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32 The PCB Magazine • December 2017 by Jim Barry PCB TECHNOLOGIES LTD (ISRAEL) Today's PCB/PCBA (CCA) designers, are faced with a much greater task than their pre- decessors. Our needs today require a great deal of thought that goes well beyond the tradition- al mindset of layout patterns of circuitry. With continual shrinking of package sizes, as well as the complexity and speed of components be- coming ever-more complex, heat dissipation is becoming a major factor. In the past, CAD lay- out design engineers gave little thought to mit- igating thermal events at a component level, which can directly affect not only performance of specific device, but also potentially create a catastrophic failure mechanism down the road. So, the question today that designers face is: How do we remove the heat without adding too much size or weight to the circuit card assem- bly? Can we find ways to build in some thermal transfer into the bare PCB board whilst balanc- ing size, weight, and performance with cost and capabilities? There are many creative ways to remove heat from the PCB, even at the specific compo- nent location. Traditionally, heat removal has been done at the component level with finned heat sinks placed over a specific component lo- cation. Unfortunately, this creates large, cum- bersome designs and/or requires some imagi- native design engineering at a box level build. The second most common methodology has been to apply a metal back to the whole PCB which can connect to the chassis and draw away some of the thermal energy. The down- side of these two typical techniques is that size and weight of some of these heat remov- al methods can also pose a challenge, especial- ly when the world of electronic packaging is shrinking, not growing. Smaller packaging and weight are now required for products such as night vision goggles, UAVs and soldier-worn technologies, to name a few. FEATURE

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