I-Connect007 Editor’s Choice: Five Must-Reads for the Week

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We’re into December, and the new year is around the corner. Things are looking pretty good for our industry. Trade show attendance is back up to pre-COVID levels, and a lot of companies are having banner years. Has the virtual trade show gone the way of the dodo bird? Let’s hope!

This week, our must-reads include articles and news items on the decline of R&D, STEM education for kids, why vias do not heat up, the need for more DFT, and the lack of movement toward intelligent data transfer. Designers just love their Gerbers, but Dana Korf has a few ideas about how to make Gerbers obsolete.

Have a good weekend!

R&D Takes Back Seat Amidst Chip Shortage—But It Shouldn’t 
Published December 8

R&D has been in a precarious position ever since the demise of the old captive system, and the recent supply chain brouhaha has put a squeeze on the remaining research and development. Malcolm Thompson of NextFlex explains why this doesn’t have to be the case, and what can be done to get the white-coated folks in this industry back to their microscopes.

Dana on Data: PCB Data Transfer Non-evolution 
Published December 8

Columnist Dana Korf has made it his mission to spearhead the switch to intelligent data transfer, since many of the errors found by CAM are the result of inefficient data transfer. In this column, Dana points out that many PCB designers are now transferred on scanned copies of paper documents, and he offers a few suggestions for ways to jump-start the move to a completely intelligent data transfer.

Siemens’ Hour of Engineering to Spark Middle School Interest in STEM
Published December 7

We always say, “Get the kids interested in STEM when they’re young.” Well, Siemens is doing just that, taking their show on the road to middle schools. At 11 and 12 years old, they’re able to grasp concepts like this, and it just might get them thinking about a career in STEM as they go through high school and college. And they can probably sit through one hour. We need to do more to reach the K-12 students.

Electronics vs. Physics: Why Vias Don’t Get Hot 
Published December 6

Why don’t vias get hot? It seems like they would heat up, since they connect multiple layers full of traces that do heat up. But that’s not the case, as Doug Brooks and Johannes Adam report in this article. They explain why vias don’t heat up, why thermal vias don’t work, and which parts of IPC-2152 are out of date regarding vias and temperatures. You might wind up understanding Joule heating!

The Test Connection: Spreading the Word About DFT
Published December 7

The drive for DFT is picking up steam now, after years of being seen as an unnecessary option.  Increasing signal speeds and shrinking features have made DFT a necessity now. At PCB Carolina, I spoke with Bert Horner of The Test Connection about the need for designers to keep test in mind, and why DFT can’t be considered an afterthought for most of today’s designs.



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I-Connect007 Editor’s Choice: Five Must-Reads For the Week

02/03/2023 | Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
It’s Feb. 3, 2023—2/3/23—and now we know the results of yesterday’s Groundhog weather forecast straight from Gobbler’s Knob in Pennsylvania. Punxsutawney Phil says six more weeks of winter. If you’re watching the ongoing ice storms blanketing much of the United States at present, that seems like a safe bet. Also a safe bet is that the most-read news this week is IPC APEX EXPO related. Additionally, this week IPC published its EMS and PCB numbers for December. All told, lots of industry news to read this week.

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