The Superconductive Circuit Board

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    Measuring and Calculating the Resistance of Aluminum PCB Traces

    Measuring resistance of a fine-line aluminum trace provides different challenges compared to traces on a copper PCB, most importantly, the surface aluminum oxide is tenacious and it can be difficult to get through to arrive at an accurate and repeatable measurement.

    Aluminum Trace Printed Circuit Board Innovation

    The journey to develop a circuit board which features aluminum circuitry (Aluminum PCBs ) has been challenging.

    Beginning in 2008, Omni Circuit boards was challenged by a strategic partner with developing a circuit board with fine-line aluminum traces. The reason for aluminum in the initial quest was for its superconducting (cryogenic) properties. But as time went by, we began to appreciate how developing this capability could also benefit customers who have a requirement for aluminum wire bonding of critical components.

    Development of Low Temperature PCBs

    Mid 2011 was the beginning of the collaboration between Omni Circuit Boards and D-Wave Systems to produce superconducting, low temperature printed circuit boards (PCBs)

     Development was driven by D-Wave’s need for low temperature PCBs which could provide mono-metal superconductive connection to their unique processors.

    The PCBs would operate at low-temperature, be solderable and be suitable for wire-bonding. The PCB would also withstand multiple temperature cycling from below 500 Millikelvin to 20°C.

    Understanding PCB Manufacturing: Avoiding File Errors

    At Omni not all PCB files we receive are from seasoned PCB design professionals.

    Designs also come to us from enterprising individuals who can credit their body of knowledge to the results of internet searches. The inspiration for this article came from one such individual.

    UBC and Omni awarded Engage Grant by NSERC

    Vancouver, BC, January 7, 2015 University of British Columbia Department of Materials Engineering and Omni Circuit Boards have been awarded an Engage Grant (EG) through the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

    Omni Circuit Boards signs R&D agreement with D-Wave Systems.

    Vancouver, BC, January 13, 2015—Omni Circuit Boards Ltd. announced today the signing of a research and development agreement with D-Wave Systems Inc., the first commercial quantum computing company, in support of the further advancement of aluminum trace printed circuit boards (Al-PCB) for quantum computing applications.

    Understanding PCB Manufacturing: Panelization

    The purpose of panelization is to secure PCB boards during manufacturing, shipping and assembly processes while making their separation as painless as possible.

    A "PCB Shop Fabrication Panel" is not the same as a Customer PCB Panel, yet both are known as "Panels" in their respective industries.

    The "PCB Shop Fabrication Panel", is the panel that a PCB manufacturer like OMNI uses to fabricate your boards and panels, it usually contains several "customer panels" or single pcbs.

    A "Customer PCB Panel", or simply a "PCB Panel" is the panel that is utilized for assembly, meaning, populating a board with SMD or PTH components, this is the panel you as customer receive.

    Panelization can be as simple as a rectangular board tab routed with a 100mil (0.100”) space between PCB boards and a 500mil (0.50”) border on four edges. Or, it can be as complex as a panel filled with combination of Jump V-score or routed rounded polygons. 

    Understanding PCB Manufacturing: Working with Duroid laminates

    If you have ever driven in the winter and suddenly lost control for no reason, you probably experienced black ice.

    Understanding PCB Manufacturing: Odd Layer PCB Boards

    Our cookbook of PCB recipes includes an assortment of odd layer PCBs.

    About 8% of PCB boards we are asked to produce are comprised of an odd number of layers. But unless you have a specific requirement, it is usually best to design a multilayer board with an even number of layers. Reducing an even layered board by one layer may seem like a cost-saving move, but from a PCB perspective it is not. It may actually increase the cost as well as lead-time and leave you with a warped PCB board which may not meet your expectations. Let's look at the issues in detail.

    What You Should Know About Immersion White Tin PCB Manufacturing

    If you work with printed circuit boards or the PCBA industry, then you have probably heard of immersion white tin, but may have questions about how it actually works and whether it's a process that you should care about.

    Given that we are leaders in immersion white tin PCB fabrication here at Omni, it goes without saying that we are heavily in favor of its use. To understand why, you first have to understand the reason behind our preference for white tin in the first place. Traditionally, circuit boards have been finished with a coating of material, usually containing lead, as part of the soldering process. That's great for the functionality of printed circuit boards, but less friendly for the environment since these metals (and the byproducts created) can be extremely toxic.