GE Introduces New Module for Planar Computed Tomography

Scans complex electronic assemblies for 2D slice and 3D CT board evaluation without overlaying features in the X-ray image

Wunstorf, Germany - 10 November 2015 - GE Measurement & Control today introduced the new planarCT module for the phoenix microme|x and nanome|x X-ray inspection systems for better and more reliable inspection of solder joints and packages in complex printed circuit board assemblies. Due to the increasing complexity of electronic assemblies, it has become more difficult for inspectors to efficiently and accurately identify defects.

Double-sided multilayer boards and increased numbers of BGAs, POP or QFN make conventional X-ray inspection more challenging because of overlaying structures in the X-ray image. While conventional industrial cone beam micro- and nanoCT® enables high resolving scans of small components, such as sensors or packages, high resolving CT scans of printed circuit board assemblies that examine single layers or packages are not possible without cutting the board.

To resolve these challenges, GE has developed non-destructive planar CT scan technology for slice-based and volume inspection, providing a better evaluation alternative and significant operational benefits.

With GE’s new planarCT module, the user can easily adjust scan parameters, place the board on the inspection table, close the door and start the CT scan. While the high precision manipulation table rotates the region of interest in the X-ray beam, the DXR detector captures the 2D X-ray image series for slice reconstruction. The reconstructed planarCT slice or multislice view allows exact inspection results of a single plane or a whole package without overlaying structures from other board areas.

"With no sample preparation or board cutting required, GE’s planarCT module dramatically enhances evaluation of printed circuit board assembly parts,” said GE product manager Steffen Riechers. “Faster processes, excellent image quality and increased accuracy enable organizations to see real return on investment following the transition to 3D CT inspection."

The planarCT module not only offers extremely clear X-ray images as 2D slice views, but it also enables users to benefit from virtual slicing in any direction. Furthermore, users have the ability to perform a 3D pore evaluation in the CT volume by using GE’s 3D|viewer, which is the CT visualization software included in the phoenix x|act software package.

"Because the planarCT module adds significant inspection value to GE’s phoenix microme|x and nanome|x systems, we’ve made these benefits available to our existing customers with an upgrade option for installed systems,” said Steffen Riechers. “Now operators everywhere can inspect large complex boards with more reliable results than ever before."

About GE

GE (NYSE: GE) is the world’s Digital Industrial Company, transforming industry with software-defined machines and solutions that are connected, responsive and predictive. GE is organized around a global exchange of knowledge, the "GE Store," through which each business shares and accesses the same technology, markets, structure and intellect. Each invention further fuels innovation and application across our industrial sectors. With people, services, technology and scale, GE delivers better outcomes for customers by speaking the language of industry. 

About GE Measurement & Control 

GE Measurement & Control is a leading innovator in advanced, sensor-based measurement; non-destructive testing and inspection; flow and process control; turbine, generator, and plant controls; and condition monitoring. Providing healthcare for our customers’ most critical assets, we deliver accuracy, productivity and safety to a wide range of industries, including oil & gas, power generation, aerospace, metals and transportation. Headquartered in Boston, USA, Measurement & Control has more than 40 facilities in 25 countries and is part of GE Oil & Gas. For further information, visit

About GE Oil & Gas

GE Oil & Gas works on the things that matter in the oil and gas industry. In collaboration with our customers, we push the boundaries of technology to bring energy to the world. From extraction to transportation to end use, we address today’s toughest challenges in order to fuel the future. Follow GE Oil & Gas on Twitter @GE_OilandGas.


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