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MAY 2021 I DESIGN007 MAGAZINE 75 Spread the word. If you want to announce a significant electronics industry event, please send details to, and we will consider adding it to the list. Conclusion My seventh-grade woodshop teacher said, "Measure twice, cut once," and I've never for- gotten it. Sometimes we get caught up on mea- suring the accuracy of others to our own stan- dards when we should be adjusting and cali- brating our standards to others. Collaboration requires action, communication, and a consis- tent set of standards. May we all seek to reach out and understand the challenges of others first, then measure our own outputs to com- pare whether we need to adjust and calibrate our knowledge, workflows, and processes to move ahead. See you next month or sooner! DESIGN007 Kelly Dack, CIT, CID+, is the communication officer for the Printed Circuit Engineering Association (PCEA). To read past columns or contact Dack, click here. Insulated metal PCBs (IMPCB) or metal-clad PCBs (MCPCB) are a thermal management design that utilizes a layer of solid metal to dissipate the heat generated by the various components on the PCBs. When metal is attached to a PCB, the bond- ing material can either be thermally conductive but electrically isolative (IMPCBs or MCPCBs), or in the case of RF/microwave circuits, the bonding mate- rial may be both electrically and thermally conduc- tive. The reason that RF designers usually have the bonding material thermally and electrically conductive is that they are using this not only as a heat sink but also as part of the ground layer. The design considerations are quite different for these different applications. This chapter will focus on the IMPCB design considerations, and Chapter 4 will focus on RF thermal manage- ment. We will focus on things designers should be discussing with their PCB supplier to ensure manufactur- ability and a successful product launch. Since the choices, options, and decisions can be extremely complicated, it is critical to engage early and collaborate with the PCB fabricator about the specific design to ensure the most cost-effective solution. Some of the more common applications of IMPCBs include: • Power Conversion: Thermal-clad offers a variety of thermal performances, is compatible with mechanical fasteners, and is highly reliable • LEDs: Using thermal-clad PCBs ensures the lowest possible operating temperatures and maximum brightness, color, and life • Photovoltaic Energy: Renewable energy to power telecommunications, military camps, residential and commercial structures, and battery charging stations • Motor Drives: Thermal-clad dielectric choices provide the electrical isolation needed to meet operating parameters and safety agency test requirements • Solid-State Relays: Thermalclad offers a very thermally efficient and mechanically robust substrate • Automotive: The automotive industry uses thermal-clad boards, as they need long term reliability under high operating temperatures coupled with their requirement of effective space utilization Click here to download this free book. 'The Printed Circuit Designer's Guide to... Thermal Management: A Fabricator's Perspective,' Chapter 2: IMPCBs or MCPCBs Book Excerpt

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