• September 2022 Newsletter

    PCEA

    CHAPTER NEWSLETTER – September 2022

    Hello members!

    The PCEA Annual Meeting will take place Oct. 4 at the Santa Clara Convention Center, in conjunction with PCB West. All PCEA members in good standing are invited to attend. The 2023-24 board will be formally introduced at the meeting.

    Scott McCurdy in August stepped down as Membership committee chairman. Mike Creeden takes over as Membership chair and will continue as vice chairman until board elections are finalized.

    “Please join me in thanking Scott for all his past and current actions and dedication to service in getting PCEA chapters kickstarted over these past two years,” said board chairman Stephen Chavez. “Scott will continue his involvement with chapter activities as chairman of the PCEA Orange County chapter, and on the executive board.”

    And a reminder that the technical program for PCB West 2022 features nearly 50 presentations, including nine free ones. Free sessions include:

    • Understanding High Frequency Materials Test Methods for Dk and Df
    • Dynamic Guidelines for Design with SAP (Semi-Additive Processes)
    • How Heterogenous Integration Affects the PCB Industry
    • Evaluating Emerging PCB Technologies Through Industry Collaboration
    • The 21 Most Common Design Errors Caught by Fabrication (and How to Prevent Them)
    • Leveraging CFX-QPL to Integrate Equipment and Create a Smart Factory
    • IPC-2581’s Bi-directional Electronically Executable DFx Exchange Accelerates NPI
    • The A+ PCB Outline Drawing

    Plus our keynote, Augmented and Virtual Reality, the Next Computer Revolution, featuring Dr. Brian Toleno of Meta.

    The free exhibition is on October 5 from 10 am to 6 pm, and includes free lunch on the show floor from 12 to 1 pm and an end-of-day reception from 5 to 6 pm.

    Registration is now open at pcbwest.com. Don’t wait: registration is free through Oct. 4, but $25 on the day of show.


    Mike Buetow

    PCEA President
    mike@pcea.net

     

    Local Chapters

    Please forward your chapter news to pcea@pcea.net for inclusion on our website and in future newsletters.

    ORANGE COUNTY, CA – Steph Chavez and Gerry Partida are putting together a presentation on “Best Practices” focusing on do’s and don’ts, which will be a dialog between a designer and fabricator. We’ve reserved a venue on October 19 to hold this live Lunch ‘n Learn.

    SILICON VALLEY – We held an in-person meeting on August 4 at Siemens EDA in Fremont, CA, fearuting a good presentation by Carl Schattke. (Carl will also be presenting at PCB West next month.) No immediate plans available for next meeting.

    OCTOBER ELECTIONS – Last call to vote for the next board of directors. All PCEA members in good standing are eligible to vote for the board of directors. PCEA members may vote for up to 12 individuals for the board. Please use the link here access the ballot.

    Reading Material

    Highlights of the September issue of PCD&F/Circuits Assembly:

    • ECAD industry wages are rising. (Tell me something I didn’t know.) Results of our annual PCB designer/design engineer salary survey.
    • Why I4.0 and reshoring go hand in hand. According to research firm IDTechEx, it’s only a matter of time before an array of sensors and cobots spur far greater automation and flexibility.
    • Tacking material for power module assembly. A no-flux reflow process can mitigate residue issues in vacuum soldering and avoid additional cleaning steps that add process time and cost.
    • Ensuring proper alignment of layers and components on a PCB. Why a tooling hole remains the answer for an end-to-end process.

    Read it all here.

    Have an idea for an article? Contact us at pcea@pcea.net. No writing experience required!

    Committees

    The Education Committee receives requests each month for mentors. If you are open to helping coach colleagues looking to develop their design or engineering skills, or provide career advice, please let us know at pcea@pcea.net.

    The Orange County Chapter meeting in July marked a return to in-person peer networking and instruction.
  • August 2022 Newsletter

    PCEA

    CHAPTER NEWSLETTER – August 2022

    Hello members!

