Desoldering the CCD chip from the curcuit board:


With the help of a friend, the CCD chip was succesfully desoldered and removed from the circuitboard. An 8 pin IC socket was soldered on the circuit board and the CCD chip tested okay after insertion. Here are my notes to anyone considering a CCD chip removal.

An antistatic mat and wrist strap was used to avoid static damage.

I bought a grounded tip soldering iron that was available from Radio Shack (#64-2051). This is a 15 Watt soldering iron with a fine tip that is recommended for small static sensitive electronic projects. However, the iron did not produce sufficient heat for desoldering the chip and a higher wattage non-grounded soldering iron was used instead.

A friend that has worked in the past as an electronic techee offered to help with my attempts to desolder the CCD chip. I am an electronic engineer and have done limited soldering over the years, but without his help I doubt that I would have been able to remove the CCD chip without damaging it. A steady and skilled hand is needed here. (UPDATE: I have since successfully desoldered a chip on my own.)

Solder wick (Radio Shack 64-2090) was held next to each pin with the soldering iron and the solder was wicked away from each in turn, allowing the chip to cool between each pin. Using a magnifying glass it was found that all of the solder was not wicked out of the socket holes. The other side of the circuit board was then worked on (CCD chipside) and again the solder wick was used with the iron on each pin to remove the remaining solder on this side of the board. Using a magnifying glass it appeared that all solder had now been removed. TheCCD chip is mounted very flush on the circuit board which makes it difficult to pry off. An exacto razor knife that has a thin flat head blade was used at the base of the chip and with a little pressure the chip broke loose and was removed.

An 8-pin low profile socket (Radio Shack 276-1995) was soldered on the circuit board using the 15 watt soldering iron. This was used for testing the CCD chip after being resoldered, but it will also serve as the connector for the ribbon cable that will be installed to connect the cooled CCD chip to be mounted on a cold plate/peltier device.

A note of caution: I was planning to bend the 8 pins of the CCD chip outward from the chip at a 90 degree angle for easier mounting on the cold plate of the peltier. My friend advised against this because of the manner in which the pins are connected to the CCD package; they can be easily broken off.