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Tech Seconds with Phil Zarrow: Kapton Tape for Reflow Profiling

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  • Question: Can I use Kapton tape to attach thermocouples for reflow profiling?
     
    Phil Zarrow: As common as it is, it's not really a best practice to use Kapton tape for attaching the thermocouple for profiling. What you really want to use, and best practice, is to use either a conductive epoxy or a high-temp solder, higher temperature being higher than the solder you're profiling to. The trick to this is to, first of all, use solder wick to remove as much of the preexisting solder from the joint on the assembly that you're working with as possible. Secondly, to use as low in mass, in other words lower volume, of the material that you're attaching with, so you don't skew off the measurements.
     
    Question: Can I use conductive tape such as aluminum tape?
     
    Phil Zarrow: Aluminum tape can be used. And again, in the case of aluminum tape, or whether you're using a material such as conductive epoxy or a high-temp solder, the trick is to use as little material as possible…as little a mass as possible, because you don't want to add tolerance to the things you're trying to measure.
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