Circuit Board Production

Written by Adam Blau
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Circuit board production is a particularly involved, many-tiered process, particularly if the finished product is to be sturdy, uniform, and clean. Amateur circuit board production often suffers from production flaws, including erroneous connectivity (equivalent to a solder bridge) and impure or dirty soldering surfaces. Dedicated circuit board manufacturers use machines to create complex circuit boards while keeping these issues to a minimum.

The Steps of Circuit Board Production

Once the design stage is complete, it is necessary to create the actual board. First, holes are drilled in a conductive board (often copper) at the appropriate locations to accommodate electronic components. In some cases, the holes may be further lined at this stage with a conductive deposit.

At this point, it is necessary to apply the actual design to the board. Some companies will use a photosensitive film representation of the design to get it onto the board. Once the design is placed on the board, it will be protected from the subsequent procedure, which will render the non-design sections of the board non-conductive. This is often done by coating the design areas with a chemically resistant substance.

The non-essential portion of the board is then stripped away or coated with a non-conductive substance, allowing the circuit to remain the only conductive portion. In some cases, solder is then applied to the various solder pads, allowing a user to effectively solder electronics component onto the proper locations. Any good circuit board manufacturer will also allow for a labeling system, so the user will know exactly where the components should be placed.

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