Many PCB users see the benefits of using Alumina or ceramic boards over the traditional type made from other materials. This is due to the fact that Alumina or ceramic PCBs offer the right substrates for any electronic circuit having a low coefficient of thermal expansion and a high thermal conductivity.
Alumina PCB is very versatile and will take the pace of a full traditional PCB, and with increased performance and a design that is less complex. They are also useful in many products, such as proximity sensors, circuits of high power, and chip-on-board modules. Now, let’s understand what Alumina PCB is really about.
What is Alumina PCB?
Generally, two major substrates exist in ceramic printed circuit boards. The first is Alumina, while the other is Aluminum Nitride. Alumina is not just the most widely utilized material for printed circuit boards, it is also known as the most effective utilized on ceramic substrates.
Furthermore, this substrate is cost-effective and is made up of major thermal conductivity. Also, it is made up of ceramic materials used for major thermal conductivity. In addition, Alumina PCB has ceramic material in them, which serves multilayer packages. This provides added strength, great electrical properties, good hermeticity, high density, and good thermal conductivity, to ensure that the interconnections are fruitful.
To ensure its constant use for a long time, this has passed through different experiment layers and the development has been on for many years. This sure improvement in Alumina PCBs have given it a worthy performance and given it a great track record.
Alumina PCB Components
Alumina PCB is also referred to as metal base PCB and Al2O3. This PCB makes use of an electrically insulated and thermally conductive dielectric material among the metal, and along the layer of copper.
This can be useful in all devices having heat dissipation, and requires the control and maintenance of the temperature due to the fact that Alumina PCB features thermal conductivity. Furthermore, the Alumina PCB construction has three layers.
Its circuit layers are all copper-made and they have a thickness of around 1-20 oz. To make the base layers, this PCB will need to utilize aluminum or copper metal substrate.
Features that Make Alumina PCB Worthy
Alumina PCBs have three major Alumina Oxide types. These include Alumina substrate 99.6%, Alumina substrate PCB 99.5%, and Alumina substrate 96%. Every one of these substrates is very effective and makes each of the devices worthy.
Alumina Substrate PCB 96%
The Alumina Substrate PCB 96% is a well-known variant that is available in printed circuit boards. The majority of microelectronic applications need this Alumina PCB due to the substrate materials.
The standard format necessary for this application type is the thick film substrate. The 96% of the Aluminum substrate into the printed circuit board is utilized extensively for the creation of hybrid microelectronic circuits.
As a result of the minimal expense, high technical quality and availability of the Alumina Substrate PCB 96%, this makes it great for use in hybrid devices. Asides from this, it provides the most appropriate chemical resilience, thermal conductivity, dimensional solidity, and mechanical power.
Alumina Substrate PCB 99.5%
This substrate is useful in applications with smaller grain size. Non-critical applications can make use of the Alumina printed circuit board. The finish on the 99.5% surface can achieve a max finish due to the fact that its grain size is a little bit larger. The materials possess reduced flexural strength, dielectric consistency, dielectric strength, as well as thermal conductivity.
A very good benefit of this is that you can find it in bigger sizes, and the thickness must be better.
Alumina Substrate PCB 99.6%
This is useful for thin-film substrates that are standardized. The Alumina substrate 99.6% is great for use in chemically vaporized, evaporated, and sputtered metals. It comes with a purity level that is high and its grain having smaller size ensures that the Alumina PCB substrate 99.6% offers a much smoother outcome without any defect to the surface.
Normally, it obtains below 1u-in for the surface roughness of the Alumina PCB substrate 99.6%. With this, you are sure of having a mechanical performance that is high, a thermal conductivity that is low, great dielectric properties, good electrical insulation, and a great corrosion which offers the best wear-resistant.
Alumina PCB Manufacturing
As mentioned earlier, one material that is very important for use during printed circuit board manufacturing is Alumina.
The properties of the materials of Alumina PCB are diverse in contrast to the other options on the market. It has several ceramic components. Also, its material properties are different when compared to fire-resistant materials or metals.
This is why there is a difference in the manufacturing process of Alumina metal core PCB in contrast to the others. Hence, the Alumina or ceramic application in the printed circuit board industry serves a specific purpose. In areas where the other printed circuit boards don’t fit appropriately, the best option to choose is Alumina. Alumina PCB materials are rigid and strong, and they offer great support to its components.
To mount on the PCB’s surface, this substitute will be a great one to add. In comparison with competitors, it has a high performance. This includes the materials’ thermal conductivity. Also, temperature consistency is higher in contrast to some other materials. One pitfall here is that, at times, the material may become more expensive compared to the usual materials. This is usually the case when you use it for high-grade devices that are inevitable.
The strong thermal dielectric, great high-frequency performance and low expansion is one reason why it has become the most demanding and the most frequently used ceramic PCB. This is mostly utilized in devices required for heating and cooling, medical circuits, LED boards, sensor modules, as well as other devices of high frequency.
Benefits of the Alumina PCB
The most common ceramic material utilized in ceramic PCBs is Alumina Oxide. It makes use of low volume, thereby making it great for creating prototypes, samples, and programs with small volume, which will offer great help for the acceleration and upgrading of company development.