    Our local chapters are returning to in-person meetings and the early feedback is very positive. Peer-to-peer networking and mentorship is at the very core of PCEA’s mission. The chapters exist to instruct, inform and connect designers and engineers across the electronics supply chain. They offer a wide variety of technical topics, plus access to colleagues who might serve as future go-to’s for technical and professional advice.

    We strongly encourage you to take advantage of the local chapters or even help start one in your area.

    Our scheduled free 90-minute webinar on EMI/EMC by Harry Kennedy Jr. has been postponed to Aug. 11. See Other Educational Opportunities below for more details.

    The technical program for PCB West 2022 features nearly 50 presentations and more than 110 hours of in-depth electronics engineering training. Professional education hours are offered for the technical conference, which can be used for maintaining professional certifications and for corporate training program requirements.

    Here are just a few of the topics:

    • Best Practices for Hardware IP Reuse
    • Power Integrity and Decoupling
    • Understanding PCB Fabrication Processes
    • PCB Design for Engineers
    • Understanding Basic High Speed PCB Layout
    • PCB Layout of Switch Mode Power Supplies
    • RF and Microwave PCB Design

    Keep in mind that PCB West also feature two day-long tracks of free sessions, which coincide with the (free) exhibits on Octover 5. The conference takes place October 4 to 7 at the Santa Clara (CA) Convention Center and features classes for every level of experience, from novice to expert. Registration is now open at pcbwest.com.


Mike Buetow

PCEA President
mike@pcea.net

 

Local Chapters

Just a few updates this month. Please forward your chapter news to pcea@pcea.net for inclusion on our website and in future newsletters.

ORANGE COUNTY, CA – We held our first in-person Lunch ‘n Learn meeting event in 2½ years on July 26 in Santa Ana, CA. It was hosted by Insulectro and attracted an audience of 44 designers, engineers, and fabricators to listen to three educational presentations.

Two topics were presented by Chris Hunrath, vice president of technology at Insulectro.

Signal integrity applications in layout was very detailed in applying SI theory to a layout, where he covered EM fields, laminates, copper profile, uninterrupted GND return path, impedance discontinuities from your routing, and proper shielding.

Advanced via solutions using Ormet pastes was also presented by Chis, who had some excellent slides discussing applications for addressing Z-axis interconnects for multi-lam HDI, backdrill elimination, solving high aspect ratio plating on high layer count boards, and any-layer-via usage. A variety of different stack-up constructions were shown which got many designers thinking how this sintered metal process could bring a variety of solutions to the designer. This is a mature process that could provide improved cost and performance in many applications in comparison to the standard PCB multilayer process.

Chris will also present at PCB West this fall.

Overcoming flex design challenges was presented by Geoffrey Leeds, CID, flex product manager at Insulectro. In his presentation, Geoffrey spoke about overcoming flex design challenges by understanding the building blocks; pitfalls to avoid during layout; dynamic vs. static design constraint; and the proper materials and their applications. Many designers in the audience were unfamiliar with flex circuit design practices, so this presentation was a well-received learning experience.

Compared to webinars, the in-person experience allowed for many questions from the audience which elicited answers from the presenters, as well as fabricators and others in the room that had insightful responses that added to the knowledge exchange. The Lunch ‘n Learn meeting wrapped up the drawing for eight raffle prizes totaling over $1,000 including a Footprint Expert software license from PCB Libraries, restaurant gift cards from Freedom CAD Services, and Amazon gift cards from Siemens EDA and Insulectro.

SILICON VALLEY – We will hold our next meeting Aug. 4 from 11:30 to 1:30 at Siemens EDA (Mentor Graphics) in Fremont, CA. This is a Lunch ‘n Learn, featuring Carl Schattke, whose presentation is The A+ PCB Outline Drawing.

This presentation will save design teams time and money and prepare them for optimal communication for a fast start to the design process. All the important points of the PCB outline drawing will be reviewed, so attendees will know what to look for and what to ask for when creating or receiving an outline drawing. The details of what should be on the outline drawing will be shown and listed so attendees will gather the proper information.

