An Overview of PCB Fabrication

The domination of different electronic gadgets and devices has been going on for many years now. It has been aiding the lives of people for such a long time that most have been used to their presence. It helps in almost all aspects of human life.

Circute bordElectronics have come a long way in order to come to its present state; from the predecessors of the modern devices to the latest models of technological advancements. Even one of the most essential part of an electronic device has a history taking a long way back. It is a safe conclusion that the printed circuit board or PCB is one of the most important part of a device. It serves as a foundation of the primary components such as resistors, diodes, capacitors, and transistors. It also allows the components to connect with each other to form a circuit without the aid of wires. With PCBs, the only things that are needed are the electronic pieces and the conductor surface. The process of making a fully functioning electronic device is called PCB fabrication.

But how was PCB fabrication invented?

PCBs are the developed versions of the early electrical connections systems. These prototypes of PCBs first emerged into the electronics scene during the 1850s. No boards were used during this time. Strips of metals that are formed as rods are the wires and conductors of that time. They are connected to larger versions of electrical components (diodes, capacitors, transistors, and resistors) and the foundations on which the connections are mounted are wooden bases.

As time went by, these metal rods are replaced by metal wires that closely resemble the wires of today. Instead of wooden bases, the connections are held within a metal boxes or chasses. Plastic boxes are also used during that time.

However, these types of connection foundations became too bulky for the still developing electronics society. As more and more technological advancements were developed, the need for a less bulky and portable bases arose. This need gave way to the birth of PCB fabrication. The earliest types of PCBs are called “printed wiring” or “”printed circuit” by the inventor Charles Ducas. From this the era of PCB based electronics began.

The passing of time allowed the further innovation of the PCB.

The through-hole technology and the surface-mount technology became very prominent during the 1980s and the 1990s, respectively. Chips also became viable components for PCBs and it has been in use up to now. The outcomes of these advancements are the extremely mobile devices that the people of the present time use. There are now laptops that have the size of a medium notebook. Mobile phones and tablets have the capacity of a small net book, all thanks to the development of PCBs.

PCB fabrication is a process of elaborately planned schematic diagrams that allows circuits to work in an engineered way. It is a very delicate practice because a single mistake may result to the detriment of the device, and most unfortunately, of the user. The most skilled electronics and EC engineers are the ones who have their expertise focused on PCBs and other electronic components.

The designs have to be uniquely made.

A particular model of a device has a different design than its other versions. This is because the components are connected through pathways (drawn in schematic diagrams) that make a circuit possible. The diagrams vary according to the necessary components.

Components also need to be very delicately mounted and soldered on the printed circuit board. Even a small amount of excess lead may cause the connection to short circuit.