The Superconductive Circuit Board

    How to Avoid Printed Circuit Board Delays in Manufacturing

    CAM (computer-aided manufacturing) is the art of translating a PCB board designer’s creative CAD (computer-aided design) output into information required in the manufacturing processes required to fabricate that same PCB.

    Our processes require your computer generated files to be converted into photo-tooling films and drill and router files which will allow us, the printed circuit board manufacturing facility, to produce a custom PCB to your specifications.

    Omni's Printed Circuit Boards on the cover of Time magazine

    So how would you respond to appearing on the cover of Time magazine?

    PHOTOGRAPH BY GREGG SEGAL FOR TIME

    Understanding Printed Circuit Board Manufacturing: Impedance Control

    Printed circuit boards with impedance requirements demand a high level of precision.

    Image courtesy of Zmetrix

    For standard circuit boards, a PCB manufacturer is given a set of patterns - copper patterns, hole patterns, ink patterns, which are combined into a single circuit board with all the pattern sizes and positions within certain tolerances. Failure to meet a certain size or position with the specified tolerance can be cause for the circuit board to be rejected. If a trace has been defined as an impedance control trace, it is not the trace size which is strictly defined, but rather the impedance. While a nominal trace size will be provided in the Gerber layer, it is understood the circuit board manufacturer can vary trace width, height, and dielectric thickness as long as the final impedance is within tolerance.

    Understanding Printed Circuit Board Manufacturing: Hard Gold Plating

    Plating Hard Gold onto printed circuit boards is typically done to provide contact points and PCB edge connectors.

    Gold contact surfaces are often used on circuit boards with membrane switches which are a technology of choice for industrial, commercial and consumer products. When PCBs will be repeatedly installed and removed, electroplated gold is used for edge-connector contacts or as they are more commonly known: Gold fingers. The plating thickness of a PCB gold finger is typically a mere 300 micro-inch. At this thickness the hard gold is expected to survive 1,000 cycles before wear through.

    Developments in Aluminum Trace (very low temperature) Printed Circuit Boards

    As you might expect, no two applications for aluminum trace circuit boards are the same and most often they are not even similar.

    While some customers are investigating frontiers in MEMS (Microelectromechanical systems), others are delving into the inherent superconductive properties at milliKelvin temperatures, while still others are exploiting the radiation response characteristics of aluminum. For the R&D personnel at Omni Circuit Boards, the requests have presented some interesting challenges.

    How Copper Weight Impacts Printed Circuit Board Manufacturing

    One of the critical steps when ordering a printed circuit board is specifying the copper weight.

    The default, should you choose not to specify a weight, is 1.2 oz of copper. This is because customers routinely specify a minimum 1 oz copper thickness and 1 mil of copper in plated through holes. To achieve this, we routinely plate up .5 oz base material with .7 oz of additional copper which provides the requested thickness in the hole. Often our PCB board quotes will reflect this specifying .5 + .7 oz Cu/sq ft where the .5 is the base copper and the 0.7 is the plated copper.

    Understanding Printed Circuit Board Manufacturing: Silk-Screening

    One of the more artistic processes in a PCB manufacturing facility is the application of Silkscreen known in the old days as Ident layers.

    Silkscreen is usually white and human readable letters, normally used to identify components, test points, PCB and PCBA part numbers, warning symbols, company logos, date codes and manufacturer marks.

    Silk-screening requires specially formulated inks. The standard colour is white, but you can also select red, blue, black, yellow, etc.

    Custom Printed Circuit Board shapes

    In business as in life, we learn more from listening than talking.

    Why Omni Circuit Boards Ltd was the First Printed Circuit Board Manufacturer to Produce an Aluminum Trace PCB (very low temperature, superconductive, cryogenic)

    Today's computing technology is rapidly outpacing the capabilities of standard, mass-produced printed circuit boards. That's why it was no surprise when the engineers at British Columbia based D-Wave Systems came to us looking for a unique product.

    How to Get a Low Cost Printed Circuit Board Quote

    We would like to offer you step by step instructions on how to get a PCB Quote.