Ball grid array devices are an increasingly important aspect of printed circuit board design. While their benefits are numerous, they present the unique challenge of requiring an enormous amount of traces to originate in a small area underneath a device and then go all over the board without crossing traces. The most challenging aspect is getting those traces out from underneath the board, a process called creating a breakout or fanout.
Open-source hardware has been making headlines for years, but only now is it finally enjoying the same mainstream adoption that the Creative Commons and open-source software have enjoyed for over two decades. There are growing numbers of hardware designs publicly available to study, modify, distribute, and replicate.
The Dual PCB Configurable Logic Design Contest will be this year’s entry in Convergence Promotion’s 2015 Big I.D.E.A. (International Design Engineering Award). The contest will feature Dual PCB Configurable Logic, Load Switches, Protection and Filtering, Small Signal MOSFETs, and Small Signal Diodes. With merchandise awards worth a total of $12,000 for the most creative designs.
Printed circuit boards, at first glance, seem like simple rectangles imprinted with intricate copper designs. There are many variables involved with creating PCBs- yet, the underlying foundation, the laminate, is sometimes glossed over. Much as a house of extremely high quality can be destroyed by a shaky foundation, a well-designed circuit can be ruined by an inappropriate laminate.
To date, the world has deployed about 5 billion "smart" connected things. Predictions say there will be 50 billion connected devices by 2020. How things are fundamentally deployed today is a barrier to realizing those numbers. The industry will only achieve the reality of 50 billion connected devices by simplifying how things connect and communicate today.