Printed Circuit Boards or PCBs as they are called are specially made circuit boards that are widely used for different types of electrical equipments nowadays. PCBs are normally used for supporting and automatically connecting the different types of connected electronic components in a board. Examples of electronic components that are used for the PCB’s include capacitors and resistors. The various types of electronic components are properly connected through the conductive pathways, signal traces and tracks that are etched neatly from the sheets of copper laminated onto the non conductive substrate. The boards that consist of these conductive as well as non conductive pathways are sometimes referred to as the Printed Wiring Boards (PWB). After the electronic and wiring components have been connected to the board, the Printed Circuit Board or Printed Wiring Board is now referred to as a Printed Circuit Board Assembly (PCBA), a Printed Circuit Assembly (PCA) or simply a Printed Circuit Board.
Printed Circuit Boards are widely preferred for making different types of electronic devices and systems. They are extremely reliable while at the same time being quite inexpensive. Although the initial costs for making them may be a bit high as the whole layout needs much time, effort and resources, in the long run PCBs are much more cost effective than many of the other types of electronic systems. They can also be manufactured and produced much quicker. This makes them perfect for large scale production within a short span of time. The quality parameters of these PCBs are often monitored and decided upon by leading boards and organizations that determine the overall structure and nature of these systems.
While manufacturing PCBs, most of the PCB manufacturing companies in China produce the printed circuits by bonding a layer of copper over the substrate. In some cases they bond the copper layer on both surfaces to create a blank PCB. The unwanted copper components are then removed once the temporary mask is applied by etching. It only leaves the traces of the copper that were meant to stay on the PCB units. Sometimes a process known as multiple electroplating is used to create these boards, depending on whether the volume that is to be produced is meant for being Sample/Prototype or for the actual production volume. This process involves adding traces of a thin layer of copper as a substrate onto the surface of the bare substrate.
A number of different methods can be used for removing the unwanted portions of the copper from the surface of the boards during the manufacturing of the PCBs. Usually, silk screen printing methods and photographic methods are used for creating PCBs that are meant for commercial usage. If the units are meant to be used for smaller scale projects, then production techniques like laser printed resist, laser resist ablation, print onto transparent films can be used for creating these boards. Another popular technique is by using the CNC-mill systems. With these systems, the common methods employed are silk screen printing, milling and photoengraving.