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40 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 for example. Be sure your board can tolerate thermal stress or solder joints risk breaking and damaging components. 3. Pay Attention to the Design Rules Not every manufacturer prioritizes making DFM rule sets for popular design tools avail- able, cost-effective, and up to date. Work- ing with a manufacturer who does will save time and money in the end. Using design rule checks (DRC) alone will not guarantee manu- facturability, but performing them is a great way to ensure that you have created as close to an error-free design as possible. An error-free design is like a unicorn— it's something you can see out of the corner of your eye, but never quite catch. The goal should be a design that lowers the risk of defects and can then be manufactured and as- sembled. The DRC will help you identify conflicts—such as is- sues with insufficient clearanc- es between electrical conduc- tors—that will affect electrical func- tions and create potential manu- facturability issues. 4. Adhere to the Principles of DFM I recommend integrating all of the above into a design process that looks forward to the manufacturing process. Finding issues earlier makes them cheaper and easier to fix. From the outset, perform all design tasks while con- sidering yield and other manufacturing issues that affect cost and quality. A key element of DFM is communicating with your manufacturing partner at the beginning of the design process and regularly throughout it. Your manufacturing partners can do more than just find prob- lems. Each has valuable insight into how design decisions can impact the manufacturability, yield, and quality of the boards. Each manufacturer also has unique capabilities and process requirements that can have a large impact on the man- ufacturability of your design, making an open line of communi- cation critical. For example, your supplier(s) can confirm that you Figure 2: DFM errors. Figure 3: DFMplus report.

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