Printed Circuit Boards
The demand for electronic devices is so high, the PCB assembly and manufacturing market is growing at a sustainable rate. The printed circuit assembly manufacturing industry is growing with the demand and making adaptations to the product, to go along with the market growth.
The technology surrounding PCBs is constantly evolving. With their current trajectory, PCBs are on their way to becoming some of the most desirable and coveted electric technology on the market. That being said, it’s good to know where this hardware is going in the future when making your decision on a PCB to purchase. The following list is 10 of the most noticeable trends in the PCB market/industry.
The continuous rise in small electronic devices, primarily phones. The insatiable demand for innovation continues to push hardware smaller and smaller. PCBs not only have to be smaller from a surface area perspective, they need to be even thinner as well.
Internet of Things
The demand for connectivity, like smart devices, the implementation of the internet of things is becoming more and more prevalent. The internet of things means physical objects that have a combination of hardware and software to connect with other devices and exchange data over communication networks.
Increased Oversight in Supply Chain
A serious issue, in regard to PCBs and hardware in general, are counterfeit pieces and components by circuit card assembly manufacturers. Each new component used or PCB designed presents an opportunity for forgery, so tightening oversight will be common to reduce the opportunity for forgeries. This increased oversight will also lead to new practices in keeping private information private.
COTS, or Commercial Off The Shelf, components are pre-made solutions to increase the speed of the design process. The use of pre-made solutions differ from the custom made solutions and they even offer an increased reliability because of more strict standards.
High Power Boards
Since the demand for Electric Vehicles is growing so much, the demand for high power boards from printed circuit board manufacturers is growing with it. Boards that are 48 volts and over, are the most targeted in high power boards. The use of high power boards are also used for solar applications, since solar panels generally operate between 24 and 48 volts. Electric vehicles operate into the hundreds of volts.
An issue with PCBs is because of the high demand in combination with all time small sizes leads to a high heat output. The issue of heat is even more prevalent with high power boards, due to the even higher demand.
The growth of connectivity between devices, like the internet of things, there is an increased chance of a breach to occur. This space has the most variance as some companies will view protection software for their PCBs to be their responsibility and others will view this as someone else’s job and ignore it.
High Density Interconnect
Better wiring density along with smaller trace widths presents the opportunity to ally more functionality and power within a small PCB. High Density Interconnect PCBs decrease the need to layer. This is the new growth opportunity for a printed circuit board company.
Since the consumer demand is for smaller PCBs, even for short production runs manual assembly is becoming less efficient. The ability to place components with an exacting machine, has become the most reliable and cost efficient option.
Increased Awareness of Carbon Footprint
The growing trend of being environmentally friendly has entered the printed circuit assembly manufacturing industry. Printed Circuit Board manufacturers are working within the new processes, one of which is to decrease the use of products that contain lead.
Flexible PCBs can handle an increased amount of stress and provide more opportunities for where it can go, within a device. Flexible PCBs are able to withstand tougher environments than traditional boards.
Where is Printed Circuit Assembly Manufacturing Going?
The printed circuit assembly manufacturing process will continue to change and the industry will continue to grow. Components are becoming more reliable but devices may be at more of a risk than ever for a hack, depending on the opinion of Printed Circuit Board manufacturers. We are seeing incredible advancements in the PCB assembly and manufacturing industry, there are more options available than ever before with PCBs.
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