50 layer pcb

50 Layer PCB – Its Impact in Electronics Manufacturing

Printed circuit boards serve as the building block of most electronic devices. These boards feature different numbers of copper layers. Therefore, electronic manufacturers use multilayer boards due to the complexity of electronic devices. So far, multilayer boards have proved to be a reliable solution to producing complex and compact devices. This article aims to provide well-detailed information on a 50 layer PCB.

What is a 50 Layer PCB?

A 50 Layer PCB is a multilayer board that comprises 50 layers of copper. It consists of a series of double-sided copper plates. Furthermore, manufacturers combine several materials to make this board. A 50 layer PCB comprises insulating material and conductive copper. Also, the more the layers on a PCB, the better it performs.

This PCB features plane layers and signal layers. A 50 layer PCB board isn’t a regular PCB. It is often used in high-performance applications. There are several electronic components embedded on this board. A 50 layer board comprises more than 30 conductive layers.

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What is a 50 Layer PCB Stackup?

A 50 layer PCB stackup refers to the buildup of layers. It describes the arrangement of copper layers on the board. A 50 layer PCB comprises several layers laminated together to create a circuit board. The outer layers of a 50 layer board are single-sided boards. However, the inner layers comprise double-sided boards.

Manufacturers insert prepregs between the conductive layers. These layers are further stacked. The prepregs help to connect the layers. Furthermore, the 50 layer PCB stackup also contains ground planes and power planes. These planes play a significant role in the functionality of this board.

The bottom and top layers of this board are similar to that of a double-sided board. However, they have got stacked layers on the two sides of the core. Also, a 50 layer stackup comprises more than 30 routing layers.

Components of a 50 Layer PCB

A 50 layer board features several components. However, we will look at a few of these components:

Copper layer

Depending on the type of board, this layer can be copper foil or full-on copper. However, the copper layer is the same. This layer helps to transmit electrical signals around the PCB.

Silkscreen

This is an important aspect of the 50 layer PCB. It displays symbols, part numbers, and logos of various components on the PCB. Also, it offers details such as test points, component references, and symbols switch settings.

Substrate

The substrate is a core component in any type of PCB. It comprises woven fiberglass. The substrate functions as the skeleton of the board.

Solder mask

The solder mask of a 50 layer PCB shields the copper layer. Therefore, it prevents the occurrence of short circuits. The solder mask serves as the skin of the circuit board.

How to Manufacture a 50 Layer PCB

The manufacturing process of a 50 layer PCB involves several steps. Each of these steps is very important.

PCB design

This is a core step in the manufacturing process. It requires manufacturers to lay out a blueprint for the board. Here, you can use various types of software like Extended Gerber.

Photo plotting

Here, the manufacturer uses a laser photo-plotter. This machine plots a film for every layer on the PCB. A photo-plotter is a device that creates photo-tools for silkscreen and solder masks. Also, the film’s thickness is up to 7 mils.

Imaging and etching

This involves applying the basic images like traces and pads onto the PCB. The manufacturer creates the pattern for plating in this step.

Oxide treatment

Here, the manufacturer treats the inner layers with a chemical known as oxide. This process is necessary before laminating the multilayer PCB. Therefore, the oxide treatment helps to increase the copper roughness. This helps to enhance the bond strength of the laminate.

Lamination

Here, various layers of fiberglass are effectively laminated together. Manufacturers use a hydraulic press to apply pressure and heat. Also, the fiberglass sheet will melt and join the layers together.

Drilling

Holes are necessary to link copper layers on a circuit board. Manufacturers drill holes on boards to attach and mount components. Therefore, you can use some drilling systems to drill holes.

Copper deposition

Here, a thin coat of copper is fully deposited on the exposed surfaces of the panels. Also, manufacturers use electroless plating to deposit a copper coat on the holes.

Outer layer

The manufacturer applies outer layer images after depositing copper. A laminator machine can help to coat layers with the dry film.

Solder mask

Here, a liquid photo imageable solder mask helps to shield the copper surface.

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Advantages of a 50 Layer PCB

This PCB is widely used because of its functionality. A 50 layer PCB offers several advantages like:

Impedance control

The manufacturer must take note of the separately defined ground plane in this PCB. This helps to achieve impedance control.

Lightweight

This is one great advantage of using a 50 layer PCB. This board helps to design compact devices. For example, this board is available in smartphones and smartwatches.

Reduced noise

High-frequency applications need a good grounding shield. A 50 layer PCB enables users to position separate power and ground planes to ensure a good ground shield.

Enhanced functionality

A 50 layer board features more layers of copper which makes it more functional. This board is mechanically and thermally stable. Therefore, it is highly-functional in most applications.

Disadvantages of a 50 Layer PCB

  • High cost of manufacturing
  • Advanced designing skill
  • Limited manufacturers
  • Test and debug
  • Slow lead time
  • Complex manufacturing

Applications of a 50 Layer Board

  • Cloud computing
  • GPS and satellites
  • Navigation systems
  • Computer systems
  • Nuclear and atomic stations
  • Automobile parts
  • Heart monitors
  • Atomic accelerators
  • Data storage
  • X-ray equipment
  • Cell phone transmission
  • CAT scan technology

Conclusion

Printed circuit boards vary in size, shape, and the number of layers present in them. Multilayer boards are available on most devices. Also, even the smallest device features a multilayer board. In addition, the 50 layer board is an advanced multilayer board featured by high-performance applications. Furthermore, the board has a huge impact on the fabrication of compact and complex devices.

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