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Getting to Know Your Designer
In this issue, we examine how fabs work with their design customers, educating them on the critical elements of fabrication needed to be successful, as well as the many tradeoffs involved. How well do you really know your customer? What makes for a closer, more synchronized working relationship?
In this issue, the biggest names in PCB manufacturing share their economic outlook for the upcoming year and beyond. As you will see, they were all bullish on our industry, but there was some apprehension as well. No one wants to get burned by another the supply chain disruption.
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Simplifying Your DesignNovember 9, 2023 | I-Connect007 Editorial Team
Estimated reading time: 1 minute
It’s safe to say that millions of dollars, not to mention man-hours, are wasted each year because of over-constrained, overly complicated PCB designs. Much of this is due to the increase in signal speeds and rise times, even in “mature” PCBs, and the extra cost is already part of the budget.
For this issue on simplifying PCB designs, the I-Connect007 Editorial Team spoke with IPC instructor Kris Moyer about ways that designers can avoid overconstraining their designs and making them needlessly complex. As Kris says, streamlining your design comes down to having a solid understanding of fab and assembly processes and the silicon tradeoffs that can simplify or overcomplicate your design, as well as the need to start working with fabricators early in the cycle.
Andy Shaughnessy: What are some typical snafus and missteps that you see designers make to overcomplicate their designs?
Kris Moyer: Here’s what often happens: Let’s say you have one connector on your board that needs tight tolerance. But rather than dimensioning to just that connector, locally, designers will do a tight tolerance to the data from the global dimensioning system, which now constrains the entire board.
Or, if they need perfect coplanarity on a BGA part for good BGA mounting, they’ll put co-planarity back over the entire board where they don't need it, because regular chips, gull-wings, and so on don't need the same amount of coplanarity as a BGA—or they'll try to hold layer tolerances: “I need a 2-mil layer plus or minus 10%,” because they know that 10% is normal for tolerance, but they missed the part of the spec that says 10% or 1 mil, whichever is greater. Fabricators can't hold that tight a layer-to-layer tolerance when it's below a certain layer thickness.
Below about a 10-mil thickness, the best fabricators can do layer-to-layer is 1 mil for nominal processing; If you want to hold a tighter tolerance, you're paying for 100 to get five boards. That’s just a couple of examples. Another is overly tight hole tolerances: “I want to have 150-mil diameter hole ±1 mil.” Again, it's unreasonable, right?
To read the rest of this interview, which appeared in the November 2023 issue of Design007 Magazine, click here.
Izumo Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd., a manufacturing subsidiary of Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd., located in Izumo City, Shimane Prefecture, will start constructing a new production building in March 2024.
The Space Development Agency (SDA) has awarded Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) a contract to build 18 space vehicles as part of its Tranche 2 Tracking Layer constellation.
Space Development Agency Awards L3Harris $919 Million Contract to Build Satellites for Missile Tracking Program01/17/2024 | BUSINESS WIRE
L3Harris Technologies received a contract with a potential value of up to $919 million to design and build 18 infrared space vehicles for the Space Development Agency’s (SDA) Tranche 2 (T2) Tracking Layer program that will provide near-global missile warning and tracking coverage.
Flex and rigid-flex PCBs represent exciting technology for designers. Suddenly, boards no longer need to exist along one plane—or along a flat plane at all. Designs can now conform to specific shapes or be bent during use, opening new possibilities for applications with space constraints or flexibility requirements.
In the competitive world of professional sports, scouts and coaches can have a tough time finding the right talent. And the most talented players can have a tough time getting noticed by the right teams.