Issues With Relying on 0.5mm Pitch Guidelines
What we're seeing is all the big players in the industry are really ramping up production of portable, mobile, and wireless devices like smart phones and small computing tablets. So, you can get ready for a continuing flood of these small products on the market. But 0.3 mm pitch devices aren't exclusive to these smaller PCB applications. You can expect those same devices populating larger PCBs as well since OEMs want to pack more and more functionality on those boards. This is all well and good for the OEM bottom line. However, you can well imagine that with all the pluses associated with this dramatically growing product market, there are some minuses.
Dealing with 0.3 mm pitch devices is among the most significant since apparently, the industry is not quite ready to deal them. That's what all upcoming portable and mobile products will be based on. Whether you know it or not, this next technology step is essential for successfully designing and assembling the next generation of these portable communications and computing products.
At issue is the fact that currently there are no formal IPC design guidelines or layout rules specifically tailored at supporting 0.3 mm pitch devices. The electronics industry hasn't come up with the highly important specifications and expertise to perform 0.3 mm pitch design and layout projects.
As a result, many PCB design and layout engineers largely rely on traditional 0.5 mm pitch design guidelines and layout rules to develop new 0.3 mm pitch devices-based designs. For example, the older design guidelines allow PCB design and layout engineers to design a solder-ball-joint pad with the diameter of 20 percent less than the diameter of a BGA/CSP solder-ball.
But the issues associated with using earlier generation design rules and guidelines for 0.3 mm pitch devices-based designs can be far ranging. Suffice it to say that when PCB designers do this for 0.3 mm pitch micro CSPs, for example, solder paste deposition on the balls is not adequate, thereby creating opens and voids on assembly joints.
A word to the wise and caveat emptor if you decide to opt for other than NexLogic Technologies - be sure to check in with your CM or EMS provider to perform a careful analysis and evaluation of which route they plan to take when designing and assembling your PCB projects based on 0.3 mm pitch devices. It could prove to be one of your smartest moves.