Fabrication of printed circuit board (PCB) is the assembly of a circuit board used in an electronic device according to the circuit board design. The manufacturers put together the layers of the board with the specific surface pattern that they can use in electronic manufacturing. PCB manufacturers either fabricate circuit boards by themselves or do it by third party contract manufacturing. Producing high-quality PCB is much dependent on doing perfect PCB fabrication assembly.
PCB Fabrication in Manufacturing
Before going directly to the PCB fabrication, we should know the relationships of PCB fabrication and other stages in PCB manufacturing. The PCB making consists of mainly three steps: PCB developing, PCB manufacturing, and PCB testing. In PCB developing, technical persons design the PCB according to requirements. This process is an iteration of the target to provide the highest quality design within the allotted time for development.
In PCB manufacturing, manufacturers do the construction of the designed circuit board. This process consists of 2 steps: PCB fabrication assembling and PCB assembling. So, PCB fabrication is a part of the PCB manufacturing process which takes place before PCB assembly, which is the later part of manufacturing. PCB testing is the third step of PCB making. Testing persons test the PCBs to check the circuit board’s ability to perform the instructed operational functionalities. In this stage, testing persons identify errors and faults and take steps according to defects.
Techniques Involving PCB Fabrication Assembling
According to the specifications of the design package, PCB fabrication transforms the design of a circuit board into a physical structure. PCB fabrication assembling involves some techniques. Technical persons make a planned layout on laminates of copper clad. They have to etch or remove extra copper from inside layers for revealing pads and traces. They apply heat and press the board materials at high temperatures to create a PCB layer stack up. Using hole-pins, they drill holes for mounting electronic components. They have to further etch and remove extra copper from the surface layers if required. Then they need to plate pinholes and add coating for protection to surface or solder masking. They also print references, logos, polarity indicators, and other markings on the board surface. After fabrication, there may be issues like yield rate, reliability, etc. Manufacturers also have to handle such matters.
PCB fabrication assembly is a significant part of the PCB manufacturing process. It’s a sensitive and challenging project; that’s why many companies don’t do PCB fabrication by themselves. PCB quality depends significantly on efficient PCB fabrication.