"Soldering a capacitor without flux" by Aisart via Wikimedia, CC BY-SA 3.0The fourth annual IPC Hand Soldering World Championship at the 2015 IPC Apex Expo on February 26 drew fierce competitors — the eight victors from earlier IPC hand-soldering competitions in China, Europe, Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and the United States — to the world championship event. The national champions were challenged with building a functional electronics assembly within a one-hour time limit.

Completing the championship round with a nearly perfect score of 247 points out of 248, Min Seok Kim, Samsung Thales Company Ltd. (Korea), was crowned champion. He won a $1,000 cash prize, a new Metcal MX5210 soldering station and bragging rights as the world’s best hand solderer in 2015.

Also with a score of 247 points but with a slightly slower time, Hidemasa Kihara, Toshiba Design & Manufacturing Service (Japan), earned second place in the championship. Hasrol Mizam B. Hassan, HGST Technologies (Malaysia), took third place with a score of 244.

Assemblies were judged by Master IPC Trainers Helena Pasquito, EPTAC Corp.; Robert Fornefeld, L-3 Communications; and Shelly Holt, L-3 Communications.

“Those who cheered on the competitors got a first-hand look at the best-of-the-best hand soldering talent across the globe,” said Kris Roberson, IPC manager of certification product development and competition coordinator. “We look forward to the upcoming hand-soldering competitions taking place in Europe and Asia.”

For information on upcoming IPC Hand Soldering Competitions, visit www.ipc.org/hsc.