Emphasis will be placed on design details, including dimensions, tolerancing, hole call-outs, component marking, and critical features for manufacturing and cost control. Keep-out designations, height requirements. Drawing formats and outputs. The author intends to leave attendees a much higher level of understanding the critical aspects of starting a PCB design the right way.

This is sponsored by Siemens EDA. Please RSVP no later than 4 pm on Aug. 1. All attendees must preregister here.

OCTOBER ELECTIONS – A ballot for the October election of the board of directors has been circulated via email. All PCEA members in good standing are eligible to vote for the board of directors. PCEA members may vote for up to 12 individuals for the board. Please use the link here access the ballot. Directors are nominated by the nominating task group and voted on by the general membership.

Please forward your chapter news to us at pcea@pcea.net inclusion on our website and in future newsletters.

 

Other Educational Opportunities

EMI/EMC – Join Harry Kennedy Jr. August 11 (note new date) for a special 90-minute webinar on EMI/EMC. If you are not a signal integrity (SI) expert, the thought of EMI/EMC issues might bring you chills. As PCB simulation tools continue to improve, it’s important to incorporate signal integrity checks early in the design process. Instead of waiting for the analysis results after laying out your PCB, why not implement best practices into your verification process.

This noncommercial webinar, free to all PCEA members, will look at common EMI/EMC issues, and how they can be traced back to design best practices. It will also look at how to can use rule-based verification to automatically check for indicators, saving time and money.

This workshop is meant for beginner to mid-level PCB designers and SI engineers. The purpose of this workshop is to add a skillset that helps free up the time of the SI expert. This workshop also encourages users to add best practices into their current workflow by adopting this methodology. This workshop can be done with generic DfE and DfM tools. Register today!

 

Reading Material

Highlights of the August issue of PCD&F/Circuits Assembly:

  • THE PCB MARKET – It’s unsinkable and unstoppable. Dr. Hayao Nakahara provides his annual NTI-100 list of the largest PCB fabricators, along with commentary on where the industry is headed. (Hayao Nakahara)
  • BOARD BUYING – Are you correctly calculating landed PCB costs? PCB buyers often overlook fluctuating freight costs when considering total cost of ownership (TCO) of the offshore products they purchase. (Greg Papandrew)
  • ASSEMBLY DEFECTS – A cure for head-in-pillow. Reflow in an oxygen-filled environment can lead to all sorts of defects. Can the vapor phase reflow process address HiP in BGA/LGA hybrid connectors? (by Hunter Pullishy, Sandy Yimbo, and Jose Pineda)
  • THE WORKPLACE –  PCB design requires people skills. (Ain’t that the truth!) (John Burkhert Jr.)
  • FLEX CIRCUITS – Are your flex circuit tooling costs higher than those for rigid boards? And if so, it that normal? (Mark Finstad)

Read it all here.

Have an idea for an article? Contact us at pcea@pcea.net. No writing experience required!

And look for the September issue of PCD&F/CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY, which features the results of our annual PCB designer/design engineer salary survey.

 

Committees

The Education Committee receives requests each month for mentors. If you are open to helping coach colleagues looking to develop their design or engineering skills, or provide career advice, please let us know at pcea@pcea.net.

The Orange County Chapter meeting in July marked a return to in-person peer networking and instruction.
  • July 2022 Newsletter

    PCEA

    CHAPTER NEWSLETTER – July 2022

    Hello members!

    It’s summer here in North America and Europe, and as we move into the hot summer months, we hope you are finding ways to stay cool and enjoy yourselves.

