Printed circuit boards are of great importance in the electronics world. Also, our everyday devices feature PCBs. Most people don’t understand the technology behind the devices they use. Therefore, it is important to understand the basics of a PCB.
A main PCB is the core of an electronic. It plays a crucial role in the performance of electronic devices. Also, the main PCB is the circuit board in which electrical components are mounted on. In this article, we will explain more on main PCBs and what function it offers.
What is a Main PCB?
A main PCB is a flat board that provides mechanical support to electronic components. Also, this board uses conductive pads to accept the terminals of the component. A main PCB uses planes and traces to electrically connect the component’s terminals.
There are two major functions of the main PCB. The first is to attach electronic components in specific locations on the outer layers. Secondly, it offers electrical connections between the terminals of a component. Also, the main PCB serves as the platform in which electronic components are carefully installed.
The main PCB is the building block of most electronic devices. Also, this PCB can be single-sided, double-sided, or multilayer. The main PCB is a flat sheet of insulating material that features a copper foil layer laminated to the substrate. Also, this board holds electronic circuits together. The main PCB features electroplate copper conductors. These conductors go through holes known as vias.
Furthermore, a main PCB can feature multiple layers of copper. The board complexity depends on the number of layers and the interconnection between them. Multilayer main PCB offers better signal integrity and more routing options. However, this main PCB can be very costly to manufacture. Also, it is time consuming.
The two-layer PCB is very easy to manufacture. This is because it features copper on the two sides. However, multilayer boards join additional internal copper layers. The four layer main PCB features more routing options compared to the two layer board.
Components of a Main PCB
The main PCB features some electronic components. Also, these components are crucial to the performance of a device. The components of a main PCB include resistors, capacitors, and more. Each of the components on a main PCB has its own function. Some of the components on a main PCB include:
A capacitor holds electrical charge within the main PCB and discharges it. This component collects opposite charges on two different conductive layers.
A resistor is a crucial component in the main PCB. This component enables the transmission of electric current. Therefore, it generates a voltage and discharges electric power as heat. Resistors are available in different materials. Also, these components are color coded to indicate their resistance value.
The sensor plays a crucial role in a main PCB. This component indicates the changes in the environmental conditions. Therefore, it produces an electrical signal in response to the change it detected. This signal is then sent to other electronic components on the main PCB.
Diode is a component that enables the flow of electric current in one direction. Diodes can block the flow of current in the wrong direction. The light emitting diode (LED) is the most common diode.
This is similar to a capacitor. An inductor stores energy in a magnetic field whenever current flows via them. Also, this component can block signals within the main PCB. It can block the interference from another piece of equipment.
The transistor serves as an amplifier that controls electronic signals in a PCB. Also, there are various types of transistors. However, the bipolar transistor is the most common type. This transistor features the collector, emitter, and the base.
Materials Used for Main PCBs
The common materials used for the manufacturing of the main PCB include substrates, copper, and solder mask.
The main PCB can feature flexible or rigid base materials. This depends on the PCB application. Also, rigid main PCBs use polyimide or FR4. However, flexible main PCBs utilize high-temperature polyimide films.
The copper layer is the copper coating or copper foil on one side or two sides of the PCB. The purpose of the copper layer is to offer electrical signals between the components on the board.
The soldermask is another primary material used for main PCBs. This material protects the PCB. Therefore it functions as a PCB skin. The solder mask is a protective material made of polymer.
This material is also referred to as nomenclature. It is usually laminated on the component side of a main PCB. Also, the silkscreen layer helps to represent logos, settings, and symbol switches.
Main PCB Fabrication Process
The fabrication process of the main PCB involves several steps. The PCB manufacturer must carry out these steps carefully.
- Develop the image of the circuit through photo tooling or direct imaging.
- Remove too much copper from inner layers. This helps to reveal pads and traces.
- Develop the PCB layer stackup by laminating PCB material with pressure and heat. Prepreg is necessary in this step as it facilitates the bonding process.
- Drill holes to mount holes through vias and hole pins. The holes help to enhance the placement of components via PTH technology.
- Apply a solder mask. Soldermask uses ultraviolet light. Also, apply the soldermask to the entire surface of the board for soldering metal pads.
- Add surface finish to the board. There are various surface finish options for your PCB. Ensure you use the appropriate surface finish for your board.
- Inspect and test the board for any defects or errors. This stage is critical as it ensures the functionality of your main PCB.
The main PCB is a core component of an electronic device. Without this PCB, an electronic device can’t function. Therefore, this PCB is of great importance in electronics production. Also, the main PCB is widely used in different applications and industries. This PCB offers mechanical support and electrical connection to electronic devices.