Furthermore, the medium and high-volume solutions can also be effective. This ensures the manufacturing process has competitive pricing. This ensures that companies will be able to alter the supply chain and footprint with respect to the volume of production.
Below are the major advantages of making use of Alumina PCBs.
- Provides great electrical insulation
- Makes sure that the ceramic printed circuit boards have normal mechanical strength
- It features great compressive strength
- Its expansion coefficient is lower (6 to 8 ppm per degree centigrade), which leads to reduced stress on the solder joints.
- Alumina adds to unmatched wears and corrosion resistance
- It has a comparatively high operating temperature which falls between 350 degrees centigrade to 1500 degrees centigrade
- Greater performance with respect to high-frequency applications
- Its thermal possessions are better and fall within (22 to 24 W/mK).
- Hard enough materials, which ensures a thermal conductivity that is moderate
- Offers great gliding properties, as well as low density
- The size of the package becomes small due to the integration, as well as multilayer applications possibilities
- Hermetic packages that ensure 0% water absorption
- Restricted outgassing
- Offers enough reflection of light as a result of the white color contrast
- It is manufactured from a rigid and strong material, which enhances durability
- The metal’s price is less compared to others
Application of Alumina PCB
Alumina PCB can be useful in the following areas:
- Street light
- Solar cell
- Telecom device
- High power semiconductorelectronic module
- LED chip (high power)
- Braking system
- Injection system
- Transmitter modules
- Resistor Card
Thermal Conductivity of Alumina PCB
The thermal conductivity of Alumina PCB or ceramic PCB is probably the major reason why more industries are beginning to lean on ceramics for their packages and printed circuit boards. This is because this material features a clear image in contrast to the traditional materials regarding this. Better coefficient of thermal expansion matching as well as hermetic sealing, will just add appeal to these materials.
One challenge here is that the materials, as well as the boards your Alumina PCB manufacturer produces from them, are more expensive compared to traditional PCB materials. This can compound greatly over the period of a job requiring high volume.
However, the advantages of ceramic circuit boards and their importance in increased thermal conductivity are great to the extent that companies which can afford the use of ceramic boards can achieve this due to necessity.
Estimating the Thermal Conductivity Level of Alumina PCB
Depending on your manufacturer, it is possible to estimate the thermal conductivity level. This is why you should work with us. However, in doing this, the end values will come different. This depends on the process of manufacturing used, the size of the grain, and the composition. Though we may not have an idea of the board’s exact value, you can consider the following range of values, which experts have agreed on.
Aluminum oxide is one of the major ceramics. At room temperature, its thermal conductivity falls between 18 and 36 W/mK.
Aluminum nitride PCB is very popular. Although aluminum nitride is an expensive ceramic, many identify it as more than 150 W/mK to about 180 W/mK. Moreover, according to studies, at room temperature, values here range between 80 W/mK to about 200 W/mK. Then as you move closer to 100 degrees Celsius, the values drop by over one-third.
Temperature ranges of other materials
Here are the other ranges of thermal conductivity at room temperature. For beryllium oxide, it falls within 184 and 300. For Boron nitride, it falls between 15 and 600, while for silicon carbide, it falls within 70 and 210 W/mK.
Due to the wide variations, it becomes difficult to pin the true thermal conductivity values down. The best approach you could work with is do your personal testing, then go ahead and record your obtained values and then utilize them in your calculations.
Why Choose the Best Manufacturer for your Alumina PCBs?
Due to the advantages printed circuit boards offer, as well as the countless industries you can apply them to, you may have some interest in what the best manufacturers can help you with. Below are some of the great services top manufacturers like us will offer your Alumina PCB.
Skilled manufacturing and engineering staff
Top manufacturers like us have an expert staff, which is set to assist you in receiving the best Alumina PCB for all your products. You will be rest assured that these staff have your needs in mind and they have the required experience in delivering top-quality results.
Design Rule Check
Top manufacturers have staff that use a Design Rule Check. This helps them to ensure that boards customers receive have been properly optimized for space use. With this DRC software, you will be sure that you get your board’s optimal layout.
Assurance of quality
Top manufacturers have a policy for PCB quality assurance in place for you. This is just to make sure that customers receive only boards with premium quality. They also have a quality control team that monitors all the production stages of the Alumina PCB. This ensures they meet the industry standards, as well as the requirements of the customer.
PCB DFM (Design for Manufacturability)
A good manufacturer will use design for manufacturability for your printed circuit board. This only makes sure that the manufacturing of the Alumina PCB comes with ease and successfully in line with quality expectations and product specifications. With improvements in your manufacturing design, you will be able to save costs, speed up the time your product gets to the market, increase the safety and compliance of your PCB, and improves the satisfaction of the customer
Ceramic PCBs offer appropriate substrates for printed circuit boards that require a high thermal conductivity as well as a low coefficient of thermal expansion. Alumina PCBs are usually composed of metal cores. It’s best to use boards made of aluminum nitride if you require a high thermal conductivity.