This hands-on workshop will guide you thru the process of building a printed circuit board (PCB) from soup to nuts. We’ll learn basic PCB terminology (pads, vias, tracks, layers, impedances, etc.) and learn how boards are fabricated / assembled. We’ll also look at the circuit design process including component selection, which tools are available, and common software concepts (pads and pins, components, symbols and footprints, routing, wiring, etc.). We’ll also look at best practices, rules and constraints, standards, and ultimately build a board ready to manufacture.
Though this isn’t a course in Ohm’s law or a crash-course in engineering, we will look at engineering concepts and explore the PCB as a part of the circuit (current carrying capacity, impedances, track lengths / inductance, decoupling / grounding, pad geometries, etc.) in an effort to develop some rules of thumb or intuition when making design decisions.
We will also explore common fabrication and assembly processes and terminology, as well as the files required to build a board and questions manufacturers will ask and how to answer them.
Finally we will explore component selection and learn tips for gaming the supply chain.
By the end of the session you will have designed a PCB ready for manufacture at any board house using Cadsoft Eagle, and we will go through the exercise of submitting files to a manufacturer.
Matt Berggren is a hardware engineer, systems architect, and product manager who spent 15 years in product management and hardware development at Altium, helping develop the underlying Altium hardware development methodology and workflow used by Altium customers. Since then he joined Supplyframe as senior director of product focusing on vertical search for electronics and making sense of electronics information from across the web.
Matt also runs several popular workshops in San Francisco, where he teaches entrepreneurs, hackers, makers and the like to develop circuits and circuit boards, and hosts meetups for engineers to discuss hardware development and electronics design. He has worked in the US, Australia, and China building electronics for the global market, and runs engineering teams in both the US and hands-on in China.
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