One of the most common parts of an electronic device that are not usually seen is the printed circuit board assembly (also known as the PCB assembly). This is used to connect the device’s different electronic components without the need for several wires.
The electronic components are attached to a circuit board which is made of a semi-conductor material and has an electronic circuit engraved onto it. The electronic patterns of the circuit boards are made so that the electronic components these need will only connect and function when put in the right place. Printed circuit boards are also called as printed wiring cards or printed wiring boards.
There are many parts composing a PCB assembly.
Once all these parts are assembled together, they would look like a single solid unit.In order to make a printed circuit board, choosing the right materials is the initial step. The materials that will be used should be a semi-conductor or materials that are completely insulated against electricity. One of the most common materials used for printed circuit boards is fibre glass. Fibre glass is inexpensive to produce plus it is durable yet light in weight.
There are also some designers who are using different computer aided design (CAD) programs in order to produce different patterns for the printed circuit boards. These designs will be engraved or etched onto the PCB assembly.
The computer aided design program used will aid the designer in getting a preview of the product first so the electronic circuits to be printed directly onto the board will not overlap with other electronic components. The holes needed on the circuit board will be punctured as well. This method is very helpful especially if the design to be made is a multilayer circuit board.
Copper is the usual material used as a conductor for most PCB assembly. During the time when the circuit board is still developing, manufacturers and designers pasted a copper foil at the bottom part of the circuit board in order to create a path for the circuit. For the modern printed circuit boards, the copper is etched directly on the board so that it will not fade or be disrupted when used.
There are a lot of ways to install electronic components into a printed circuit board. If the component is circular in shape and can fit into holes, it can be readily set into the circuit board through the plated holes. After the electronic component is set, it will be screwed or riveted to secure it in place. Soldering the electronic component is also used to provide a better contact between the electronic component and the circuit board. To ensure that the electronic component will be installed in place, the plated holes also have a copper ring around it.
There are also different ways on how to connect or place an electronic component into the printed circuit board. Through the use of the “Through Mount Technology”, the most common means of adding an electronic component into a circuit board, the holes are drilled directly into the circuit board and are marked with a copper ring (also known as annular ring).
The component will be placed into the hole and will be soldered to secure in place.The “Surface Mount Technology”, on the other hand, is used when the electronic component is stamped directly on the printed circuit board. This is commonly used for smaller electronic components such as the resistor. There is also no need to solder the electronic component in place anymore.
Due to the production of the printed circuit boards, it makes the production of the electronic devices cost-efficient, faster and easily accessible. It also allows manufacturers and engineers to create more useful and compact electronic devices that will make the lives of people easier.