If you are here, you are probably already familiar with Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs). Modern electronics consider those boards an essential component. The PCBs enable electronic components to connect and communicate with each other through lines of wires.
Determining the right material for a PCB is crucial in determining the board’s performance, durability, and functionality. The most common and well-used material for PCBs is FR4. FR4 is a type of fiberglass epoxy laminate material.
In this article, we will examine FR4, its properties and unique abilities, and the reasons for its widespread use in PCBs.
FR4 is not the only material available, so we will also compare other materials to understand which one suits the best for your application.
FR4 is a type of fiberglass-reinforced epoxy laminate. It is a type of composite material consisting of layers of fiberglass cloth clogged together with an epoxy resin binder.
This type of material provides extreme mechanical strength, while epoxy resin provides insulation and protection from moisture and different type of environmental factors.
PCB manufacturers widely use FR4 material due to its excellent electrical, mechanical, and thermal properties. For new PCB designs, it is recommended to use FR4 most often. The material can handle both simple and complex PCB designs as one.
When you order PCB or PCBA, you will often be provided with FR4 as the first option. This material is very common and recommended among new designs. If you have any doubt regarding the PCB material you should use, FR4 might be your right choice.
FR4 has many properties and strengths that make it an ideal material for PCB manufacturing. Here are some of the most important properties of FR4:
Referring to the paragraph above – it’s mostly due to its strengths and properties. FR4 is a very popular choice for printed circuit board manufacturing due to its excellent electrical, mechanical, and thermal properties. Its cost-effectiveness is one of the main reasons why PCB manufacturers commonly use FR4 in their boards. It is much cheaper than other materials used in PCB manufacturing, such as ceramic or Teflon. FR4 is also widely available and can be easily sourced from many PCB manufacturers.
When you are looking to produce your PCB board you might look at different factors. Factors such as price, quality, and speed of manufacturing play an important role. FR4 answers all the above and enables designers to get the highest quality at the lowest cost.
Another reason FR4 is so commonly used in PCBs is its excellent electrical properties. FR4 has a low dielectric constant and low dissipation factor, which means it can maintain a stable signal and minimize signal loss. Its high insulation resistance and breakdown voltage also make it ideal for high-voltage applications.
When we use a certain material we want to make sure it suits our application. For FR4, most of its abilities related to electrical properties can fulfill the needs of most common designs.
FR4 is also mechanically stable, with a high strength-to-weight ratio. It can withstand mechanical stress, vibration, and thermal shock, making it suitable for a wide range of applications. FR4’s thermal properties are also excellent, as it has a low coefficient of thermal expansion and can withstand high temperatures without degrading.
These are the main reasons why This type of PCB material is most commonly used. When you are about to choose the material for your application, you should refer to this paragraph to verify if the material can fulfill your needs.
FR4 is a versatile material that is suitable for a wide range of PCB applications. Here are some situations where you should consider using FR4 for your PCB:
PCB manufacturers commonly use FR4 as a material, but it’s not the only material available. Each material used in PCB manufacturing possesses its own set of properties and advantages. Let’s take a look at how FR4 compares to other materials used in PCB manufacturing.
If you read this far – you are probably an expert in FR4 PCB material. Whenever you have a doubt about which material to use for your next project, we at PCBasic are here for you. PCBasic specializes in all types of PCB materials and fabrication methods.
With years of experience, we accumulated the necessary knowledge, skills, and tools to help you manufacture from a prototype stage all the way to mass production!
By uploading the Gerber files to our quotation system, we can recommend the most suitable material for your design. Do not hesitate to contact us and receive an instant quote for your next project.
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