Electronic Component Shortages and Solutions

Mar 07, 2022

PCB Component Shortages and Solutions The continuing shortage of electronic components is still affecting businesses all over the economy. The shortage and other supply chain crises like increasing port congestion and a deficiency in truck drivers have made electronic device manufacturing more difficult. These strategies can be very effective for businesses trying to navigate the shortage until there is more supply. Other essential components and raw materials are also in short supply -- making manufacturing challenging even when businesses can source the semiconductors or semiconductor-dependent parts they need. The pandemic and challenges in the supply chain have also affected the availability of important passive and power supply components such as multilayer ceramic capacitors…

Frequent Causes of PCB Failure by Poor PCB Design

Dec 28, 2021

Technology in our world is becoming more inundated in everyday life. New electronic products are being developed, and older technologies are being improved. Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs) are an integral part of these products. Technologies are becoming increasingly complex and dense in smaller footprints. This can lead to manufacturability problems due to a poorly designed board. In general, the most frequent causes of failure in a PCB include: Component Failure Components can fail for a variety of reasons. Here are some reasons why poor PCB design practices can cause the failure: Incorrect component footprints Parts are placed too close to each other, causing solder bridging Not correctly using thermal relief makes it challenging to solder parts Putting heat-generating parts at…

What are Test Points in PCB Design?

Dec 08, 2021

What are Test Points in PCB design? A fabricated printed circuit board (PCB) generally goes through an automated test cycle. These tests check for component pins that are not connected to the board through a proper solder joint. Test points are placed on the board during the PCB design process and are used to ensure that the integrity of the component assembly process has not been compromised. A system of probes is used to touch the test points added during the PCB design process. Several different techniques are commonly used for this type of testing: In-circuit test (ICT) The in-circuit test is a system designed to test all of the nets on the PCB at the same time. To test all the nets at once, in-circuit testing (ICT) employs a test fixture that has probes in a position that…

Three Reasons to Outsource PCB Design

Nov 29, 2021

PCBs (printed circuit boards) are an integral part of nearly every electronic product you see or use today. Even though some might be small in size, they can be highly intricate and packed with power. Designing your PCB in-house can often have several disadvantages, especially if you don't have an expert, experienced PCB designer on staff with extensive knowledge of various technologies and methodologies to implement increasingly complex product requirements. Using an outside company with PCB design as its core competency ensures your project is handled by an expert, one whose sole job is to design complex PCBs.  Three Reasons to Outsource Here are three things to consider when deciding whether or not to outsource your PCB design: 1. Easy Access to PCB Design Experts Using an…

Common Misconceptions About PCB Design

Nov 15, 2021

PCB Design and the Trend Toward More Functions on Chips than Circuit Boards Printed circuit boards (PCBs) and Integrated Circuit chips are the foundation of our modern world. As technology advances and innovations are introduced, the PCB industry continues to grow. Printed circuit boards are so standard in today's world that many people don't understand their purpose and design. There is a lot of mystery surrounding the PCB and its function in connecting components within electronic items. There is a difference between a chip and a PCB A PCB is a plate of fiberglass with copper traces that connect components. A chip is an electronic circuit made of a small, flat piece of semiconductor material (usually silicon). The chip is placed in a housing. This is usually a small black box with…

How Can I Become a PCB Designer in 2022?

Oct 25, 2019

How to Become a PCB Designer PCB design is a career path with many opportunities to grow. We see it as improving as PCB technologies continue to become more complex. A PCB designer’s job is vital when it comes to the creation of a product and the printed circuit boards within it. Becoming a PCB designer can be tricky due to the many elements students must learn. We offer tips to start your path to becoming a PCB designer. What Does A PCB Designer Do? The role of a PCB designer is to take a two-dimensional schematic and create three-dimensional renderings that are ultimately used to manufacture the PCB. Designers must follow a series of steps to ensure the board is optimized. What is PCB Design? The first step is to create the board outline with the shape, keepouts, and clearances.…

PCB Design Rule Checks Cut Down Board Respins

Oct 03, 2019

PCB designs commonly undergo multiple respins as a result of inconspicuous signal integrity (SI), power integrity (PI), and electromagnetic interference (EMI) violations. At an average cost of nearly $28,000 per respin, ensuring that a given design meets its performance, time to market, and cost goals is imperative. To help eliminate complicated and difficult-to-diagnose layout violations, some PCB tool suites offer unique electrical design rule checks (DRC). When using DRC analysis as part of the PCB design process, engineers can ensure that their PCBs fall within the proper constraints for many different, advanced electrical design rules. The DRC tool contains fully-customizable SI, PI, EMI, and safety rule checks that enable designers to identify and correct violations before…

Checking PCB Design Schematics for Errors

Sep 22, 2019

A schematic is a crucial step in the physical production of a circuit. It will prevent costly and time-consuming debugging and rework or revisions to PCBs. In PCB design, it is essential for the physical production boards, regardless of whether a schematic is used to assemble it by hand on a breadboard or create a printed circuit board. This article outlines tools and practices we have used over time to reduce errors and create a complete and accurate schematic. Accurate Schematics in PCB Design Begin with Accurate and Complete Symbols Accurate symbols are the foundation of a reliable schematic. You must be familiar with the symbol editor of your schematic capture software. You will still need to be able to see and verify the properties of symbols even if you don’t have to create them…

Design for Manufacturability in PCB Design

Sep 22, 2019

PCB design plays a core role in manufacturing a printed circuit board. The layout process produces a graphical representation of the circuitry necessary to manufacture a PCB. PCB design is a detailed description and visual representation of the circuit. Most of the circuit boards manufactured today are assembled and tested by automated machines, driven in part by the data provided by the PCB files. In this light, the need for a PCB layout becomes evident. PCB Design with Computer-Aided Design Software With the development of CAD tools by several different companies, it is now common for the PCB layout to be prepared using CAD software tools. These computer-based programs offer tools and techniques to effectively and efficiently design a PCB and generate the necessary files to…