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104 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I AUGUST 2020 a result, it could cause difficulties at the pro- duction. In general, all FPC tolerances are more relaxed than PCB tolerances. All features listed in the production rules have lists of sub- requirements for tolerances for those same fea- tures. FPC designers have to take into account all the relevant tolerances. That will lead to smooth and faster production. Collaboration with the assembly house is also important. My personal preference is working with those vendors that integrated both FPC production and assembly facilities. This combination of two industries under one roof provides an advantage of a collaborative effort of FPC production and assembly in creating comprehensive design rules, bet- ter and prompt customer support, and fast communication between departments in problem solving. In addition to this, the FPC handling and transfer are more reliable and accountable at these combined production houses. Summary This technical article has provided a brief overview of tips for the new flex designer, including important flex design techniques and must-list requirements for keeping FPCs flexible. The flex designer should always collabo- rate with electrical, mechanical, production, assembly, test, and DFM groups for final prod- uct success. Specific requirements are applied based on applications, production specifics, flex materials and environmental require- ments. Flex designers must understand and incorporate all production restrictions and lim- itations into their layout design rules. FLEX007 Olga Scheglov, CID+, is an electri- cal engineer with over 20 years of experience in rigid and flexible printed circuit board design and production. She has 11 years of teaching experience and is cur- rently a CID instructor with EPTAC. TNO at Holst Centre Taking Significant Steps Toward Enabling 3D Printing for Electronics 3D printed electronics is currently in the early stages of development and an emerging technology at the intersection of 3D printing and printed electronics. TNO at Holst Centre has created several proof-of-concept demonstrators in collaboration with partners like Signify, Bosch and Neotech in the Hyb-Man consortium. This European consortium has developed and imple- mented methods to apply 3D printing to electronic prod- ucts and consists of partners from every link in the value chain. Hyb-Man aims for complete, first-time-right pro- cesses that reduce waste and enable personalisation. The result? A significant step towards the design and manufacturing of customised electronics. 3D Printed Electronics 3D printed electronics com- bines structural and electronic manufacturing into a single step. The electronic circuits are created using printed electronics technologies as part of the 3D printing pro- duction process, embedding them directly into structural components. In designing products, there is no longer a need for separate circuit boards or electronics layers, giving complete design freedom and inherent protection from dust and dirt. Promising application areas include: • Customized, lightweight smart wearables for the medical industry, the defence sector and consumers • Small-series semiconductor packaging • Free-form antennas for automotive, communications and defence Partnerships TNO at Holst Centre's role in the Hyb-Man project was the development of 3D printed electronics process and the manufacturing of demonstrators. Holst Centre wants to continue to explore the potential of this promising technology and are keen to hear from potential partners to help shape the technology roadmap. (Source: TNO) TNO at Holst Centre Taking Significant Steps Toward Enabling 3D Printing for Electronics

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