Certified Printed Circuit Designer Training

The printed circuit design industry’s choice for comprehensive training and certification. This 40-hour live curriculum was developed by leading experts and includes a 400-page handbook containing information on everything from parts libraries to high-speed design.

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September 16-20

Printed Circuit Engineering Association™

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PCB West

PCB West 2024 Keynoter Charles Pfeil to Offer Path for Implementing AI in Electronic Design

PEACHTREE CITY, GA – JULY 19, 2024 – The Printed Circuit Engineering Association (PCEA) today announced electronics design software architect Charles Pfeil will keynote the PCB West conference and exhibition in October. 

Pfeil’s talk, “AI Roadmap for PCB Layout,” illustrates the capabilities and methodologies that will be needed for AI success with complex PCB designs, with a focus on constraints, place and route. Success, he says, lies in balancing the growing capabilities of AI with the preservation of proprietary design knowledge and methodologies. His talk will take place October 9 at 11 a.m. at the Santa Clara (CA) Convention Center.

“AI functionality for effective place and route of simple designs is currently available; however, using AI for place and route of complex designs is still in the first stages. But the ultimate goal of AI-driven PCB design tools is to replicate and potentially surpass the capabilities of experienced human designers, particularly for complex designs,” Pfeil notes.

“Communicating PCB design expertise and decisions to an AI program involves several steps, including knowledge extraction, representation, and the development of an appropriate system to leverage this knowledge. But significant challenges remain, particularly in capturing and applying the nuanced expertise of experienced designers and the unique methodologies of different companies.”

Over his 50-year career in the PCB industry, Pfeil has been a designer, owner of a service bureau, and had engineering management and product definition roles at Racal-Redac, ASI, Cadence, PADS, VeriBest, Mentor Graphics, and Altium. Most of his career was at Mentor Graphics, where he was a software architect focused on the advanced development of PCB design tools. He was the original product architect of Expedition PCB, and an inventor of Team PCB, XtremePCB, XtremeAR, and the Sketch Router. He is also the author of BGA Breakouts and Routing and High-Speed Constraint Values and PCB Layout Methods.

“Charles Pfeil is synonymous with electronics design automation,” said Mike Buetow, president of PCEA and conference chairman, PCB West 2024. “He has guided the development of two platforms in wide use today, and his presentation focuses on both the fundamental issues that are obstacles to AI implementation for complex designs, and the viable paths forward. Those interested in knowing how AI might change their jobs in a positive manner should not miss this keynote address.”

PCB West is the leading technical conference and exhibition in North America for electronics design, fabrication, assembly, and test engineers. It will take place October 8 – 11, 2024, at the Santa Clara (CA) Convention Center. The event includes a one-day exhibition on October 9.

PRINTED CIRCUIT DESIGN & FAB and CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY magazines are media partners for the event. 


PCEA Announces New Susy Webb Webinar on PCB Design Techniques

PEACHTREE CITY, GA – JULY 16, 2024 – Susy Webb will present a new all-day webinar titled “Effective PCB Design Techniques” on September 10, sponsored by the Printed Circuit Engineering Association (PCEA).

Webb, a senior designer with 40 years of experience across a variety of industry sectors, will share ideas for setup, planning, and procedures that lead to efficient board design.

The all-day online class will take place from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST, with a one-hour break from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. EST.

Years ago, someone new to designing printed circuit boards would have had access to other designers who worked with them in the same office, or what we often call ‘mentors,’ “ says Webb. “Today’s lack of dedicated designers, coupled with the trend toward electrical engineers designing their own boards – some quite infrequently – has created a gap in understanding of the entire design processes. This includes a lack of knowledge of the reasons why certain things need to be done, and how to implement those ideas within each new PCB design.”

This class was designed to discuss many of the tasks that are needed to create an effective PCB, including choosing quality parts, finding the rise time of signals, understanding where the energy flows within a PCB, deciding the orientation of parts, setting up routing and fanout grids, and the routing layers to use for different signals and busses. Also discussed will be procedures that seasoned designers use to make their design work efficient.

For more details: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4213104697774443360.

PCB East

PCB East Announces Call for Abstracts for PCB East 2025

PEACHTREE CITY, GA – JUNE 20, 2024 – Abstracts for next year’s PCB East technical conference are due September 6, 2024, the Printed Circuit Engineering Association (PCEA) said today. The conference, the largest of its kind in New England, takes place next spring in the Boston suburbs, and focuses on training and best practices for printed circuit board design engineers, electronics design engineers, fabricators and assemblers.

The four-day technical conference will take place April 29 – May 2, 2025, in Boxborough, MA. The event includes a one-day exhibition on April 30.

Papers and presentations of the following durations are sought for the technical conference: one-hour lectures and presentations; two-hour workshops; and half-day (3.5-hour) and full-day seminars. 

Preference is given to presentations of two hours in length or more, and no presentations of less than one hour will be considered.

