IPC APEX EXPO Standards Development Reports: Rigid Boards, Embedded Devices, Design and Data Transfer

These committee reports from IPC APEX EXPO should help you keep up-to-date on what’s happening in IPC standards. Visit www.ipc.org/committees for more information on standards development, drafts and minutes. The standards tree is another excellent reference with an organizational chart for IPC standards and contact information for the committee liaisons.

Printed Board Design

The 1-10c Test Coupon and Artwork Generation Task Group discussed amendments to the A/B-R plated through-hole evaluation coupon design that has been approved as a replacement for the legacy A and B and A/B test coupon designs. The AB/R design is being incorporated into the B revision of IPC-2221, Generic Standard on Printed Board Design, which is expected to be released in the fall of 2012.

Data Generation and Transfer

The 2-16 Product Data Description (Laminar View) Subcommittee discussed the status of revision A of IPC-2581, Generic Requirements for Printed Board Assembly Products Manufacturing Description Data and Transfer Methodology. The document and XML schema are in the process of final ballot and were posted on the data transfer website webstds.ipc.org after the meeting. Three companies are providing free viewers of the 2581 data file.

Electronic Documentation Technology

The 2-40 Electronic Documentation Technology Committee discussed the relationship of the IPC-261X, IPC-2581X, and IPC-175X series of documents. Attendees also reviewed comments and made decisions on requests for changes to the two schematic description documents, IPC-2612 and IPC-2612-1. The committee developed a strategy for incorporation of the XML and data models for laminate (incorporating IPC-1753 concepts), printed boards (incorporating IPC-1754 concepts), and assemblies (incorporating IPC-1755 concepts). Meetings are planned throughout 2012 to start the work on revisions to the series as well as to the assembly and testing standards.

High Speed/High Frequency

The D-22 High Speed/High Frequency Board Performance Subcommittee celebrated the release of Revision B of IPC-6018, Qualification and Performance Specification for RF/Microwave Printed Boards. Key updates to this revision include a new concept for defining thermal zones in microsection evaluations, conductor spacing requirements and allowances for PTFE resin smear.

The D-23 High Speed/High Frequency Base Materials Subcommittee celebrated the release of Revision A of IPC-4103, Specification for Base Materials for High Speed/High Frequency Applications, which includes a new template for new material specification (slash) sheets. The concept utilizes a “tight/loose” slash sheet approach that has “tight” mandatory requirements for some attributes (Dk, Df, description) and “loose” requirements for others (e.g. thermal conductivity, moisture absorption) that can be certified to or called out on the fabrication drawings.

Embedded Devices

The D-54 Embedded Devices Test Methods Subcommittee reviewed TM 2.5.34, Power Density Rating for Embedded Formed Resistors, and sent the final draft of the test method to the Test Methods Subcommittee (7-11) for their comments and approval of this test method to be inserted into the IPC Test Methods Manual, IPC-TM-650.

The D-55 Embedded Devices Process Implementation Subcommittee continued development on IPC-7092, Design and Assembly Process Implementation for Embedded Components. The group reaffirmed the methodology to simplify the number of different processes that could be used in building an embedded substrate package. These concepts will simplify the document’s description of the processing steps needed to build an embedded device product. A proposed draft is planned for the meeting at IPC Midwest in August.

Base Materials

The 3-11 Laminate/Prepreg Materials Subcommittee worked on revising IPC-4101C, Specification for Base Materials for Rigid and Multilayer Printed Boards. Proposed items for inclusion were: a) adding DMA thermal analysis testing for more accurate Tg measurement for approximately 20 percent of the current 66 specification sheets; b) inserting the property of fracture toughness of laminate resin as an optional test and c) specification sheets being regrouped or rationalized to make the specification easier to use.

The 3-11f UL/CSA Task Group addressed the FR-4 re-classification issue that is currently in the UL balloting process.  A clear description of the issue was presented to UL standards group members so they have a clear idea of what success or failure of the UL ballot really means for the global industry.

The 3-11g Corrosion of Metal Finishes Task Group began round robin testing in four separate mixed flowing gas chambers, but no data was available for discussion.  Additionally, a fifth chamber in a separate company’s facility is likely to be available.

The 3-12a Metallic Foil Task Group reviewed test results from six different test facilities that use noncontact surface roughness measuring equipment on the same set of roughness standards that were being routed to all of the test facilities.  These roughness standards are not samples of treated copper foil, but are very uniformly roughened material surfaces so that the variability experienced when measuring actual treated copper foil is not present. Once the roughness standards are measured by all testers, Gauge R&R calculations will be made to judge the viability of roughness measurements using noncontact techniques.

The 3-12d Woven Glass Reinforcement Task Group continued discussions on revising IPC-4412A, Specification for Finished Fabric Woven from ‘‘E’’ Glass for Printed Boards to its B revision. The group is establishing a permittivity requirement value for E-glass, where data from two sets of measurements on separate test specimens are being combined to provide better statistics by generating statistics from a larger population.

Fabrication Processes

The 4-14 Plating Processes Subcommittee continued its work on IPC-4556, Specification for Electroless Nickel/Electroless Palladium/Immersion Gold Plating for Printed Circuit Boards.  Group discussions focused in on the nominal values and statistical tolerances required for the three metals involved in the ENEPIG finish.

Rigid Printed Boards

The D-31b IPC-2221/2222 Task Group met to review comments from the Final Draft for Industry Review circulation of revision B of IPC-2221, Generic Standard on Printed Board Design.  The task group plans to ballot this document revision in the summer of 2012.

Members of the D-33a Rigid Printed Board Performance Specifications and 7-31a Task Groups continued efforts for a future revision D to IPC-6012, Qualification and Performance Specification for Rigid Printed Boards. The task group entertained presentations from subgroups actively working via a series of web conferences on the following subjects: metal-based printed board acceptance criteria, updates to HDI/microvia criteria, and an Amendment 1 to IPC-6012C that addresses lot frequency testing and periodic conformance testing with the new 1-10c test coupon set that will be released with IPC-2221B later in 2012.

The D-35 Board Storage and Handling Subcommittee discussed goals for revising IPC-1601, Printed Board Handling and Storage Guidelines. They noted how the standard has addressed detection of moisture level in printed boards and how to effectively remove moisture prior to packaging. However, IPC-1601 does not discussed issues of material construction and how moisture and delamination may or may not be related to one another. The subcommittee agreed to explore further the relationship between moisture content and printed board delamination to see if there are instances where printed board moisture may not be a significant concern for printed board storage.

Questions? Want to know more? Send an e-mail to answers@ipc.org.

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