ODB++: Transforming Ideas Into Products


Reading time ( words)

This year, I witnessed an impressive natural event that I had never experienced before in all my life as a native Californian. The painted lady butterfly migration starts from the southeastern deserts of California heading northwest to Oregon, Washington, and further north into Alaska. While that distance covered by a butterfly with a wingspan of 2–3 inches is amazing, what was so impressive was the sheer number of them. This year’s migration represented one billion butterflies, all striving to survive the long journey north. Throughout California, one could simply step outside to witness the most elegant stream of butterflies, one after the other, for days on end.

Mentor headline shot.JPG

What does a butterfly migration have to do with transferring intelligent PCB data from design through the manufacturing process? The process of transforming from an earthbound caterpillar into a beautiful flying butterfly where each has a unique wing pattern is not much different than transforming an idea for a product into a schematic, and through hard work, into a unique PCB design. The difference is that nature has created a perfectly connected process, but we still are challenged doing our same process repeatedly with positive results. In the case of a PCB design, the transfer of the design intent and the manufacturing process needs are not yet connected in unison.

The ODB format originated with the objective of delivering on this need. The format was originally introduced for use by PCB fabricators, eliminating the need for a collection of CAM files in multiple formats—such as Gerber, Excellon, IPC-356, or even IPC-350, which was an early attempt to simplify this process. The key to the success of ODB was that it obtained industry acceptance. There was a friendly, informal group working together as early adopters put aside their previous thinking in the hopes of achieving a quick transformation from an effective product model into a deliverable PCB with the minimal amount of data manipulation possible, and in an effective, repeatable, and reliable manner.

To read this entire article, which appeared in the September 2019 issue of Design007 Magazine, click here.

Share

Print


Suggested Items

Why We Simulate

04/29/2021 | Bill Hargin, Z-zero
When Bill Hargin was cutting his teeth in high-speed PCB design some 25 years ago, speeds were slow, layer counts were low, dielectric constants and loss tangents were high, design margins were wide, copper roughness didn’t matter, and glass-weave styles didn’t matter. Dielectrics were called “FR-4” and their properties didn’t matter much. A fast PCI bus operated at just 66 MHz. Times have certainly changed.

Bridging the Simulation Tool Divide

04/12/2021 | I-Connect007 Editorial Team
Todd Westerhoff of Siemens EDA recently spoke with the I-Connect007 Editorial Team about the divide between users of high-powered enterprise simulation tools and those who need a more practical tool for everyday use, and how Siemens is working to bridge the gap. Todd also shared his views on why so many engineers do not use simulation, as well as advice for engineers just getting started with simulation tools.

Barry Olney’s High-Speed Simulation Primer

04/09/2021 | I-Connect007 Editorial Team
The I-Connect007 editorial team recently spoke with Barry Olney of iCD about simulation. Barry, a columnist for Design007 Magazine, explains why simulation tools can have such a steep learning curve, and why many design engineers are still not using simulation on complex high-speed designs.



Copyright © 2021 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.