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We asked for you to send in your questions for Happy Holden, and you took us up on it! The questions you've posed run the gamut, covering technology, the worldwide fab market, and everything in between. Enjoy.
Q: Stacked microvias look good on paper, but they may have reliability problems. What are the best rules for designing stacked microvias to ensure a reliable PCB?
A: The current best practice is stacking no more than two layers, and then moving over for the next buried or blind via or stacking two layers there. The stacked vias should never be stacked on any buried vias.
An IPC committee is currently testing various stacked via configurations to have a comparison for reliability and testing coupons and design. Hopefully, they will also get at the root cause of why stacked microvias are failing at their interface.
To pose your own question for Happy Holden, take the survey by clicking here.
Cherie Litson, CID+, Litson1 Consulting
This is the million-dollar question of every project: How can I cut the cost of the PCB? There are about a thousand answers to this question. There are a few simple guidelines that everyone can follow to reduce costs. I talk about them in my IPC CID and CID+ courses. Designers, fabricators, and assemblers talk about them in a variety of articles. Some professionals who have published some great articles on cost-saving strategies include Tara Dunn, Happy Holden, Chris Church, Kella Knack, Judy Warner, Julie Ellis, Lars Wallin, and many, many others.
I-Connect007 Editorial Team
What is design with manufacturing and what does true DWM look like in operation? In this interview, I-Connect007 columnist Dana Korf explains what it will take to achieve total communication among all the stakeholders in the PCB development cycle. He also stresses the need for everyone involved in PCB design and manufacturing to stop making assumptions, even at the risk of being labeled as “that guy” who asks too many questions.
Andy Shaughnessy, Design007 Magazine
While at IPC APEX EXPO, I stopped by the Altium booth to visit with Rea Callender, vice president of education at Altium. Rea shared information about the company’s recent design competition for students around the world, as well as a new curriculum that is drawing interest from some unique locations.