LEP, LPO and the environment

LPO helps electronics manufacturers with their own green initiatives by letting them reduce waste, eliminate chemicals that are hazardous to the environment, and the packaging that contained the chemicals.

Lighthouse electronics Protection green benefits include:

Recyclable packaging: Because the LPO materials are shipped in pellet form, special handling of the packaging is not necessary. In liquid potting/conformal coat operations the packaging the material comes in (per EPA requirements) has to be handled by specially trained personnel, cleaned, then disposed of in landfills. Our packaging can simply be recycled with no special handling required.

Reusable runners: When using any molding process, the material still attached to the part after de-molding is called the runner (or sprue). When using a LPO process our specially trained personnel can show you how to re-use a portion of these runners safely and effectively: when using a potting or conformal coat station the purge material can not be reused and must be discarded. Because the potting and conformal coat materials typically have a silicone, urethane, or epoxy base; special handling must be used to dispose of the chemical waste.

Spills: When LPO materials are spilled, the operator or maintenance person need only to get a dust pan and a broom and sweep up the spill. When using a liquid pottant or conformal coating materials, spills must be handled in a very systematic fashion. First the plant environmental team must isolate the area in which the spill occurred; once isolated, some type of absorbent material (clay, oil dry, etc.) is put over the spill. Once dried, the absorbent material is removed and special handling must be employed as there are potentially hazardous chemicals in the spill. After the absorbent material is removed, in some cases, there is a slippery residue left behind--to remove this a solvent based cleaner must be used to finish the clean up.Then all of this material must be disposed of per EPA guidelines.

Workplace safety: LPO material is benign, with no need for measures to protect workers from the material while in production. Urethane (used as a material base in some potting applications) is a carcinogen and the leading cause of workplace asthma.

Energy consumption - material creation: The production of LPO material requires less energy than the production of pottants or conformal coating materials. 

Energy consumption - production: LPO uses less energy in production. In the case of UV cures for conformal coating or cure ovens for potting, the energy savings is great.

Material savings: There is no need for housings and fasteners, saving material volume. Typically LPO requires 50% to 67% less material than potting the same item.