    We want to call attention this month to a couple items ahead of us:

    • The annual PCB designer/design engineer salary survey will be open for a few more days. Please take a moment to complete it. This year we offer two forms: 1) our classic comprehensive version that encompasses all aspects of the field, from compensation to technology, and 2) an abridged, 13-question version that focuses only on compensation and can be completed in fewer than two minutes. Take your pick! https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/N989JS3
    • PCEA will host a free 90-minute webinar on EMI/EMC by Harry Kennedy Jr. on July 27. See Other Educational Opportunities below for more details.
    • The technical program for PCB West 2022 features nearly 50 presentations and more than 110 hours of in-depth electronics engineering training. Professional education hours are offered for the technical conference, which can be used for maintaining professional certifications and for corporate training program requirements. Among the industry experts on tap for this year’s show are Rick Hartley, Susy Webb, Thomas Chester and Dan Beeker. The conference will be held October 4 to 7 at the Santa Clara (CA) Convention Center and features classes for every level of experience, from novice to expert. Registration is now open at pcbwest.com.


    Mike Buetow

    PCEA President
    mike@pcea.net

     

     

    Local Chapters

    ALBUQUERQUE – There is interest in forming a local PCEA chapter here. Please contact pcea@pcea.net if you are interested in helping the launch.

    DALLAS – Harry Kennedy is looking for individuals within the DFW Metroplex to help build and develop the Dallas Chapter. If you’re interested in helping, or just want to stay informed, please fill out the form here.

    DENVER – There is interest in forming a local PCEA chapter here. Please contact pcea@pcea.net if you are interested in helping the launch.

    NEW ENGLAND – There is interest in forming a local PCEA chapter here. Please contact pcea@pcea.net if you are interested in helping the launch.

    ONTARIO (CANADA) – The Ontario chapter had 25 attendees for its Lunch and Learn on June 8.

    ORANGE COUNTY, CA – The Orange County chapter is hoping to hold an in-person meeting this month.

    NATIONAL – We held a free 90-minute webinar by Kunal Shah on surface finish selection on June 28. You may register to view the recorded presentation here.

    OCTOBER ELECTIONS – A ballot for the October election of the board of directors will be circulated shortly. Please look for it and be sure to respond. Directors are nominated by the nominating task group and voted on by the general membership, with ballots circulated a minimum 60 days prior to the annual meeting (currently scheduled for October 4, 2022, at PCB West).

    Please forward your chapter news to Chelsey Drysdale (chelsey@pcea.net) for inclusion on our website and in future newsletters.

     

    Other Educational Opportunities

    EMI/EMC – Join Harry Kennedy Jr. on July 27 for a special 90-minute webinar on EMI/EMC. If you are not a signal integrity (SI) expert, the thought of EMI/EMC issues might bring you chills. As PCB simulation tools continue to improve, it’s important to incorporate signal integrity checks early in the design process. Instead of waiting for the analysis results after laying out your PCB, why not implement best practices into your verification process.

    This noncommercial webinar, free to all PCEA members, will look at common EMI/EMC issues, and how they can be traced back to design best practices. It will also look at how to can use rule-based verification to automatically check for indicators, saving time and money.

    This workshop is meant for beginner to mid-level PCB designers and SI engineers. The purpose of this workshop is to add a skillset that helps free up the time of the SI expert. This workshop also encourages users to add best practices into their current workflow by adopting this methodology. This workshop can be done with generic DfE and DfM tools. Register today!

    PCB WEST – The metaverses offer myriad opportunities not just for users but for developers of computing devices. As that market takes off, what novel innovations in materials and production will be needed for printed circuit designs to meet the requirements for weight, size, and functionality?

    Those are the questions Dr. Brian Toleno, manager, Applied Materials at Meta’s Reality Labs, will tackle when he keynotes this year’s PCB West conference. His talk, Augmented and Virtual Reality, the Next Computer Revolution, will describe the current market, use cases, and the technology all around AR/VR, with a focus on the printed circuit board aspects.

    At Meta, Dr. Toleno leads a multi-disciplinary team that works on the material challenges in Meta’s consumer electronics hardware. These devices include VR headsets (Quest 2), smart glasses (Ray-Ban Stories), Portal smart screens and other exciting devices that help bring people together.

