What are the Features and Manufacturing Procedure of a 3 Layer PCB?

A 3 layer PCB consists of three layers of conductive copper foils. It shows three layers of circuit board fixed and limited together. Heat-covered insulators are the elements used to fasten the layers together. The arrangement reveals that two layers are on the surface of the PCB. They are to connect the atmosphere.

A 3 layer PCB is not frequent in the market. However, some electronic devices need a specific stack up. It enhances the production of the anticipated performance of the device. It could also be a choice to save cost using a 3 layer board instead of other layer types.

The three layer PCB could either have a single or many conductor patterns. It increases the wiring area in the board. It is an option for use because it provides an adequate level of complexity for various designs. Nonetheless, the capability could change based on the gadget.


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Characteristics of the 3 Layer PCB

The under-listed attributes are common to the 3 layer PCB

  • 3 layer PCB reduces signal twists of the circuit assisted by the shielding layer
  • It lessens the density of the design. Also, it reduces the PCB compactness when used along the integrated circuit.
  • The three layer PCB reduces the space between the elements and signal transfer path. Meanwhile, it increases the wiring thickness.
  • The failure rate of the PCB reduces due to limited components welding joints.
  • Decrease in heat and enhanced functionality through the ground plane on the PCB

Advantages of 3 Layer PCB

The three layer board provides numerous edges in the design. They include:

Featherweight Body: 3 layer PCB design is an application in modern-day electronics. The lighter weight of the application enhances mobility. Thus, its compactness allows for more components is an added benefit using a three layer board.

Increased Flexibility:The 3 layer PCB utilizes a flexible manufacturing process. It helps to secure a flexible PCB. The layers involved in this design are minimal, thus its end design is flexible.

Superior Quality: Manufacturing a three layer PCB requires a large amount of designing. It will enhance its performance as compared to single and double-layered PCB. Thus, a 3 layer PCB is more durable and reliable.

High Durability: 3 layer PCB consists of insulated layers glued together. Protective materials and a prepregare the fastening agents. They help resist the pressure and heat used during the bonding process. It increases the durability of the design. Multilayer PCBs such as the three layer board are generally durable.

Manufacturing Procedure for 3 Layer PCB

Manufacturing a PCB is a very complex process to ensure great performance of the end product. The fabrication procedure differs after producing the first layer. This depends on the PCB type. The difference in the structure of the printed circuit boards might need a few extra steps.

A 3 layer PCB is a multilayer design whose manufacturing process matches its complexity. Leaving out any step could negatively affect the circuit board’s performance. The process step begins with the designing and verification of the circuit board.

These steps need computer direction and mechanical-driven gadgets. It helps guarantee accuracy and restrains short or incomplete circuits. After the completion of the design, the board undergoes a stern test. After passing the test, it is then packaged and delivered to end-users.

The steps are under listed below:

Designing the PCB

The first step in the manufacturing process is the design. Planning the blueprint to achieve all outlined for the design comes first. Designers complete this process through software called Extended Gaber.

The software is an excellent piece that encodes all the details needed by the designer. It translates the components notation in the inner layer. It also works as an output format. The software also checks every part of the design to ensure an error free design.


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Design Evaluation

This implies evaluating the design for any error. Each component on the board goes through checking to avoid incorrect structures.

Printing Phase of the PCB

After the evaluation process, the printing phase comes next. The plotter printer prints out the design in a film mood. It is a transparent photo negative of the board.

Internal Layer Copper Printing

This is the first step where real manufacturing begins. After printing the design on the laminate, pre-bonding of the copper on the same laminates comes next. This helps in setting out the structure of the PCB.

Notably, manufacturing a 3 layer PCB requires extra steps as expected of a multilayer PCB. These steps include:

  • Imaging the inner layer of the design
  • Etching of the inner layer
  • Restrain Stripping
  • Automated Optical inspection of the inner layers
  • Oxidizing the internal layer
  • Lamination of the layers
  • Solder mask
  • PCB finishing

Stacking up a Three Layer PCB

The stacking up process for PCBs has some ethical rules. These rules apply to designing a three layer PCB. They are as follows:

  • Signal layers are best placed close to the inner layer to enhance firm coupling
  • Two signal layers fixed at an adjacent position are not adequately
  • High-speed routes routed on thick micro-strips are the best situated
  • There should be spacing between the ground and power layers
  • The stack-up should be equivalent to the top and base layer inwardly.

Applications for 3 Layer PCB

Multilayer PCBs gained popularity across various industries in recent times. This popularity comes as a result of high demand for mini gadgets. Its featherweight and compact design made PCB the best choice for industrial applications.

Vital applications where 3layer PCBs are present include:

Consumer Electronics

They are also referred to as home electronics. They cover a broad range of electronic gadgets used daily. These home electronics gadgets include communication devices such as laptops and smart TVs. Smartphones and kitchen appliances are also included. Three layer PCB is best preferred because it adds to the compactness of the design.


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Medical Devices

Electronic gadgets are essential to the medical industry. The industry embraced miniaturization just as other industries did. 3 layer PCB meets the precise demands on the devices used in the medical industry. Their small size, durability, and featherweight design increased their demand and popularity.

Medical gadgets such as MRI and X-ray equipment use the three layer PCB in their design. The PCB is present in blood pressure machines and many other medical devices.

Industrial Electronics

Multilayer PCBs such as 3 layer PCB are durable devices of choice to other alternatives in the market. Equipment used in the industrial environment differs from consumer electronics. This is because the equipment is open to excessive humidity, dust, heat, and vibration.

These devices are functional for the whole day. Thus, durability is a feature that the devices in the medical industry require. 3 layer PCB meets the durability feature.


Our world is vast with the use of computers and automation. Thus, computer-related devices and their products embrace the use of the 3 layer PCB. Its functionality and reduced spacing attributes enhance its acceptability in the computer industry. 3 layer PCB aids superior performance at a reduced cost.


The evolving technology raised the stake in high speed and high-performance applications. This in turn causes a significant increase in the demand of multilayer PCB such as the 3 layer board. Understanding the quality required by end-users helps in building PCB solutions. Through multilayer designs, the delivery of high performing gadgets are easier


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