Flexible printed circuit boards and rigid flex circuit boards are highly durable, reliable, and allow you to design your circuitry to fit a device rather than building a device to fit the circuit board. That is why the design is created upon receipt of specifications that meet the purpose of the final product.
Why Use Flexible PCBs
- Packaging: Unlike regular PCBs, flexible PCBs can fit just about anywhere, thus saving space and reducing the weight of wired solutions. In fact, flex PCBs can save up to 60% of the weight and space in comparison to rigid printed circuit boards. Flexible printed circuit boards are thin and lightweight, and they can be folded and positioned, allowing electronic devices to be miniaturized. Skilled flex circuit board technicians are able to solder very tiny parts by hand under a microscope, using tweezers and a fine tip soldering iron.
- Durability and Reliability: Flexible printed circuit boards can reduce the number of required interconnects, which means fewer solder joints and contact crimps. This will leave fewer potential sources of failure, therefore improving the reliability of the device. Furthermore, a flex circuit board’s ductility and low mass can significantly reduce the impact of vibration, improving performance. Polyimide is known for its exceptional thermal stability, which allows the device to withstand extreme heat. Consequently, flex circuits are often used for military and medical applications. A primary cause for circuit board failure can be linked to environmental stresses; however, these can be easily avoided when a device is used and stored under proper conditions. Unlike most rigid circuit boards, flex circuits can be built with materials that are more suitable for harsh environments. These materials include waterproof, shock-proof, and corrosion resistant properties.
- Cost Savings: The overall finished assembly packaging size and material costs are lower with flexible printed circuit boards. Flex circuits also reduce wire routing errors and decrease testing time, thus cutting additional costs.
Flexible PCBs can be found in a number of regular household items. Your cell phones, computers, televisions, clocks, and microwaves all use flexible printed circuit boards. Medical technology such as brain scanners and x-ray machines, automobiles, GPS navigation devices, and military technology also use flexible PCBs because of their many advantages over other circuit boards.