An Intro Guide to Prototype Circuit Boards

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Prototype pcb assembly

A printed circuit board is a circuit that has thin conducting strips made of copper which are etched from a layer on a flat insulating sheet. Integrated circuits and other components have also been attached to the board as well.

Prototype circuit boards can be customized to fit any manufacturer’s needs, and here is what you should know about prototype pcb assembly.

There are three major types of pcb fabrication
, single-sided, double-sided, and multi-layered. Single-sided has one copper layer, double-sided has two copper layers, and multi-layer consists of outer and inner layers. This copper sheets are laminated onto non-conductive substrate and are connected with VIAs. VIAs are vertical interconnect access connections, which is an electrical path between two layers of a physical electronic circuit that goes through one or more additional layers.

Typically, there are two methods for prototype pcb assembly, surface mount and through the hole. Through the hole technology uses leads on the components that are inserted through drilled holes on the board and soldered to pads on each opposite side. Surface mount assembly is where the components are placed directly on the surface of the circuit board. This technique is generally used more often than through the hole as it is faster and more efficient.

When it comes to soldering, there are many techniques used to attach the components to the prototype pcb. When you need to produce a large amount, engineers usually use surface mount technology and bulk wave soldering or reflow ovens. But, a higher skilled technician is able to solder small parts like 0201 packages with the dimensions of 0.02 inches by 0.01 inches.

It is important to understand that each board is designed for their own use and has to be the right size in order to fit where it will be placed. In order to ensure this, board engineers used computer design software to estimate and layout different circuit designs on the board along with the holes for the component leads. Because they are typically very small, the spaces between the VIAs are 0.04 inches or smaller.

Want to know more? Contact a pcb manufacturer today!

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