Test Connections

BlueSpan Lighting, a manufacturer of LED lighting based in Portugal, needed a solution to test power supplies for its new LED street lights, which uses LUXEON Rebel LEDs. The new street lamps, initially sold in Portugal, offer a revolutionary new municipal lighting solution that ensures uniformity and reduced glare, a correlated color temperature tuned for the environment, and a 7-year warranty. BlueSpan recently announced that the new street light is being considered for broader implementation throughout the country. The product's technical design came together in a very short period of time, so BlueSpan also needed to quickly develop a test solution to bring the new offering to market. BlueSpan worked with Geotest’s partner and distributor Accelonix to integrate Geotest’s solution into BlueSpan’s existing production systems.

The challenge
BlueSpan was looking for a compact, cost-effective test solution. The company knew that manually testing the power supply assemblies was possible, but given the production volumes, manual testing would not be a viable option. BlueSpan  needed an automated test setup that would support panelized boards and could be  tested in-line using an automated handler. Additionally, with no previous
LED Street Light

The new street light from BlueSpan using LUXEON Rebel LEDs will help cities reduce energy consumption and mercury, and provide great lighting

experience in integrating a test system with a board handler and with no formal test specs, BlueSpan looked to Accelonix to develop and integrate the overall test solution.

The test requirements
A test system that would functionally test the LED lighting's power supply
A turnkey solution
Supports testing of eight panelized PCBs  
Quick turnaround for test system development and deployment
Integrate the test system into BlueSpan’s existing handler

Because Accelonix was already an established provider, it was able to present BlueSpan with a turnkey solution that met the customer's requirements – covering all its needs with a solid, cost-effective, quality solution.

The solution
The key factors that made Geotest’s test system the best fit for BlueSpan's needs were the expertise in ATE and automation that Accelonix offered in conjunction with the features associated with the Geotest Basic Automated Test System (GBATS) platform, which offers a compact, off-the-shelf, integrated test solution and a quick delivery time.

BlueSpan’s initial bench top configuration included:
Geotest's TS-710 basic functional test platform
An additional external AC source

The key challenge associated with providing the integration between Geotest’s test platform and the existing hardware and handler was fast test time and high production throughput, which was accomplished by integrating the GBATS into the production line. This included interfacing the GBATS with the board handler as well as developing a program that could support panelized testing of the PCB assemblies. Figure 1 shows the types of panelized boards involved.

Panelized Boards
Figure 1 — Panelized Boards

The final test configuration included:
A standard GBATS TS-710 tester and Geotest's ATEasy test executive and test development environment with an additional Geotest GX6315 high-current relay switch card and a high-voltage PXI switch card (24 x SPST, 1000V)
A Chroma C6404 AC source
A resistor load box

The complete solution was integrated with a MyAutomation test handler, as shown in Figures 2 and 3.

Production Line with GBATS and Handler
Figure 2 — Production Line with GBATS and Handler

 Geotest Basic Automated Test System (GBATS) Platform Integrated with Handler
Figure 3 —  Geotest Basic Automated Test System (GBATS) Platform Integrated with Handler

Success on multiple levels
Geotest’s solution succeeded for BlueSpan on several levels:
BlueSpan was looking for a compact integrated system, and GBATS offered a very small footprint in a “ready out of the box” solution. In addition, the GBATS mass interconnect simplified system cabling.
BlueSpan needed help in integrating the tester with the handler, and Accelonix was able to provide the integration services immediately.

BlueSpan was looking for a cost-effective solution and a short lead time, and GBATS, being a COTS product provided a cost-effective solution with quick delivery.

ATEasy: Simplifying and accelerating the implementation
BlueSpan has enjoyed a very positive experience with Accelonix, not only during the sales and implementation process, but also throughout subsequent support for the application. As a result, BlueSpan is extremely happy with the Geotest equipment and has discovered that the solution is easy to work with, not only in operation but also from a programming standpoint.

In fact, after only a few weeks of use, BlueSpan was able to create their own test programs, further customizing the solution. This quick and easy learning curve is typical for ATEasy users. The software is designed to be accessible to users with varied levels of experience, from those with little or no experience (hardware engineers and novice programmers) to very experienced programmers (software engineers and senior test engineers). And because the software is based on an open architecture, ATEasy provides access to a wide range of industry-standard hardware and software interfaces, allowing test applications to be developed quickly and maintained easily.

Are you looking for a customized, turnkey solution? Turn to the experts at Geotest, who can provide what you need quickly.

Want to see how quickly you can design a test application with ATEasy? Try it at no cost! Download your free 30-day trial today.
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