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38 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I NOVEMBER 2022 Driving down cost has always been the goal of modern engineering. e phenomenal reduction in manufacturing cost we've enjoyed over the past 50 years is primarily the outcome of engineers whose goal it is to make a good, affordable product. Economic cost-effective production benefits us all, including consum- ers, defense, aerospace, and automotive sec- tors. Composites Composite materials are incredibly versa- tile; they blend the characteristics of the com- ponent parts and are engineered to result in a product with the benefits of both the compos- ite parts with few of the disadvantages of the individual constituents. In our PCB world, the use of composites gives access to PCB sub- Fitting Physics to Fact strates with as many or as few layers as desired and with a wide variety of flavors, from low cost to high reliability and high speed, whilst at the same time juggling the safety and regu- latory challenges of the available fire-retardant properties. Statistics At a large scale, many of the variations of composite materials, from an electrical per- spective, are small enough to be dismissed, but with feature dimensions and intercon- nect geometries shrinking, it's important to be aware of the inherent variation of the elec- trical properties of the substrate. ese have been dealt with in much detail by the many authors of this column. However, the result for designers of inherent electrical differences dis- The Pulse Feature Column by Martyn Gaudion, POLAR INSTRUMENTS

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