    Dr. Toleno is a leading expert in materials science for electronics applications. Prior to Meta, Dr. Toleno was director of new technology at Microsoft, working on the Hololens and director of global product management for underfills and encapsulants at Henkel. He was also a director of SMTA. He has a doctorate in chemistry from Penn State University and a bachelor’s of science in chemistry from Ursinus College.

    His talk takes place Oct. 5 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at the Santa Clara (CA) Convention Center as part of “Free Wednesday.” It’s free to attend but registration is required: pcbwest.com.

     

    Reading Material

    Highlights of the July issue of PCD&F/Circuits Assembly:

    • THERMAL MANAGEMENT – Companies should perform their own testing or develop their own thermal models to determine conductor current carrying capacity in any given technology. An explanation of IPC-2152 and the information it provides to get started. (Mike Jouppi)
    • OSP MYTHS – After many years of debate, a specification for organic solderability preservatives is finally here. IPC-4555 sets the record straight: OSPs are not all the same, and they have regained their leadership role as a final finish. (Michael Carano)
    • SUPPLY CHAIN – In May, Summit Interconnect announced its acquisition of Royal Circuit Solutions, expanding the fabricator’s capacity of rigid and flex PCBs. But it was the behind-the-scenes technologies and assembly capacity that convinced Summit president and CEO Shane Whiteside to make the deal.
    • IMPEDANCE –  Determining your optimum geometry, plus two methods for providing data to the fabricator. (John Burkhert Jr.)
    • INSPECTION – Correlating inspection trending with test data to fine-tune accept/reject parameters. (Filemon Sagrero)

    Read it all here.

     

    Committees

    The Education Committee receives requests each month for mentors. If you are open to helping coach colleagues looking to develop their design or engineering skills, or provide career advice, please let us know at pcea@pcea.net.

  • June 2022 Newsletter

    PCEA

    CHAPTER NEWSLETTER – June 2022

    Hello members!

    PCEA local chapters are made up of engineers, designers, software vendors, resellers, students, manufacturing and material professionals … basically, anyone who is involved in the electronics industry. They exist to help fulfill our mission of facilitating the sharing of design concepts concerning printed boards and related technologies all the way through engineering, fabrication, assembly, and test.

    Design engineers need a way to access information on existing and design methods, materials, packages, manufacturing processes, etc., that will enable next-generation products (or more functional/higher yielding current generation products). And then they need to push those designs downstream in a way that ensures the design intent is met.

    Standards alone aren’t enough. CAD tools aren’t enough. As product development gets more spread out geographically and split up by specialty, access to experts outside one’s company is crucial to progress, both from a product and a career development standpoint. Through the PCEA chapters, industry professionals can access that network.

    Also, there are plenty of opportunities to get more involved, whether it be on subcommittees, developing white papers, or preparing presentations.

    This is your chance to step up into a bigger arena. The possibilities that go with advancing your own career or mentoring others are endless. Contact me today to learn more.

    Mike Buetow
    PCEA President
    mike@pcea.net

    Local Chapters

    ALBUQUERQUE – There is interest in forming a local PCEA chapter here. Please contact pcea@pcea.net if you are interested in helping the launch.

    DALLAS – Harry Kennedy of Altair says: Howdy! Are you looking to help build our Texas Chapter? We’re looking for individuals within the DFW Metroplex to help build and develop our Dallas Chapter. If you’re interested in helping, or just want to stay informed, please fill out the form here.

    ONTARIO (CANADA) – Holding a Lunch and Learn about the PCEA on June 8. Learn more here.

    ORANGE COUNTY, CA – The Orange County chapter held a virtual meeting on April 20 and is hoping to plan a meeting for mid-July, which we’re going to try to do IN-PERSON for the first time in 2.5 years. This pandemic definitely slowed down our chapter activities, so I am really hoping our members are ready to emerge from their caves and attend.

    NATIONAL – We have agreed to cosponsor (with Vac Consulting) a free webinar by Dan Beeker on designing for successful EMC compliance on June 14 at 2 pm Central European Summer Time (CET) / 8 am Eastern Time. More info here.

