Printed Circuit Board Assembly

The term printed circuit board assembly refers to the process of connecting numerous electronic units to a printed circuit board in order to develop a working printed circuit assembly. Printed circuit board assembly is of great relevance because these units can upgrade any electronic device or gadget without any inconvenience. It enhances the utility and the efficiency of the device or gadget it is used in. There are two methods to assemble the printed circuit board, one is surface-mount construction and the other one is through-hole construction.

Under the through-hole construction method, the leads of the components are pushed through holes in the printed circuit board and soldered to pads on the other side. This technique is a rather old technique when compared to the surface-mount construction technique. Though it provides stronger mechanical bonds as compared to other techniques but the drilling involved in this process makes the production of the boards expensive.

The surface-mount construction technique attaches the components directly to the surface of the printed circuit board. It does not involve extensive drilling as these components have very small leads or no leads at all. They use small pins, a matrix of solder balls or flat contacts instead of leads. This is a new technique as compared to the through-hole construction. These components are small yet they can have a lot more connections. Also, they allow connections on both the sides of the board. A faster and simpler printed circuit board assembly is possible by using this technique. Moreover, this technique is cheaper than its older counterpart. However, this technique is much more complex and through-hole construction is preferred when extra strength is required in the connection.

The printed circuit board is assembled in a certain process. The steps involved in manufacturing printed circuit board assembly are:

1) Solder paste printing: Here solder paste is printed on the board using a stencil. This acts as a binding material of the devices on the board.

2) Placing: In this step, the chips are individually picked and placed in their designated place on the board.

3) Reflow: After the chips are placed on the solder paste, they are passed through an oven so that the solder can melt and bind the chips on the board.

4) Conformal coating: A layer of lacquer coating is provided for increased protection.

5) Checking for errors: To confirm that no errors have crept in during the assembly process, techniques like automatic optical inspection and automated x-ray inspection are used.

6) Correcting the errors: If any mistakes are found in the assembly then it is reworked.

We live in a world where electronic devices and gadgets have replaced most of the things that were used in the older days. The printed circuit board connects electrical elements with the device. Hence, printed circuit board assembly is the most important part of the electronic world as they increase the efficiency and the utility of the device to a great extent. These boards are found even in the smallest of the gadgets that we use, for example, these are found on our mobile phones or iPods too. It helps to increase the efficiency of the product as well as to derive cost benefits from the production process.

About The Company

BESTProto is a group of professional soldering technicians, SMT (surface mount technology) process engineers and business people who are committed to rapidly building electromechanical and PCB prototypes while providing small highly specialized businesses, start-ups and incubator companies with small production or specialty build capabilities.

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