Abstracts of 100-500 words and speaker biographies should be submitted to PCEA. Papers and presentations must be noncommercial in nature and should focus on technology, techniques or methodologies related to printed circuit board design, fabrication, assembly, test, components or packaging, and additive manufacturing. 

Submit abstracts at https://pcbeast.com/abstract-submission-guidelines/ by September 6, 2024. No emailed abstracts will be accepted. Submitters will be notified in mid-November if their abstract has been accepted. Presentations are due April 11, 2025.

Speaker Benefits: Presenters of accepted abstract(s) for the 2025 program receive the following event benefits.

  • Complimentary access to the online proceedings
  • Complimentary pass to the technical conference

For more information about PCB East, visit pcbeast.com or contact Conference Director Mike Buetow at 617-327-4702; mike@pcea.net

PCB East

PCB East 2024 Registration Up 18% Year-Over-Year

PEACHTREE CITY, GA – JUNE 19, 2024 – Registration for the PCB East 2024 conference and exhibits rose 18% overall year-over-year, the Printed Circuit Engineering Association announced today. Conference registration was up 12% from last year, while the expo-only trade show registration rose 9% over the same period.

The annual conference was held June 4-7 at the Boxboro Regency Hotel and Conference Center in Boxborough, MA. In all, more than 65 leading suppliers of electronics design tools, manufacturers of bare boards and assemblies, suppliers of fabrication and assembly equipment and materials, and related industry companies exhibited at the show.

“PCB East continued its growth this year as the region becomes more aware of the opportunities for education and networking,” said Mike Buetow, conference director and president, PCEA. “Our post-show surveys indicate 100% of respondents would either likely or definitely recommend the conference to a colleague.” 

“Attendees represented 35 states and 42 countries,” Buetow added, “a recognition of the timeliness and scope of the event.”  

“Another great show at PCB East!” said Lauren Waslick, director of PCB design, Newgrange Design. “I gave my first professional talk and met a lot of great people. Thanks to the Printed Circuit Engineering Association for putting on a great event!”

“It’s always great to sync up with my dear friends, as well as many industry colleagues old and new at PCB East!” said Stephen Chavez, senior product marketing manager, Siemens Digital Industries and chairman of PCEA. “A big shout out to the entire PCEA staff for putting on another great industry event! I can’t wait to attend PCB West later this year! I hope to see you there!”

PCB East 2025 will be held at the Boxboro Regency Hotel and Conference Center in Boxborough, MA, April 29 to May 2 with a one day exhibition on April 30.

PCB West

PCB West 2024 Opens Technical Conference Registration

PEACHTREE CITY, GA – MAY 28, 2024 – The Printed Circuit Engineering Association (PCEA) today announced registration is open for the technical program for PCB West 2024, featuring more than 110 hours of in-depth electronics engineering training spread over nearly 50 sessions. 

Among the industry experts scheduled to speak this year are Lee Ritchey, Susy Webb, Zachariah Peterson, Tomas Chester, John Watson and Charlene McCauley. The conference will be held October 8 to 11 at the Santa Clara (CA) Convention Center and features classes for every level of experience, from novice to expert. 

The scope of classes ranges from designing all types of printed circuit boards to complex signal and power integrity and power delivery systems design. Foundational topics such as circuit grounding and PCB stackups are interspersed with advanced tutorials on DDR5, thermal management, analog measurements, system mechanical design, and more. 

New courses this year include the role of AI in PCB design, PCB cost drivers, designing with embedded inductors, HDI and sub-lamination structures, new low-cost and sustainable PCB material performance and reliability, and avoiding PCB respins, among others.

PCB West will also see the return of the popular Ask the Experts help session, featuring recognized authorities in design for manufacturing, EMI/EMC, signal integrity, flex circuits and more. 

“Whether you are after training on printed circuit board design and manufacturing, or building your network, PCB West is hands-down the best place to go,” said Mike Buetow, conference director, PCB West. “It offers more than 110 hours of in-depth training from the industry’s most-recognized experts, all in one place and for a fraction of the cost.” 

Conference registrants who sign up by September 7 can take advantage of the Early Bird Special discounts for the conference. 

An exhibition featuring more than 100 leading suppliers to the electronics design and manufacturing industry will be held October 9. 

PRINTED CIRCUIT DESIGN & FAB and CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY magazines are media partners for the event. 

Read the latest issues of PCD&F/CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY!

Collaborate, Educate, and Inspire

The Printed Circuit Engineering Association® (PCEA) is an international network of engineers, designers, fabricators, assemblers, and anyone related to printed circuit development. Our mission is to promote printed circuit engineering as a profession by encouraging and facilitating the exchange of information and the integration of new design concepts through education, certification, communications, seminars, and workshops. This is facilitated by a network of local, regional, virtual PCEA-affiliated chapters and the support of our sponsors.