New SIPLACE setup concept for high-mix electronics production

31 MARCH 2011

Good news for electronics manufacturing sites with frequent product changeovers of small lot sizes: With Random Setup, the SIPLACE team of ASM Assembly Systems (formerly Siemens Electronics Assembly Systems) is introducing an innovative setup concept that significantly simplifies and accelerates the setup procedure. With Random Setup, operators can place feeders and components anywhere on the line or on the feeder table instead of in specific tracks and positions. The SIPLACE placement machines recognize the newly added X-feeders and adjust the placement programs automatically. Electronics manufacturers benefit from significantly faster setups and improved line productivity, because the setups for upcoming products can now be executed efficiently and without having to stop the line. At the same time, converting to Random Setup makes setup errors virtually impossible and significantly reduces the amount of feeders and feeder carts needed in the setup preparation area. The intelligent SIPLACE X-feeders even provide visual aids for the setup process and signal via their built-in LEDs whether they will still be needed for upcoming products or can be safely removed.

“The smaller the lot sizes and more frequent the product changeovers, the more important efficient setup processes become for productivity in electronics manufacturing. Our SIPLACE developers thought long and hard about today’s production requirements. With Random Setup they are now introducing a setup concept that was designed specifically for the needs of modern high-mix environments,” says Hubert Egger, Marketing Manager SIPLACE Software, about the benefits of the new concept. “Instead of minimizing the pure placement time for a product in isolation, which is what is done in traditional setup concepts, Random Setup raises the total line productivity by optimizing the complete throughput time, including setup times.”

New approach: The placement program adjusts to the setup
With SIPLACE Random Setup, the physical setup is not based on the optimized placement program, but the placement program automatically adjusts itself to the actual feeder positions. The operating staff can place the SIPLACE X-feeders in any open slot on the line or on the feeder cart. This can even be done while the line keeps running (hot-swap). The SIPLACE machine recognizes the new feeders automatically based on their unique IDs when they register. If the components and feeders were previously “kitted” by scanning their respective barcodes, the placement machine also receives all the necessary component-related information and adjusts its placement process accordingly. As a result, floating setups can be executed on the line by replacing individual feeders one at a time. The X-feeders even indicate via their built-in LEDs whether they will still be needed for one of the upcoming products or can be removed from the line.
The preparatory kitting process benefits from the Random Setup features as well. At the click of a button, operators can generate a so-called delta setup, which highlights only those components for the next job which are not already installed on the line in their respective feeders. If the setup changeovers are executed with feeder carts, Random Setup speeds up this procedure as well. Since the feeders can be positioned anywhere on the line and in the setup preparation area, with SIPLACE Setup Center verifying each setup, the typical setup errors resulting from a feeder being positioned in the wrong track are now a thing of the past.

Ideal for high-mix environments
Random Setup enables electronics manufacturers who have to deal with small lots, frequent product changeovers or lots of prototypes to increase the total productivity of their SMT lines by minimizing their setup times and their total throughput times. At the same time, Random Setup reduces the feeder and feeder cart inventory in most cases, thus reducing the manufacturer’s assets and improving his capital position.

For more information about ASM Assembly Systems (SIPLACE), please visit

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