In the digital age, technology has become an important part of our everyday lives. Left and right, we make use of appliances to perform tasks as simple as solving math equations and as complex as building structures. Our company, which you can visit online at pcbnet.com, specializes in the creation of PCBs. PCBs are also known as printed circuit boards that are used in almost all electrical appliances. While the existence of computers and the chips that run them are no new concept to society, many people are not aware of the special processes manufacturing companies like us perform in order to create printed circuit boards. We at pcbnet.com aim to familiarize you with the typical production process of PCBs.
Following Are The Guideline To The Manufacturing Process :
The printed circuit board is multi-layered, which means that majority of the manufacturing steps involve putting together various layers of material. However, not all boards need to be made of the same raw materials. For example, the fiberglass used for the substrate may be substituted by high temperature plastics, though it is preferable to invest in more expensive raw materials as these are superior in quality and longer-lasting.
In multi-layered board fabrication, copper foil is placed on top of substrate material while being put through an oven where it is cured. A substrate is used as a surface to support other layers of the PCB and is often at the center. It is more common for copper to be present on both sides of a PCB, but some boards out there may only have one layer of copper on the substrate.
Oftentimes, there is a blueprint-like pattern to be followed by machines when printing onto the PCB. They are presented in the format of Gerber data. This comes into use when the copper coated substrate is put into a CNC machine. CNC machines are run by computers in order to follow a designated control pattern. When in a CNC machine, Gerber data is read and used to know where to drill holes in the board. Copper is plated onto holes that are to be turned into conductive circuits while those that are not are plugged to avoid being plated.
Depending on the company’s style of manufacturing, circuit patterns can be placed either by a subtractive or additive process. Data from the file containing the circuit layout is transferred through photo-resist and imaging. This way, even if something is placed over the copper layer, UV light can expose the pattern of copper circuits.
The board is then coated in tin-lead. Since the tin-lead is not needed to be over the whole board, it is put through a hot oil bath, which melts the tin-lead into a shiny surface. This will not remain on the board for long for it will be etched away in later steps. The photo-resist from earlier does not stay for long because it is stripped from the panel. The circuits that were revealed during the imaging are exposed and defined by chemical means. At this point, the board looks almost finished.
A solder mask is placed on top of the copper to insulate it. It is often green in appearance and prevents contact with other conductive metals and protects the circuits from oxidation. A silkscreen is printed onto the board to label information about it, such as parts and logos. This is the white writing seen on a finished board. Colors used for the silkscreen may vary from the traditional white, but it is rare for multiple colors to be used at the same for the sake of uniformity. The board is covered in a surface finish and fabricated.
This is how PCBs are generally made. Just remember that each manufacturing company has its own method and process of producing PCBs. By visiting pcbnet.com, you can observe our own methods and read up the many informative articles provide. pcbnet.com is only one of the many companies out there that is part of the ever-evolving PCB market. We are all constantly trying to improve methods to create faster and more efficient ways to produce printed circuit boards.
Choosing the right place to buy your components is just as important as choosing the right place to manufacture your board. If you are looking for top quality boards, we offer them here at pcbnet.com.
24 Aug 2016