PCB BASE MATERIALS

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Base Materials of PCBs

Key to ensuring a reliable and repeatable end product in PCB design is material specification. Ensuring that you choose the best materials for your specification guarantees that the cost of the product remains competitive and within budget.

The myriad of PCB material systems available can make the correct selection of material both daunting and difficult to navigate - here Pure PCB, we support you through the entire design process and help you decide on the best material for your requirements. We have the knowledge and experience to assist you in the correct selection of base laminate across a wide range of applications.

Selecting Laminate Systems for Rigid Printed Circuit Boards

One key aspect of creating a manufacturable PCB design is ensuring you select a brand of material that is fully compliant and certified to IPC4101. An IPC 4101 certified material can be used to be used for rigid or multilayer printed boards. Ensuring that your product has a compliant material system will give you the confidence that, in conjunction with a robust manufacturing process, the chosen material will provide a certified and verifiable level of performance. 

Some of the key aspect characteristics of IPC4101 material systems are shown in the table below: 

IPC Spec Number

Reinforcement

Resin System

ID Reference

Tg C min.

Z-Axis CTE max. (50 to 260C)

Td ⁰C min.

Dk @ 1MHz

IPC-4101/99

Woven E-Glass

Epoxy (1), Multifunctional Epoxy (2), Modified Epoxy or Non-Epoxy (max wt. 5%) (3), Flame Resistant

UL/ANSI FR-4/99

150⁰C

3.5%

325⁰C

5.4

IPC-4101/101

Woven E-Glass

Difunctional Epoxy (1), Multifunctional Epoxy (2),
Modified Epoxy or Non-Epoxy (max wt. 5%) (3),
Flame Resistant

UL/ANSI FR-4/101

110⁰C

4.0%

310⁰C

5.4

IPC-4101/121

Woven E-Glass

Difunctional Epoxy (1), Multifunctional Epoxy (2),
Modified Epoxy or Non-Epoxy (max wt. 5%) (3),
Flame Resistant

UL/ANSI FR-4/121

110⁰C

4.0%

310⁰C

5.4

IPC-4101/124

Woven E-Glass

Epoxy (1), Multifunctional Epoxy (2), Modified Epoxy or Non-Epoxy (max wt. 5%) (3), Flame Resistant

UL/ANSI FR-4/124

150⁰C

3.5%

325⁰C

5.4

IPC-4101/126

Woven E-Glass

Epoxy (1), Multifunctional Epoxy (2), Modified Epoxy or Non-Epoxy (max wt. 5%) (3), Flame Resistant

UL/ANSI FR-4/126

170⁰C

3.0%

340⁰C

5.4

IPC-4101/129

Woven E-Glass

Epoxy (1), Multifunctional Epoxy (2), Modified Epoxy or Non-Epoxy (max wt. 5%) (3), Flame Resistant

UL/ANSI FR-4/129

170⁰C

3.0%

340⁰C

5.4

 

Many of our customers choose to specify a range of IPC4101 laminate's that are certified for use in the production of their PCB’s. As the PCB fabricators, we select a material, from your range, that is freely available and meets any key cost point parameters. We also make certain that your qualified material meets the UL criteria for flammability, as specified by the UL standard flammability rating "V0".

Once we have correctly specified the material to be used in your critical PCB product together, it is important to also establish that your fabricator has achieved UL certification for the stated material system. To do this, you should be able to provide the relevant UL documentation in support of this.

Some fabricators choose to use materials that they are not UL certified for. Pure PCB ensures our manufacturing is completely safe by utilising only laminates that are fully UL qualified to fabricate.

Specifying Material Selection for your PCB Design

Material selection is a balancing act in ensuring that the chosen laminate exhibits both the correct mechanical and electrical properties commensurate with your design. Material selection should take into consideration the assembly process that the PCBs will be subject to regarding thermal cycling from a soldering perspective. At Pure PCB, we keep all these considerations at the front of our minds and support you in choosing the base materials for your PCB.

Pure PCB specifies and warrants the material used as part of its product release. All materials that we use in your product are clearly stated on our First Article Inspection Reports (FAIR).

Pure PCB invest heavily in keeping a wide range of laminate systems in stock to cover a diverse range of requirements and a selection of our current laminate stock can be seen.

If you require any further information in regard to laminate selection, contact us and our applications engineers will be able to assist accordingly.