will not guarantee that all possible corrosion is prevented as there are sure to be environments out there that can generate problems.


                Then about aftermarket products: Some of these aftermarket coatings do not fully dry and this will result in attraction and accumulation of airborne dusts and fibers that can lead to issues with cooling of the board or system components. There are also potential materials compatibility issues where the conformal coating could react with or degrade the board components or solder mask.  Heating and cooling cycles that occur during normal board operation can aggravate material compatibility issues.

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