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Research Papers

Image-Based Closed-Loop Control of Aerosol Jet Printing Using Classical Control Methods

[+] Author and Article Information
Jack P. Lombardi, III

Department of Systems Science and Industrial Engineering,
Binghamton University,
Binghamton, NY 13902
e-mail: jlombar4@binghamton.edu

Roozbeh (Ross) Salary

Division of Mechanical Engineering,
Marshall University,
Huntington, WV 25755
e-mail: salary@marshall.edu

Darshana L. Weerawarne

Center for Advanced Microelectronics Manufacturing,
Binghamton University,
Binghamton, NY 13902
e-mail: dweerawa@binghamton.edu

Prahalada K. Rao

Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering,
University of Nebraska-Lincoln,
Lincoln, NE 68588
e-mail: rao@unl.edu

Mark D. Poliks

Department of Systems Science and Industrial Engineering,
Binghamton University,
Binghamton, NY 13902
e-mail: mpoliks@binghamton.edu

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received July 23, 2018; final manuscript received April 10, 2019; published online May 28, 2019. Assoc. Editor: Laine Mears.

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng 141(7), 071011 (May 28, 2019) (9 pages) Paper No: MANU-18-1562; doi: 10.1115/1.4043659 History: Received July 23, 2018; Accepted April 11, 2019

Aerosol jet printing (AJP) is a complex process for additive electronics that is often unstable. To overcome this instability, observation while printing and control of the printing process using image-based monitoring is demonstrated. This monitoring is validated against images taken after the print and shown highly correlated and useful for the determination of printed linewidth. These images and the observed linewidth are used as input for closed-loop control of the printing process, with print speed changed in response to changes in the observed linewidth. Regression is used to relate these quantities and forms the basis of proportional and proportional integral control. Electrical test structures were printed with controlled and uncontrolled printing, and it was found that the control influenced their linewidth and electrical properties, giving improved uniformity in both size and electrical performance.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Photo of process monitor and alignment cameras on the Optomec AJ-300 used in this study

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Fig. 2

Example images collected in this study from the process monitor (a) and the alignment camera (b). Note that the shading in the process monitor image is due to the lighting and observation at an angle.

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Fig. 5

Layout of the four-point test structures. The central line in the structure was printed controlled or uncontrolled.

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Fig. 4

Diagram of the various inputs, outputs, and software used to monitor and control the AJP process

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Fig. 6

Comparison of observed linewidths at different print speeds by the process monitor and alignment camera. The results are highly correlated and similar. The error bars represent one standard deviation.

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Fig. 11

Plot of average electrical resistance of the controlled and uncontrolled four-point lines using the P controller. The error bars represent one standard deviation.

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Fig. 7

Plot of observed linewidth as a function of print speed, used to find proportional controller gain. The error bars show the standard error of the mean.

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Fig. 8

Photograph of the first set of four-point structures. The dimensions of the four-point test structures are shown in Fig. 5.

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Fig. 9

Plot of average linewidth for the controlled and uncontrolled four-point structures using the P controller. The error bars represent one standard deviation.

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Fig. 10

Plot of linewidth and print speed for the third controlled and uncontrolled four-point structures printed in Set 2. Note how the controlled data has a regular oscillation and is closer to the specified linewidth.

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Fig. 12

A screen capture of the matlab simulink model used to test PID controller designs and create a PI controller that was then implemented on the printer

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Fig. 13

Plot of controlled and uncontrolled average linewidths using the PI controller. The error bars represent one standard deviation. Note that the specified linewidth of 80 μm is within the error bars of all the controlled sets.

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Fig. 3

Graphic depiction of cropping and image analysis at 2 mm/s print speed. The previous image is shown on the left, and the area analyzed and cropped from that image is removed from the current image. The current image is then cropped an analyzed, with the detected line edges shown in blue.

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Fig. 14

Plot of linewidths for the second controlled and uncontrolled lines in Set 2, as well as the print speed used for the controlled printing. Note how the linewidth started above specification, but was brought to the specification and maintained there by the controller.

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Fig. 15

Plot of the average measured resistance of controlled and uncontrolled lines using the PI controller. Note how the controlled sets are almost in line with each other. Error bars represent one standard deviation.

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