IPC-2581 Continues to Flourish

Reading time ( words)

New processes and standards seem to be popping out of the woodwork these days. With Industry 4.0 and other initiatives coming to the forefront, now—more than ever—there is a need to start earnestly looking at what is out there and if (or how) it can be implemented to meet your technical and business goals.

For example, take board manufacturing data. For years, Gerber data has dominated as the de-facto way to provide information to bare board shops along with drill files and manual README files that need to be included to ensure that everything is clearly understood. ODB++, while also around for a while, was considered the new way to communicate; however, adoption was slow and never really caught on as a preferred way of sharing data.

Issues With Current Methodologies

Today, it takes multiple disparate files to represent bare board and assembly information. Not only does it take time to create and verify them before they go out the door, but once the downstream vendor receives the files, the data must be reformatted to enable the various machines to read the data the way they were programmed to interpret it—as they all “speak” different languages. This can require hours of manual effort. Then, each time design changes occur, the same process needs to be repeated. Add to this having to communicate with overseas suppliers, and the issues multiply.

In addition, electronic computer-aided design (ECAD) is only one piece of a much larger, project-centric definition that needs to be captured and ultimately, optimized. It does not contain all of the part information, software, and mechanical data that ultimately defines a full, working product.

There Has to Be A Better Way

Because standards adoption in this industry tends to be akin to turning around a battleship, what is often seen as new has generally already been in production for 10 years or more. Often, there are outside influences and dependencies that cause this, so most of us tend to take a “wait-and-see” approach—let others shake out the issues. And even then, we only look at adoption if the mandate comes from higher-ups in the organization. It works the way we do it now, so why change?

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



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.