EMC ANALYSIS Adding Automated EMC Analysis to PCB Layout There is a perception that EMC analysis during layout can be a time-consuming task that is challenging to set up and properly configure, with difficult-to-interpret results. But conducting EMC analysis at appropriate points prior to fabrication can mitigate the need for redesigns. by Craig Armenti
PLATING Black Pad Revisited Black pad is often the root cause of solderability issues. How do you differentiate it from other soldering defects? And why should you care? by Martine Simard-Normandin and Christina Banks
DfM Guidelines for Improving PCB Design Manufacturability Running PCB assembly lines without operators for an extended period of time is the holy grail of manufacturing. A look at the state-of-the-art technologies to put that goal within a robot’s reach. by Ranko Vujosevic, Ph.D.
NTI-100 Automotive Driving Fabricator Gains For fabricators whose major customers were Apple and Samsung, growth was hard to come by in 2016. But suppliers to the auto sector were revving up. by Dr. Hayao Nakahara
Altium Expands Its Reach An interview with Ben Jordan on Altium's perspective on future changes in engineering and CAD requirements. by Mike Buetow
SALARY SURVEY Among Designers, Compensation, Job Satisfaction on the Rise If PCD&F’s latest data are any indication, more than half of today’s PCB designers plan to work in the field for no more than the next 10 years. The good news: Salaries are at their highest point yet – and so is job satisfaction. by Chelsey Drysdale
3D PRINTING Improving PCB Design Methods to Complement 3D Printer Technology 3D printers are revolutionizing prototyping and disrupting age-old design methods. A new generation of EDA solutions supports 3D printing by providing unique design rules to support the specific conductive materials used and optimizing the data. by Humair Mandavia
PARTS PLANNING Optimizing Component Selection by Connecting the Designer to the Supply Chain A new generation of connected design platforms, called engineering data management (EDM) systems, addresses issues of extended product development cycles by continually synchronizing supply-chain information with PCB design libraries, and alerting engineers to changes and conflicts. by Bob Potock
DfX PCB Designers Hold Smart Factories Ransom Many companies have ended up “just living with” multiple, repeated PCB fabrication and assembly issues for years, regarding them as a given. If smart factories are to work, however, this has to change. Here’s how.. by Michael Ford
ADDITIVE PROCESSING Savings and Efficiencies with Printed Silver Flexible Circuits Historically, a designer’s only recourse as electronics packaging became denser was to incorporate flexible PCBs to route traces around 3D structures. Innovations in printing and component attach are seeing light, flexible printed silver circuitry in high-density applications where more costly traditional etched copper circuits were once exclusive. by Greg Kuchuris
DfM Managing Rule Checks The DfM validation challenge has increased over the past decade, thanks to the proliferation of new technologies such as flex boards, rigid-flex, chip-on-board, embedded components, and others. A new generation of design for manufacturing tools makes it possible to validate the design against design rules of all technologies and manufacturers that will be involved with the product in the early stages of the product development process. by Humair Mandavia
SIMULATION Algorithm for Constructing the Transient Process in a Meander Delay Line in PCBs A graphic-analytical method for simulation of the transient process, as described by the authors, allows users to identify the basic mechanisms of pulse distortion in a meander delay line, and obtain the analytical dependencies for calculation of the efficient delay of signals at any predetermined level of receiver. by S.A. Sorokin, Ph.D. and S.M. Chudinov, Ph.D.
EMS TOP 50 Automotive and Automation In a year of stalled outsourcing – even mighty Foxconn took a step back – two sectors continued to drive EMS forward. Who were 2016’s individual winners and losers? by Mike Buetow