High-Quality Metal Core PCBs with Competitive Pricing
What is a Metal Core PCB?
A metal core PCB is a printed circuit board with a metal substrate to be a substitute of FR4 which is the most commonly used PCB laminate. MCPCB always contains three layers: base metal substrate such as aluminum, copper etc., then a dielectric and a copper layer to etch traces. These metal substrate are always used to dissipate heat from electronic components. The most commonly used substrate is Aluminum, but there are also Copper, Iron and other alloys.
Metal Core PCB Materials and Thickness
The base laminate used in MCPCB are mostly aluminum which is widely used in LED and lighting industry. But there are also other materials such as copper, iron normally.
The standard thickness of metal core PCBs is 1.0 to 1.6mm, but can be thicker and thinner as well according to the function and usage.
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Advantages of MCPCB
Metal core PCBs are made of special substrate materials that are specially formulated to improve the heat dissipation mainly. MCPCBs also have other advantages that other type of materials do not have.
Applications of Metal Core Printed Circuits
MCPCB boards are ideal for various applications such as indoor and outdoor lighting, power supply, automotive lighting etc, such as:
Metal core PCB manufacturer Attentions
Thermal conductivity is the key for metal substrates. Different materials have different thermal conductivity. Therefore, before making metal circuit boards, it is necessary to confirm that the thermal conductivity of the metal substrate is consistent with the requirements of the customer’s product.
Thermoelectric Separation Metal Substrate PCB
For some ultra-high-power products and equipment, ordinary metal substrates still cannot meet the heat dissipation requirements of products. In this way, a thermoelectric separation metal substrate with better performance emerges as the times require. In this way, the heat does not pass through the circuit part, but is directly conducted to the metal substrate. The thermal conductivity of this thermoelectric separation metal substrate can reach more than 300W/(m·K).
Layer counts of MCPCB
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Things You Should Know About Metal Core PCB
Metal Core PCBs, also short for MC PCBs are one of the most widely used PCBs today in consumer electronics, industrial, automotive etc.
Basic introduction of MCPCBs
The basic layers of MCPCB includes:
Classification of MC PCBs
Technical Specifications of Metal Core PCB
Technical specifications of MCPCBs consist of types, processes, substrates, the thickness of the board, dimensions of the shape, the via diameter standard of the final product, the minimum circuit width, the minimum spacing, the degree of warping, solder mask, storage conditions and shelf life of products, the packaging method of products, etc.
Design for the Metal Core PCBs
Metal core grounding
Other aspects of DFM in MCPCB design differ little from standard PCBs, although CAD tools are not used to design these boards. Power electronics front ends need to follow some minor rules, notably IPC-2221 (creepage and release rules), as well as other standards for defense and aerospace. We should follow these metal core PCB design guidelines to get perfect MCPCBs.
Process of Metal Core PCB Manufacturing
Metal core PCBs of different types and different requirements should be manufactured according to different processes. Yet the basic process is the same. Generally, the steps of film plate making, graphic pattern, chemical etching, through-hole, and copper foil processing should be carried out by MCPCB manufacturer. The following manufacturing process of the single-sided MCPCB is taken as an example.
The manufacturing process of the single-sided metal core PCB
cutting → drilling → pattern→ etching → inspection → solder mask → (hot air leveling) → silkscreen → pounching → testing → inspection.
Double layer or muti-layer metal core PCB manufacturing process is more complex, normally a 2 layer or mutilayer circuit boards should be produced first.
Metal Core PCB Prototyping Steps
Metal Core PCB Components Mounting Guidelines
1. The requirements of cleaning boards during assembling MC PCB: the surface of the board should be clean without tin beads, component pins, and stains. There should be no dirt left by the soldering, especially at the solder joints on the plug-in side. The following components should be protected: wire, connection terminals, relays, switches, mylar capacitors, and other devices easy to corrode when the board is cleaned. And it is strictly prohibited to use ultrasonic to clean relays.
2. All components are not allowed to exceed the edge of the MCPCBs after being assembled.
3. As the pins of the plug-in components are scoured by the tin flow, some of the plug-in components will have a tilt after the soldering, so the technicians are required to make appropriate corrections for the components whose location is beyond the silkscreen frame.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Although both metal clad PCB and FR4 boards are all rigid PCBs, and both of them are widely used. But they are different. Their main differences are:
1, Materials used are different: metal based PCB uses metal core, such as aluminium, copper and other alloy, while FR4 PCB used only glass fiber;
2, Different usage: metal clad PCBs are always used in heat dissipation applications, such as high power PCB, LED PCB etc. But FR4 printed circuit boards are widely used in most of electronic devices.
The thermal conductivity of MCPCB board range from 1W/m·K to 400W/m·K, depends on the material parameters.