Kurtz Ersa Magazine

Ersa Best Practice: Prodrive Technologies

HOTFLOW THREE: A new era in reflow soldering

Prodrive Technologies is one of the fastest growing technology companies in Europe. The Dutch electronics and mechatronics company, with additional subsidiaries and production sites in the U.S. and China, manufactures a wide range of high-tech products in the fields of electronics, software and mechanics for customers in a wide variety of markets. At Prodrive Technologies, all signs point to growth – to achieve set goals, the company is expanding its production capacity with an Ersa HOTFLOW THREE reflow soldering system.

HOTFLOW THREE at Prodrive Technologies
Easy accessibility of components makes machine maintenance uncomplicated and fast

High throughput and economic efficiency characterize successful SMD production. However, ease of maintenance and sustainability are also central to the production concept of Prodrive Technologies. With the Ersa HOTFLOW THREE, the company is investing in a convection reflow system that combines all these requirements. The proven technology of the HOTFLOW series has been further developed to make the reflow soldering process even more sustainable with the HOTFLOW THREE. In comparison, nitrogen consumption can be reduced by up to 25% and power consumption by up to 10%. At 59 dB, the HOTFLOW THREE also operates at a low noise level – important, especially when the system runs six days a week in multi-shift operation, as is the case at Prodrive.

Ersa HOTFLOW THREE with three-stage cleaning system for up to twelve weeks of continuous operation
The HOTFLOW THREE enables inspiring machine uptimes (OEE) with up to twelve weeks of continuous operation without maintenance intervals thanks to the three-stage Ersa Smart Cleaning System; the picture shows the SMART CONDENSATION UNIT, which, like the other two elements, is perfectly accessible

Low maintenance thanks to triple cleaning system


Within an SMT line, the reflow soldering system has the highest maintenance requirements, which is why ease of maintenance and low downtime are essential. Contamination (so-called condensate) caused by outgassing of PCBs, components or flux must be removed regularly to ensure consistent quality of the assemblies. The HOTFLOW THREE was developed specifically to meet these requirements. The result is a cleaning system consisting of three units: SMART ELEMENTS® granulate filter, SMART PYROLYSIS CLEANER, SMART CONDENSATION UNIT.


The SMART ELEMENTS® filter and the SMART PYROLYSIS CLEANER already eliminate a large proportion of the dirt particles. In the condensate separation unit (SMART CONDENSATION UNIT), significantly less condensate arrives than in other common systems. This leads directly to an increase in productivity and longer operating times, as maintenance is required much less frequently. The individual components are quickly and easily accessible so that the line can resume production as quickly as possible. The low condensate formation also has a positive effect on the quality of the assembly – the contamination caused by outgassing of components, PCB or flux during cooling on the assembly is also minimized.

Ersa HOTFLOW THREE offers unique efficiency through exclusive motor and control unit
Unique efficiency: The SCPU motor and control unit developed exclusively for Ersa reduces energy consumption: -25% nitrogen, up to -20% heat dissipation, up to -10% electricity - and operates up to 3 times quieter!

Unique sellin point SCPU®

Stable and homogeneous temperature profiles with minimum ΔT and maximum machine availability are essential requirements for a modern reflow soldering system. Therefore, the development of the HOTFLOW THREE focused on process gas cleaning and energy transfer performance. The interaction of the factors gas flow, energy absorption and energy transfer to the product are essential for a perfect temperature profile. The HOTFLOW THREE uses convection as the heating technology. The SMART CONVECTION POWER UNIT® (SCPU®) motor and control unit, developed exclusively for the latest Ersa reflow soldering system, ensures an optimized soldering profile and increased process reliability, because thanks to the new geometry of the fan wheels used, an optimum flow is created in the convection system of the individual heating zones.

Unique selling point SCPU®

Ersa HOTFLOW THREE with three-stage cleaning system for up to twelve weeks of continuous operation

Homogeneous heat distribution
over entire process zone

Thanks to the interaction with the new motor control and the special design of the nozzle plate, the HOTFLOW THREE achieves homogeneous heat distribution across the entire process zone. The zones are individually controllable, which allows a perfect adaptation of the temperature profile to the requirements of materials, components and solder paste. At the same time, the SCPU® only consumes the power actually required, thus making optimum use of the energy employed. Even with complex, densely populated PCBs with a wide range of component sizes, the system ensures uniform energy transfer with a stable temperature profile and minimal temperature difference across the entire width.


The HOTFLOW THREE is aimed at all electronics manufacturers who want to achieve the highest production quality and economic efficiency. The maintenance-friendly cleaning systems ensure high availability!


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