    A free 90-minute webinar by Kunal Shah on surface finish selection is set for June 28. Following Dr. Shah’s presentation, we will have an additional 30 minutes for Q/A on any topic related to PCEA. Register here.

    We would also like to announce the addition of Doug Dixon and Anaya Vardya to our board of directors.

    Anaya is chief executive of American Standard Circuits, a Chicago-based printed circuit board fabricator. Prior to that, he held top operations positions at Coretec and Merix and was also an engineering manager at IBM for nearly a decade. He has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemical engineering. 

    Doug is chief marketing officer at 360 BC Group, Inc., a full-service B2B marketing firm focused on technology clients. He has more than 30 years in product and marketing management with leading SMT assembly companies such as Speedline, Universal Instruments, and most recently, Henkel, where he was global marketing director. He has a bachelor’s in engineering and started his career in manufacturing at Raytheon. They plan to focus first on our finance committee and strategic plan.

    OCTOBER ELECTIONS – In accordance with the PCEA bylaws, any PCEA member in good standing is eligible to be nominated for the board of directors. Board members are nominated by the nominating task group and voted on by the general membership, with ballots circulated a minimum of 60 days prior to the annual meeting (currently scheduled for October 4, 2022, at PCB West). Any members interested in joining the board should contact Steph Chavez or Mike Buetow at pcea@pcea.net no later than June 10.

    Please forward your chapter news to Chelsey Drysdale (chelsey@pcea.net) for inclusion on our website and in future newsletters.

    Other Educational Opportunities

    DDR LAYOUT WEBINAR – Join noise control expert Rick Hartley on June 7 for a two-hour webinar on PCB layout of DDR bus structures. Hartley’s presentation will focus on identifying reasonable rules and guidelines, as well as proper PCB layout concepts to ensure DDR structures function as intended without adding extra time or cost to the project. ($175) Thanks to Siemens EDA for sponsoring.

    PCB WEST – The PCEA Conferences Task Group announced the technical program for PCB West 2022, featuring nearly 50 presentations and more than 110 hours of in-depth electronics engineering training.

    Among the industry experts on tap for this year’s show are Rick Hartley, Susy Webb, Thomas Chester, and Dan Beeker. The conference will be held from October 4 to 7 at the Santa Clara (CA) Convention Center and features classes for every level of experience, from novice to expert. Registration is now open at pcbwest.com.

    Reading Material

    Highlights of the June issue of PCD&F/Circuits Assembly:

    • SIMULATION – Reflections, even from a single discontinuity, can destroy a signal, but the effect of the major discontinuities can be predicted with validated models before the board is designed. (Yuriy Shlepnev, Ph.D.)
    • SIGNAL INTEGRITY – Managing propagation delay and relative time delay mismatches is a challenge. We need to know how to calculate trace length from time delay value to implement the PCB trace routing accordingly. (Lance Wang)
    • SUPPLY CHAIN – Fresh off its inaugural meeting, the Printed Circuit Board Association of America gets legislative good news. What’s next for the organization that wants to rebuild US production? (Travis Kelly)
    • PROCUREMENT – Working with a contract manufacturer can be daunting, particularly if it lacks experience sourcing challenging parts in a challenging market. (Brian Laney)
    • IC CLEANING – A case study showed a well-balanced aqueous cleaning agent removed lead-free, water-soluble tack flux residues better than straight deionized water. (Ravi Parthasarathy and Umut Tosun)

    Read it all here.

    Committees

    The Education Committee met on May 16 to review the panel discussions for PCB West. The committee also reviewed the PCEA mentor program. We receive requests each month for mentors. If you are open to helping coach colleagues looking to develop their design or engineering skills or provide career advice, please let us know at pcea@pcea.net.

    Salary Survey

    Please take a moment to complete the annual PCD&F salary survey (link here) for designers and design engineers. This year we offer two forms: 1) our classic comprehensive version that encompasses all aspects of the field, from compensation to technology, and 2) an abridged, 13-question version that focuses only on compensation and can be completed in fewer than two minutes.