Reading time ( words)
“You can cut all the flowers, but you cannot keep spring from coming.” – Pablo Neruda
It may be early October—the cusp of “Indian Summer” in the western United States—but I was reminded of this quote as I spent the day at this year’s PCB West Conference in San Jose on Wednesday, Oct. 5.
The 30-year-old show has a purpose to train designers, engineers, fabricators and even assemblers on making printed circuit boards. It includes a four-day technical conference and a one-day exhibition. While Tuesday was a day full of panel discussions, Wednesday offered a variety of presentations, ranging from topics on printed electronics to the "mystery" of bypass capacitors.
Though the organizers of PCB West had soldiered through in delivering a conference every year during the pandemic, the virtual and hybrid models just did not quite meet the requirements for a technical conference. To be fair, the limitations weren’t PCB West’s fault; the shortcomings came from the show’s virtual environments, not the host. All the more encouraging, then, that the 2022 edition of PCB West was back in bloom.
I arrived in time for the Wednesday exhibition. It was immediately obvious that attendance this year was up significantly from recent years. One show regular said it reminded them of the attendance at PCB West 10 years ago. It was evident that the energy of the attendees was high. Mike Creeden, PCEA membership director, said, “It's nice to be back. This event is running like it should. This dynamic, there is a vibration and an energy here.”
No matter how much stress and difficulty we face, we come bouncing back.
Here are just some of the scenes from Wednesday at PCB West:
Douglas Brooks, Consultant, and Johannes Adam, ADAM Research
Most of are aware that when we pass an electrical current through a trace (conductor), the trace will heat up. This temperature increase is caused by the I2R power loss dissipated in the resistance of the trace. The resistance of a copper trace is mostly determined by its geometry (cross-sectional area), and there are lots of studies trying to look at the relationship between the current down a trace (of known size) and the resulting temperature of the trace. But the situation is much more complicated than this. There are physical properties that exist that result in helping to cool the trace. These properties are usually a combination of conduction of the heat away from the trace through the material, convection of the heat away from the trace through the air, and radiation of the heat away from the trace.
Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
It was something of a homecoming as DesignCon returned to the Santa Clara Convention Center this week for DesignCon 2022. It’s been two years since the last DesignCon was held in this venue just before the pandemic began. I attended DesignCon 2021 at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center in July of last year, and I could see a big improvement in attendance as DesignCon moved back into its usual venue.
Andy Shaughnessy, Design007 Magazine
This week, we have quite a potpourri for you. There's good news about the PCB market. And as this year continues to surprise us at every turn, companies are discovering the true nature of their leaders. Todd Kolmodin has a great column about bosses and leaders and why the two words are not synonymous. Not to be outdone, columnist Barry Olney found a way to explain the wavelength of electromagnetic energy by using a chocolate bar and a microwave oven. We also have great articles by Sagi Reuven and Pete Starkey.