PCB Topics

January 16, 2012

Mechanical CAD integration

MCAD integration provides the means for designers to test the mechanical compatibility of a PCB design – for cooling performance as well as whether the layout will fit into an enclosure without problems.
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September 10, 2010

Designing a PCB for power integrity

Signal integrity (SI) issues have been around for a while, the result of ever-faster edge rates. Both SI and PI problems manifest themselves as data errors. Indeed, PI problems are often misdiagnosed as SI problems. As such, an understanding of power delivery issues is essential to the success of any board project, as is a [...]
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May 1, 2009

Make simulation your friend

You must find, fix and design out signal integrity problems before committing to hardware. Simulation is the key.
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May 1, 2009

Make simulation your friend

The earlier in a design cycle a decision can be made, the shorter the development time and the lower the development cost. This is probably the most important product development principle, and is especially true when interconnects are not transparent and signal or power integrity could be holding back performance. You must find, fix and […]

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March 1, 2009

Automating sawtooth tuning for differential pairs

Length matching within a differential pair can be one of the more tedious tasks facing a PCB designer. This article describes how a team at communications and consumer electronics semiconductor company Broadcom overcame this by using the automation options available within their design tools. While the article describes automation tailored to a specific task, the […]

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November 1, 2008

Bridging the ECAD-MCAD gap

New tools and standards encourage communication between the electrical and mechanical domains, says Pawel Chadzynski. Most major electronics companies have separate electrical (ECAD) and mechanical (MCAD) design organizations. Efficient collaboration between these teams throughout the PCB design process can significantly reduce cycle times, lower the risk of re-spins, and improve quality. The first challenge to […]

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November 1, 2008

Change you’d better believe in

This special edition of EDA Tech Forum Journal concentrates on PCB design. It’s an exciting area technologically right now, and we hope that the editorial content reflects that. One theme that kept emerging was that many of the contributors believe their discipline is at some sort of tipping point. And these changes don’t just come […]

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November 1, 2008

Defying the downturn

Emerging technologies and markets could spur PCB tool growth despite economic concerns, says Mary Ann Olsson The worldwide PCB EDA software market maintained fairly stable 3.4% growth in 2007. Sales reached $532.5M, from $514.7M in 2006. The projected growth rate for PCB software in 2008 is 2.3%, bringing sales to $544.7M (Figure 1). One key […]

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November 1, 2008

Inside the hot zone

Floorplanning informed by thermal analysis can significantly improve PCB layouts, writes Robin Bornoff The number of PCB design constraints seems ever increasing. The risk that a design will fail either functional performance or reliability goals grows for each generation. One increasingly popular trade-off addresses a balance between thermal compliance and signal integrity. Components with high […]

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November 1, 2008

Learning the value of preparation and simulation by OSMOSIS

OSMOSIS is a super-fast optical switch developed through the Advanced Simulation and Computing program. The article describes the strategies adopted by the IBM team charged with designing the Central Scheduler board for the project. The design was of a far greater complexity than the team had previously encountered, and as a result, developed new pre-preparation […]

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